Sunday, March 25, 2012
The Hunger Games
This isn't something I've ever really covered in any previous blog post so I might as well cover it now. I've heard many arguments for and against the series of books and now the new film. I won't rehash them now because there would be no point. I only know what I personally like and what I do like is The Hunger Games. I saw the movie yesterday with an entire group of teenagers from the library where I work and I went again today with my sister and our closest friend. All three of us are in agreement. The film puts many franchises to shame, Twilight included. Most of the time books are so much better than their movie counterparts but in regards The Hunger Games the two are nearly equal.
Like I said, I won't rehash any arguments. All I know is that I view Katniss as a kindred spirit. I'm not a warrior and I'm not a hunter. What I am is an older sister. I would do anything, literally anything, to keep my sister out of harm's way and if it meant volunteering to be slaughtered in a horrific arena than that's what I would do. I obviously make a connection to Katniss that many other people don't. I read these books and I watched this film from the viewpoint of an older sister who understands Katniss' perspective.
I think it's a shame that many Christians try to over-analyze the premise of The Hunger Games. Is it because there is no religion at the end of all things? This is just a story after all. Religion doesn't have to be in every story ever penned. Is it the idea that humanity could fall so far as to have an arena where 23 out of 24 teenagers are executed every year, accepted by society? Hey, we've been there before. Anyone remember Rome? Humans are sinners, always have been and always will be. The only difference between a Christian and your average sinner is that Christian are covered in the blood of Jesus and saved by grace.
I can see humanity reaching the point of depravity where it would be entertaining to watch teenagers fight to the death in an arena. And that, I think, is why Suzanne Collins wrote these books that are so unlike any others that have ever been published. She's using her talent, i.e. writing, as a warning. She's calling for compassion to those who would be considered weak. She's defying the very concept of survival of the fittest. Was Peeta fittest? No, he certainly wasn't, but he was compassionate. How about Katniss? She certainly wasn't the strongest or the cleverest but she did her best to protect others. The only time Katniss took a life was either in an act of protection or as an act of mercy.
Preaching isn't really my thing so I'll stop here. Except to say that I LOVE The Hunger Games. Books, film, author, actors, directors, screenwriters, everything. The film was the best adaptation from a book I have ever seen, including The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter. The books are some of the most exciting I have ever read except perhaps the Inkheart trilogy by Cornelia Funke. Such a shame the movie was so horrible! But The Hunger Games movie is worth it! What it's saying about humanity is true because we are sinful and the more aware we are of our sin natures the less likely it is that such an event as The Hunger Games could ever take place. Now, if this isn't your thing, your genre, than that's one thing. Nothing could ever compel me to like horror, so I get it if you don't like The Hunger Games because it's just not your thing. No hard feelings. :)
For those planning to see it, though, please, please, please leave the kids at home! Everyone remember The Dark Knight with that lovely pencil trick by the Joker that you don't really see but your brain thinks you did? Well, let me just say that The Hunger Games is more violent than Batman ever could be and so it is not for kids. PG13 is there for a reason!