Normally I would stand by a simple truth; “The book is always better than the movie” but that is not always true. In the case of The Hunger Games, I’m not going to say the book is better than the movie. I think they were both great but I can’t pick one over the other. If you haven’t been living under a rock, you would have heard of this book and the movie adaptation but just in case you haven’t, let me quickly sum it up. The Hunger Games is the story of a 16 year old girl that takes the place of her younger sister to compete in the annual televised event ‘The Hunger Games’. This is an event where a young boy and girl are called up randomly to participate in a fight to the death for survival for the entertainment of the rich and powerful.
Katniss is a strong character, with all the normal awkwardness you would expect from a teenager; having to deal with love, death and loneliness in this dystopian world that she lives in. But in the book it tends to focus a little too much on the cutesy teenage girl aspect and less on the darkness of her situation. The movie does have this same element but a lot of this has been cut down to make room for the main plot line. When it comes to the violence, the book seems more violent and the movie felt a little anti climatic at the end. Also I’ve found in the movie the tributes were very two dimensional and very annoying but when reading the book I didn’t notice this at all. Capital’s fashion was terrible in the movie and I was glad I didn’t have to be subjected to seeing it while reading the book. In the end, the movie slightly departs from the book but it really sets up the next movie (If it gets made) really well.
While I’m talking about this movie, I want to know what was with all the racism with the twelve year old from Division 11? In the book it mentions she had dark skin but people seemed so shocked when in the movie she turned out to be an African American. It shouldn’t matter what colour her skin was all that should matter is that Amandla Stenberg played the role perfectly.
The faults I had with the movie balanced out my problems with the book. I don’t think I can pick one over the other. I’m interested in seeing how the series plays out as a movie adaptation but at the same time I don’t have much of an interest to continue the series. I think as a stand-alone book, it’s fantastic; but if I try to predict the rest of the series and all I can see are love-triangles, fighting authority and a lot more romance. If this isn’t the case, I might read the other books; but at the moment I just think it works better as a single story. Problem is, if they are making the movies I feel inclined to read the book before seeing the movie.