The Hunger Games
Our Rating
3½ Stars - Good
Average Rating
 
(150 user ratings)ADD YOURSHelp
Mpaa Rating
PG-13 (for intense violent thematic material and disturbing images, all involving teens)
Genre
Directed By
Gary Ross
Run Time
2 hours 22 minutes
Cast
Stanley Tucci, Wes Bentley, Jennifer Lawrence, Willow Shields
Theatre Release
March 23, 2012 by Lionsgate

Though based on a young adult novel, The Hunger Games is no fluffy Twilight. This is not a "teen movie," but a movie about a teenager—a strong character whose story deserves to be told. This is also not an adaptation hastily thrown together to capitalize on a pop culture sensation. It is a well-crafted film with genuine inspiration, creative innovation, and a defined voice—with something real to say.

This is what teen lit adaptation can look like when the subject is respected, when the audience is not being pandered to, and when the source material is a strong story. The Hunger Games is a dark and engaging action/drama laced with social critique and dystopian sci-fi. But most of all, it's the story of a girl and crushed innocence.

Jennifer Lawrence, who plays the lead role of Katniss Everdeen, described Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy as holding up "a terrible kind of mirror: This is what our society could be like if we became desensitized to trauma and to each other's pain."

We see this society through the eyes of Katniss, a 16-year-old girl in Panem, an iron-fisted society that rose from the ashes of North America's collapse. Long ago, Panem's districts rebelled against its governing Capitol—and have paid dearly for it ever since. As a painful reminder of who they serve—or as President Snow (a reserved Donald Sutherland) says, a reminder of The Capitols's generosity and forgiveness—two children, called "tributes," from each district are selected each year to participate in the Hunger Games, a fight to the death. Most tributes are selected by lottery—and the odds of getting chosen increase each time they must borrow food from the government. Some kids, in districts closer to the Capitol, ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Tags:
Browse All Movie Reviews By:
Read These Next
Current IssueThou Shalt Have a Good Time
Thou Shalt Have a Good Time Subscriber Access Only
Enjoying yourself is a spiritual discipline.
Current IssueImmigrants Are Reshaping American Missions
Immigrants Are Reshaping American Missions Subscriber Access Only
Latino congregations are launching their own international partnerships to support ministries and churches in their homelands.
RecommendedWhy We Need Wonder Woman
Why We Need Wonder Woman
Even when it falters, the new female-led film brings freshness to the superhero flick.
TrendingKay Warren: 'We Were in Marital Hell'
Kay Warren: 'We Were in Marital Hell'
Through God's work in our lives, we've beaten the odds that divorce would be the outcome of our ill-advised union.
Editor's PickThe Refugee Ban Is Back, But Church Connections Might Trump It
The Refugee Ban Is Back, But Church Connections Might Trump It
World Relief wants clarification over today’s big Supreme Court decision.
Christianity Today
The Hunger Games
hide thisAccess The Archives

In the Archives

March 2012

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.