From book to screen
So I’ve seen The Hunger Games movie this weekend, and I am pleased to tell you that I did like it.
It is not like the best movie ever, and I don’t know if the impact was similar for the people that haven’t read the book yet, still the producers managed to do a wonderful job at portraying the complex story from the book series. Of course, there were some things left out (which is perfectly normal in these cases), there were some changes here and there (some for the best, some not so much), but overal it was a great ecranisation and I would gladly watch it one more time, or even several more.
I will start with my one and only complain – the camera shakiness.
Oh, dear, I am sure the director though it would be such a great effect, but it made me dizzy and it got on my nerves at some point.
Really, I wanted to kill the person holding the camera and then put the freaking thing on a steady ground. One part of my brain was screaming to my eyes “focus damn it, just focus already!” and you see, when the screaming gets too loud it’s quite hard for me to be able to concentrate and enjoy the scenes.
Also I had a bit of trouble with the soundtrack (for example when Peeta confessed his crush there was this silence that could have been filled someway to make it all more dramatic), but I’m a music freak so it might be just me.
Now to the good stuff:
The acting – I still don’t think some of the actors resemble the characters I had on my mind, but their acting was really great (think about Effie’s annoyance for example, and then think about Rue, and Prim, and President Snow, and Haymitch, and Seneca, and also the main characters and the other tributes). I really shouldn’t have been worried about their acting skills as they were all amazing.
The fluidity of the story – some say it was rushed and compared to the book it would definitely feel like that, still except for the ending (and the cave scenes), I liked the pacing. It didn’t dragged too much, but it showed enough to understand what the story was about. They had to make some changes, but not all of them were as bad as some people made them sound.
Take the pin for example. Yes, they took Madge out of the picture, but the moment when Prim gave back to Katniss the pin for good-luck in the games was so heartwarming, it almost made me cry.
The visual effects – I loved the world created – the scenery from Panem, the control room, the avenue of tributes and so on. The people living in Panem were as colorful as I’ve imagined them and as contrasting with the people from other districts.
Scenes I liked – The goodbyes, the ones showing Peeta’s skill, the tracker jacker, the flaming dress, the fire balls, and a lot more 🙂
I could go on and on about the movie, but I think I will stop now. Be free to share your impressions with me, as I bet I will remember a thousand things I should have said about the movie in this article, LOL.
And if you haven’t seen it yet.. what are you waiting for? Go see the movie if you liked the books – in fact I think it might appeal even to some of the people that have nothing to do with the book series.
I enjoyed it too and I think it was good to go in not having read the books recently, my friend who’d just read the series noticed many more changes that I didn’t notice so not as much bothered me!
Same here ;))
I thought about re-reading the book, but didn’t get the chance. I am glad as well for not noticing too many changes.
I saw The Hunger Games a couple of days ago and I’m already desperate to go and see it again! Great post and analysation! 😀
I want to see it again too and to pay more attention to the details I’ve missed the first time 😉
I can only think if a couple changes that were made because it’s been so long since I read the books. I’d almost like a list so I could go ‘oh yeahhh!!, that’s how it went!” haha
Totally agree with you about the camera though, it was wicked hard to tell what was going on because of the camera shaking the whole time
I’m in the same situation.
I’ve noticed so far: the pin, Cato’s death (and some others that were made less horrifying) the last scene with Seneca, the ending with Peeta and Katniss.. Maybe I’ll remember more ;))
Oh I loved this movie too. I have read a bunch of people saying the camera seemed shaky and strangely enough I never noticed, I think I was just so focused on the movie. Yes I was sad the cave scenes and the end were rushed a bit. But overall they did a great job adapting it from the book.
I’ve noticed the problem with the camera from the very first teaser, but I hoped to be handled some way in the editing process. I am glad that you didn’t pay attention to it, as it was quite disturbing for me 🙂 But as you say, they really did a great job with this movie, with or without that problem.
I agree, Ari–I liked it, though I didn’t necessarily love it. I was actually okay with a lot of the changes they made (taking out Madge, adding stuff about Snow, etc), although other changes and omissions I really mourned, like Rue’s relationship with Katniss, more of the bleakness in the districts, etc. But overall, an enjoyable film. 🙂
Wendy @ The Midnight Garden
Yes, 142 minutes seem like enough time for a movie, but when it comes to this story they could barely bring to life the most important parts without losing too much.
I wanted more time with Rue as well as I loved both the caracter an the young actress 🙂
I’m going to see this again next week 🙂 I really liked how it was filmed, but maybe that’s the Film Studies geek coming out in me haha. A lot of the actors (in my mind) didn’t really look how I expected them to, but played the characters pretty much EXACTLY how I pictured them, especially Cinna.
My only complaints I really have are the removal of 2 pieces of dialogue: Gale’s “Katniss, remember I…” line as he says goodbye had our entire group shouting at the cinema screen, especially as it was replaced by the (rather pathetic in my opinion) line “I’ll see you soon”. I was also a little annoyed and disappointed that they cut out the conversation between Katniss & Peeta on the train home about how much of what happened in the arena was real & how much was acting. For me they were both really important parts of the series.
I don’t know, it just kind of felt that they were downplaying the Katniss/Gale relationship and amping up the ‘reality’ of Katniss/Peeta far too early, just because they already know how it’s going to end :S
Yes, I agree with you about the lines that didn’t make it into the movie. I’m not sure what the intentions were but they seem to change a bit the course of things in the next movies. Also, I am happy with the casting choices they’ve made.
I would definitely need to see the movie again because you know how it is the first time – you don’t know which details to take in, but I was glad to see that it was better than expected (I dropped my expectations a bit not wanting to be disappointed, and I was surprised to see that there was no need for that after all).
About the camera, this is a personal preference – I like clear images I can focus on, but I understand that there are various techniques used to achieve different results.. I wish I could appreciate their work, I really do (I’m sure they did a good job from another point of view), but I’m afraid that I just can’t *sigh*