“The Hunger Games” stands up against its source material
There are few book-to-movie translations that are on par with their book counterparts, but I must say that “The Hunger Games” is a great translation to the big screen. I daresay the movie was more enthralling than the books, taking less time to get through and telling Suzanne Collins’ epic story with a wonderful degree of accuracy. The drawback, however, is that these books are written in a first person style that is at best mildly intriguing. The dialogue becomes flat at times, and though Katniss is a strong lead character with interesting quirks, there are times when she degrades from the powerful female protagonist into a petulant teenage girl—a change that, unfortunately, is not purposeful on Collins’ part. On top of the unsteady character development, the books are written at what I can only assume to be a middle-school level (much like the Twilight books). “The Hunger Games,”—and indeed, the books after—are heavy with complex themes and a great number of political hokum. For experienced readers, it is difficult to say whether or not the books are written for a younger or an older audience, as the complex central themes of the books clash with it’s far from superb writing style.
The movie, however, seems to leave out the occasional bad writing and create a vibrant world from the beginning. Though there were parts left out, as is such with every book-to-movie translation, the translation of Katniss’ personality as well as the developing affection of the two main heroes and the intense and cruel activities of the oppressive Capitol for its the creation of the Hunger Games— the violent event after which the book was named— the transition from the book is stunning, making the once flat dialogue and unimpressive emotional charges in the book come to life full-force on screen.
Centered around the life of Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), the normal girl’s entire world is in upheaval after she, by fate’s hand, ends up taking part in the Hunger Games. The Hunger Games themselves are a cruel punishment sent forth by the Capitol, the government that rules the differing twelve districts. Taking a boy and a girl as a “tribute” in these violent escapades, the Capitol makes the children—anywhere from ages 12 to 18— fight each other to the death until there is but one victor standing; the games are a way to keep the twelve districts under control, a reminder that the Capitol has them under their thumb, a reminder that rebellion is not something to be taken lightly.
The book and the movie are both well worth it to see and read—the movie takes much less time, of course, and with the lovely graphics, amazing acting, and the captivating story, those who wish to get into the quick up-and-up with the story would be better off simply watching the movie and going to Wikipedia for the small details that were missed.