Wednesday, 17 July 2013

The Hunger Games

Viewed yesterday on HBO, I had to sit out this one -- despite the innumerable and irritating commercial breaks. Now why would a 16 year-old decide to kill her friends? This is a ground-breaking YA film here where the moral issues are subsuming and humans play God. But Katniss overturns the moral order when she refuses to fight her lover Meeta to the death. Instead, both decide to eat poison berries before -- like God intervening to stop Abraham from sacrificing his son -- they are stopped. The movie raises disturbing questions of about how far teenagers would go to achieve their ends. Thankfully Katniss draws the line.

My most thrilling moment while watching is when Katniss shoots her arrow into the pouch of apples and they tumble out,  lobbing on the luggage to detonate the mines around in a sort of hara-kiri. The screenplay is breathtaking and the vocabulary sparse. The vehemence of the lush jungle is contrasted with the decadent shots of the perpetrators of the game. I also like the one where Katniss fires her arrow at one of the judges of her archery competition and in the shocked silence that ensues says, 'Now, that I have your attention.' (I don't think she completes that line.

Based on a SF novel by Suzanne Collins in 2008 (Scholastic) the film directed by Gary Ross in 2012 has been compared with Stephanie Meyer and Stephen King. Collins used reality TV, Greek myth and Roman gladiatorial games to inspire the movie.
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