Posted by : Stephanie | November 23, 2013
I don’t want to take anything away from Katniss, but I was the girl on fire the night I saw The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. I didn’t have a gorgeous pyrotechnic gown designed by Lenny Kravitz; I had a fever. I was loopy and my body wanted sleep.
But I was thoroughly riveted by the movie. It took my mind off my illness and stopped me worrying about getting better in time for the impending doom of 2 out of 9 holiday realms colliding in apocalyptic fashion: Thanksgiving and Hanukkah. (Note to self: Talk to Pat about seeing too many sci-fi movies back-to-back.)
Did I see the first Hunger Games movie? No. Did I read the first book? Well, I slog/skimmed through bad writing to pick up key plot points, and only because you all said it was awesome. Then I put it down, thank the lord, and didn’t pick up the second. And I forgot about it.
It’s no Harry Potter franchise, whose books are complex and sublime and whose movies are epic dramas mostly true to their brilliant creator (except the last two films – so dark! So dull!). I never missed a movie, and I stood in line at midnight to get the final book when it was released (didn’t love the ending!). I have two Gryffindor scarves because the Sorting Hat twice sorted me so, and I have a wand that I bought at Ollivanders on Diagon Alley in Universal Orlando’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter. (Omg y’all spell check just corrected Gryffindor!! That’s so Lumos!)
What The Hunger Games franchise has going for it is a kick-ass female lead. She’s the Lara Croft of tween lit; she’s Hermione, Harry and Dumbledore put together (no I didn’t say Ron, bless his heart…would you?). She’s Charlie Brown’s Lucy. Yes, she kills other children. Um…but she’s also the primary figure of hope in a dystopian futuristic society. And like the Miley Cyrus skit on SNL says, “That’s pretty cool.”
So there I was with a bare-knuckles memory of book one seeing movie two. My Hunger Games movie crew consisted of Pat, of course, who was massively irked by some of the camera angles the director chose, and Lisa, a franchise mega-fan who wasn’t sure either of us could fairly review this movie having not seen the first.
Though I was about to pass out on the carpet near the concession stand as our post-movie conversation went on and on and on in a standing position, I felt in my feverish mind that I agreed with Pat: Each movie of a series should be able to stand alone (unlike me who was srsly about to lose it). I should be able to see Superman III and get that Clark Kent is Superman. Oops spoiler alert! I should be able to see Rocky V and understand that our hero Balboa can bench a million pounds in emotional baggage. Yes, movie fans, I should even be able to start with Godfather Part III and work my way back. I discovered the amazing Parks & Recreation in its third season; my first James Bond was Roger Moore.
I’m a woman of many passions, and I easily walked away from The Hunger Games. In fact I was relieved not to love it. Who has time for another obsession? I haven’t even read those books of gray shades. But after seeing this movie, I gotta tell ya, I’m in. I sort of can’t wait to see what happens to Katniss next. Will she let Peeta pet her some more or will she go back to Thor’s younger brother? (Team Peeta 4ever) Camera angles be damned! But I’m not, repeat not, reading more of the books.
Was Pat on Fire too?