HOLLYWOOD (WWJ) – The first thing many people have asked me about “The Hunger Games” is how could anyone like a movie about kids killing kids? And, I don’t blame them because – before seeing it – that’s exactly what I wanted to know. And now, after seeing it, I understand the concept and the message that the author of The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins, was conveying.
It’s not about kids killing kids. Although that does happen, it’s really about the message. And the message I took from it was really a message about peace and how the actions of one can affect the lives of many.
At the heart of the story is heroine Katniss Everdeen. Everdeen is somewhat of a loner, who uses a pretty mean bow-and-arrow to hunt and bring food home for her mother and younger sister. Her life changes when she suddenly becomes a Tribute; one of 24 teenage boys and girls who are sent from 12 “districts” to the evil Capitol of the nation of Panem to fight for their lives in the Hunger Games.
Director Gary Ross on the story and on Everdeen: “She begins as someone who only wants to fight for herself, for her personal survival – yet what she finds in the course of the Games is something more important than even staying alive. Her heart opens and she becomes someone who’s willing to sacrifice for something bigger.”
Academy-Award nominated actress Jennifer Lawrence stars as Katniss Everdeen. “I’m always drawn to strong characters, because I want to be like that,” Lawrence said. “This is a girl who has the whole world placed on her shoulders and she becomes a kind of futuristic Joan of Arc. I just knew that I had so much respect for the books and who she is that there was nothing I wouldn’t do to bring that out in the right way. I also loved that Gary understood that this movie is not about Katniss looking cool with a bow-and-arrow – it’s about her being heartbroken by all that she has to do.”
Starring alongside Lawrence is a stellar cast: Josh Hutcherson (Peeta Mellark), Liam Hemsworth (Gale Hawthorne), Woody Harrelson (Haymitch Abernathy), Elizabeth Banks (Effie Trinket), Lenny Kravitz (Cinna), Stanley Tucci (Caesar Flickerman), and Donald Sutherland (President Snow).
The Hunger Games is rated PG-13. Parents should take this rating seriously as this movie is definitely NOT for young children.
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