Friday, March 23, 2012

The Hunger Games

Thought I'd jump on the bandwagon and give my two cents worth on the event of the week (in some circles, anyway.)

I guess I'm going to have to admit at some point that I'm not in the major demographic audience for teen fiction, although I actually read a teen novel yesterday. I actually checked out the first Book of the Hunger Games trilogy way back when. I read a little of it, but couldn't really get into it, so returned it without even getting through half the book. Fat lot of good I'd be at forecasting books that will be made into movies that bring with them crazy anticipation.

As for the concept of books being made into movies, I have almost always preferred the book to the movie. And for some of my favorite books which really sparked my imagination, such as the Chronicles of Narnia, I didn't even want to see a film version of them. After I saw Dustin Hoffman play Willy Loman in death of a salesman, I couldn't ever hear the Loman name again without Dustin's crooked smile coming to mind. I will say that I loved, loved, loved the film version of Les Miserables, even though Liam Neeson will forever be Jean Valjean to me. There is, of course, incredible lasting power in the visual image, and the images of forgiveness, mercy and reconciliation in Les Mis were absolutely beautiful to me.

I'm not sure why I was so adamant about keeping the Narnia story alive in my imagination, without being influenced by Hollywood. I just know that I found the written stories to be beautiful and powerful and I didn't see how a movie could improve on that.

Another subject I have been pondering this week is this fascination I'm seeing with going to midnight showings of these big blockbusters. I admit, I have stood in some very long lines to see my beloved U2 perform. That makes plenty of sense to me. But there hasn't been a movie, maybe ever, that I've been anticipating enough to want to stand in line for hours and stay up half the night to watch. Even when going to the actual theater was a weekly thing for me, I was content to see movies when they had been out for awhile. Maybe these days, going soon after opening is the only way to preserve the newness, the freshness of the movie just come out. I suppose it might be a good thing that these days we can access a hundred reviews of a movie with just a few keystrokes, but maybe a lot of it boils down to personal preference.

I think I'll give the Hunger Games trilogy another go. I like to be aware of what is current, and it's nice to have a coherent, intelligent contribution.

I'm glad for people who love these books and are loving the movie and enjoying the anticipation that goes along with it. But I'm not too sure I really understand it. And there you have it. Two whole cents worth.

1 comment:

The Mom Chef said...

I just finished reading the first book (someone pretty much forced a copy upon me) and it was ok. I honestly think they lifted the idea from Stephen King's The Long Walk and The Running Man. It's definitely the two combined.

If it's a movie I feel passionately about (Narnia, Lord of the Rings), then it's harder to see it on screen, but I still do just to see they manage to make a fawn or elf or centaur.

Will I see The Hunger Games? Yeah, but not at midnight.