Escape to the Movies: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

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Camaranth:
I haven't seen the films but I did read the books. It's kind of unfortunate that I went into them with the "its a battle Royal knockoff" mindset. It sounds like the film follows the events of the book quite closely.

The way Katniss was written still confuses me. It's like she was meant to be this total bad-ass, do anything for her family, tough, brave and willing to fight but the way she acts is almost the total opposite. The running and hiding I get, I think the smart thing to do in that senario is to hide and let the others kill each other off and then you, being rested, have the advantage on the guy who just fought 12 other people and flying monkeys. But in everything else she just comes across as kinda pathetic (especially in the later books). Still I'd rather have my young relatives reading/watching her than what's her face from twilight.

From what I am given to understand, at least from reading *about* the book from a librarian post on my library message board, is that Katniss is suffering from PTSD all through the second and third books. That, no matter she was hunting animals to survive in her home district, killing people is very different from hunting an animal to survive. Forcing kids to kill is not likely to end well. It's why she's such an emotional wreck later on in the books and films- and she never really gets over it, leaving her emotionally paralyzed, and probably ensuring the end of her life after the third book is not going to be very good or happy even though (spoilers)

Draconalis:
I'm going to be "that guy".

I don't even want to give this series a try because Battle Royal already exists and is awesome.

I would just spend the entire time comparing it to Battle Royal... and I doubt it can compete.

That's the weird thing too. I watched Battle Royal after having read (maybe even seen Hunger Games 1) and they seemed so dissimilar to me. The entire production was so different. The ONLY piece of commonality was that children fought to the death. Tone, themes, characters, all almost completely different.

I really don't get the out of hand dismissal and comparisons. I think Hunger Games quite different.

As for the movie, as someone who read the books and enjoyed them (I am an optimist though) I REALLY enjoyed this movie. I would go so far as to call it the most faithful book-movie adaptation I've ever seen, and an excellently acted, thoughtful and serious depiction. It was also VERY well paced! Some of that likely came from knowing what was coming, but then again, it's been a while since I've read it, and pacing was one of the many problems with the first one.

In any case, cheers mates!

Edit: Read through more comments. Sorry to find that you're just a troll dude! I was ready to elucidate some muthafukaz!

So it's the All-Stars spin-off of Hunger Games, I take it?

I think a part of the problem is the fact that it's PG 13, and for soem reason a hero can't kill even when their life is in danger.

That said, as for the faye vs. rest of the world stuff, I kind of draw some disagreement here. AND I'M USUALLY ONE OF THE PC PEOPLE SIDING WITH BOB ON THIS.

Every civilizationt that's doing well, finally creates an industry around fashion, makeup, and vanity. This is where the Fop stereotype comes from. Even now, in "heteronormative" terms it happens in PUA circles as "Peacocking". As for sci-fi, it's been a tradition since Star Trek or 60's Sci Fi. I mean, look at Plato's Stepchildren even.

That said, the point about visual shorthand is a very good one.

The offscreen killing thing is unfortunately also a problem with the book. Although it is important for the story that it is truncated, I'd rather have seen the games actually play out properly in the bizarre arena, with Katniss being a bit more proactive.

I don't think it's fair to compare Hunger Games to other actions movies though; it's a drama most of the conflict is not combat related at all. But I went to see the second movie without watching the first I was aware of the plot.

I enjoyed the story of a person essentially being thrust into the position of leader and symbol of a revolution she wants no part of and tries multiple times to run away from. She has the skills of a trained killer but gets no joy using those skills even none combat situations. She suffers ptsd, guilt and regret as a result of the hunger games but is threaten with death to her family and friends and forced to put on an act that would have continued for the rest of her life.

In most hero's journey story there's a point where you just feel like the protagonist is just being an ass and needs to man up and get shit done a perfect example would be Evangelion's Shingi. This movie show well and justifiably just why she tries to reject the call to action and rebel and I really like that.

My favorite character from the movie has to be Effie Trinket. In my opinion her character shows that underneath all the hedonism, propaganda, and willful ignorance that the people of the capital are still people with a sense that the system is wrong but essentially feel powerless to change it and compelled to keep the status quo (think the silent moderate republican).

The biggest thing the movie didn't do was show emerging discontent that was rising in the capital, but since there are more movies planned I'm not surprised this isn't in the second movie.

I'm not saying this movie is great but it isn't bad just don't expect an action movie.

To me comparing this to Battle Royale would be like comparing Children of Men to The Running Man, just a bad comparison.

Edit: Sorry made this post at 3 am mixed up blade runner and the running man

Has anyone ever noticed that when there is a movie that has conservative undertones, MovieBob will almost always give it a "less then good" review?

Just be patient Bob, 2 more movies to go.

blah blah Battle Royale blah blah Hunger Games. (Also... Running Man, Death Race 2000, Surviving the Game, Rollerball, Gamer, The Most Dangerous Game)

I have to wonder what your movie collections look like.

"This is my one horror movie, my one comedy, my one drama and my one action film. All others are just variations on a theme and therefore unworthy of time and energy."

Oh yeah... the review.

I can't say I disagree at all. The movies are a little bit on the dull side and it's hard to get emotionally invested in the various goings on when nothing of consequence seems to be actually going on most of the time.

I place the blame on that squarely on the adaptation of the source material. The books are all told in first person perspective which means we have little to no characterization for the supporting cast beyond those that Katniss provides. This isn't helped by her characterization as a self guarded introvert, it just means she doesn't really socialize with them enough for the reader to develop an understanding of their personalities.

This also kinda addresses the point of technology as magic. In the books, since Katniss only knows the technology from scant first hand experience there's no need for her to know, and therefore no need to explain to the reader how the Capital is able to do anything it does. The closest thing the reader gets is a loose explanation that a lot of it is leftover from the rebellion wars.

Resulting in out of nowhere werewolf attacks for example.

All things said and done neither the books or the movies are terrible, they're just nothing particularly exciting either.

So its basically like the first movie. Good premise, good actors, potential for some good action with underlining themes/morals to leave us thinking... on execution though, a very average movie. The first movie had 3 main issues, its at odds with itself, while the Heroine is seen as a extension of the people she is fighting for, honorable, valiant to a fault, yet she spends alot of time sulking & being pretty high strung for a "heroine of the people"..
a great setting for action that is supposed to serve as entertainment for the upper class... yet most of it is running and hiding, badly shot shakey cam, or happening offscreen.
the series has the whole extreme idealogies, political underlinings and rather violent novels and yet its a PG13 movie with barely any blood. Aren't we supposed to be getting shocked by children getting gruesomely killed? Pussying out and not showing it (or underplaying it) is counterproductive to the overall message.

I get Movie Bob's issue with the whole conflicting story aspect of "why keep people in poverty if a machine can create all this vegetation and animals", and how hamfisted the whole thing can seem.. but the bigger issues are far more problematic. The movie is at odds with itself!

Battle Royale doesn't have any of those issues, not to mention it had commentary on Japanese society, which eventhough it was about the Japanese school system & the larger society, much of it can be applied to Western society. The divide between the youth and teachers/parents/political figures, and the lengths the elderly go to discipline youth.
The misunderstood youth (ie one random class from one random highschool shipped off to an island) being forced to fight for their lives because of a growing national problem of youth violence, gangs and school shootings. A countries fear coming from within rather than outside forces, and the political climate selling the point that in order to overcome this problem it must force the message to the rest of Japan's school system that youth violence will only lead to their own downfall, while also combating the rising population problem.

Hunger Games substituted this divide with rich vs poor, and the poor being mostly in the form of children. I don't see that as any more or less hamfisted a premise, its just when you paint as the rich being so obviously evil & foppish, it kind drags everything down.
In Battle Royale its more clear from the only adult we can see, that being so absorbed with his work leaves him disconnected from his family... thats where it stems.

Also Battle Royale did something that no other film has for me, it deconstructs the nature of friendships, trust and our views on innocence. The problem of youth is the lack of any real open communication between youth or between youth and adults, but in extreme situations when guns are thrown into the equation, obviously everything is going to come out.
Penetrates the awkwardness/confusion, reveals the undercurrent of crushes/emotions... and by doing so gives them the experiences they need to overcome the reckless abandon of being a youth. The false nature of cliques are stripped away, friends turn on friends when survival is at stake.

The supposed "rebelliousness of youth" that larger society is afraid of, only comes out in 3 students. One that kills for revenge for being bullied, one that kills for mere pleasure and one that only does so in self defence but still does not want to be a part of the school system and hates adults (the 3 that seem slightly older than the rest).
The others seem to be driven to many other reasons, either trying to stay civilised/polite and hiding, suicide,
"killing to survive", or going crazy.

Draconalis:

Silverspetz:
Didn't you just say that you haven't even tried the Hunger Games? How do you know it isn't awesome?

Because it just can't compete... obviously.

Silverspetz:
but no one looks at the execution

Funny you should mention the execution. I just watched a video about the two that informed me of how long it took for each movie to get to the kids killing kids aspect.

Hunger Games: 66 minutes

Battle Royale: 18 minutes, and two kids are kill before the game even started.

What does the time it takes to get to the killing matter? That is not what "execution" means. Part of the whole point of the Hunger Games is the time they take to build the games up before the killing. The interviews, the crowd-pleasing and preparations. Without that the social satire that gives the story its deeper meaning would fall flat.

I think the problem with these movies, more than anything else, is that the books are moderately complex and have a lot of characterization and nuance and just don't translate well to the screen because a lot of the important things that happen are the result of the emotional complexities of characters that are (by necessity) pretty stoic on the outside. Also, in many cases the people making the movie just straight-up lack the guts to go anywhere near as dark as the books... which, in fairness is ABSURDLY dark. Like, the ending of Ender's Game seems like a light-hearted practical joke compared with where the story is going with most of its plot threads in the Hunger Games.

For instance, most of the stuff people seem to be complaining about as weaknesses in the movie are intentional plot points in the book, and significantly less powered by the magic of friendship:

The Katniss/Peeta chemistry not really working: primary plot point of the first two books (they have to fake a relationship to not die). The second movie carries this theme, but the first fails to quite capture how calculated Katniss is, how little she actually cares, or how much of a devastated, barely-functioning alcoholic wreck the situation leaves Peeta.

Katniss being kind of a wuss that's just hiding and/or faking it for all three books, and never accomplishes anything: probably the entire thematic (and extremely depressing) point of the entire trilogy, which is bleak as all fucking hell. If you put the moral of the trilogy into a single sentence it would be "individuals are entirely helpless against the forces of history, and also you're screwed, so just keep your head down and hope nothing in the uncaring randomness of existence spontaneously murders you".

It not being clear why you should root for the rebellion over the Capital types: a major theme of the second and third book. The short version is that the rebels AREN'T any better in the end-- the analogy here isn't the ineffectual, symbolic day-protest crap of the Occupy movement, it's the bloody (literally) Bolshevik revolution. And the books do in fact take a moment to remind everyone how THAT fully-justified rebellion turned out for everyone in the end. (For bonus points, the rebellion is an empty puppet regime for a hostile foreign government more intent on sabotaging the Capital than actually helping the poor... so, hey, there IS a reference to current US policy, it's just not one that'll make you feel good about anyone).

The camp gay Capital types being opposed to the earthy rebellion "good" types: an actual theme, but not in the way Bob is proposing. In the trilogy, the cosmetic differences are purposefully manufactured specifically to set the classes against each other so that they don't realize what they have in common... kind of another even-more-cynical comment on the role of the media in modern society. And taking the piss out of how TV throws up "stereotype" characters into everything specifically as well, the "gay sitcom friend" thing is the obvious reference but there are shots at Honey Boo-boo and Jersey Shore in there as well, the running theory being that the ruling class is creating artificial distinctions to keep us at each others' throats.

The capital having more than enough tech to feed everyone with ease, but not using it: you guessed it, intentional theme. To round out the "everyone is terrible, always" lesson, the capital is intentionally keeping people starving so they're too busy trying not to die to rebel... but the rebels are in the end doing the same thing in a slightly different way, setting up the Capital as to blame for every problem with things like staged, false-flag attacks with chemical weapons.

... so, yeah, you can see why this wouldn't necessarily work as well for a tween-targeted movie as for a junior-high-school polemic novel.

I do have similar feelings of "yeah i should like this movie but i dont".
As for your society question, it does not take much imagination to beleive how a ruling class can keep its subjects in relative poverty to be easier to control and feed false promises that keep the hope up. After all history has thousands of years for exampe.
The whole dome i think is a very very well done simulations. the birds, smoke, trees are not real they are artficially created by thousands of nanobots that can reassemble on command.

Dr. Crawver:
I have to admit I still don't get why it's so popular. I mean I had friends going to the midnight release of it. Why? It really isn't that good.

I think it's because of the books, heard they are quite popular and good. Still, not my cup of tea. My girlfriend was very excited though..and most women in the theatre. Maybe there's that.

I'm suprised no ones brought up the fact that everyone in District 11 is black. What's up with that?

Maybe it's explained in the book but, all the other districts have a mix except that one.

TheUnbeholden:
I get Movie Bob's issue with the whole conflicting story aspect of "why keep people in poverty if a machine can create all this vegetation and animals", and how hamfisted the whole thing can seem.. but the bigger issues are far more problematic. The movie is at odds with itself!

Take this with a kilogram of salt as I only made it through half of the first book, but at a guess I would say that it would involve stabilising the rate of population growth. The women in the poorest sectors probably do not have access to decent quality eduction or reliable contraception. Those who are willing to knuckle down and cooperate wholeheartedly with the system that enslaves them would probably enjoy opportunities to further not only their station in life but the station of their children. This generational trickle of fresh blood would serve to offset the negative population growth of the upper classes. And remember, add salt to taste as this is all pure conjecture.

wulf3n:
I'm suprised no ones brought up the fact that everyone in District 11 is black. What's up with that?

Maybe it's explained in the book but, all the other districts have a mix except that one.

They are? Hmm "looks at the riot scene from film 1", looks like 50%ish black. Is this so different from places in the rural south that its supposed to be located in?

Demandred20:

wulf3n:
I'm suprised no ones brought up the fact that everyone in District 11 is black. What's up with that?

Maybe it's explained in the book but, all the other districts have a mix except that one.

They are? Hmm "looks at the riot scene from film 1", looks like 50%ish black. Is this so different from places in the rural south that its supposed to be located in?

In the first movie yeah, but in the second movie not so much.

Sartan0:
My wife had me watch the first film last night to be ready for the movie in the theater this weekend. While it was not the best thing ever it was much better then most movies. There are a lot of dogs out there. I am inclined to give the new one the benefit of the doubt going in but I am not expecting much. If it is on the level with the first one I can deal with that.

Most movies?

What movies?

For a second there I thought they made a good movie this time.

I don't understand why Bob thinks that he's supposed to like these movies. He isn't. It's just like Twilight. A movie for teenage girls. It's nothing more than that.

Obviously the first book would have been "better" had the main characters taken the poison and no tribute was made. Which in an epilogue started the revolution that freed the districts. But still I do think the hunger games is pretty good, albeit low brow Orwellian.

wulf3n:

VikingKing:
This movie and Elysium both present the wealthy as being possessed of technology that renders traditional models of workforce composition ineffective and costly. But they exist anyhow to create that social commentary.

Frankly, when your hypothetical situation doesn't even make sense within the context of your own story, you had best go back and produce a motivation for your villains that isn't just 'I like being a jerk.' and nothing else.

Technology doesn't necessarily follow the path we assume.

While your statement is true of Elysium I don't really see it for The Hunger Games.

While the civilization in the Hunger Games has some advanced technologies what they don't have [or at least don't show] is any form of Artificial Intelligence, which is crucial in creating an automated workforce.

It does sort of follow the pattern of the ancient Greeks and Romans who had discoveries that could have resulted in labor saving devices but because of the abundance of cheap labor thanks to slavery that technology was never really exploited. For example the ancients had the basic understanding of steam power that could have resulted in steam engines, but with slaves to row the ships the ancients did not feel a need to replace the rowers with a steam engine. If there had been a shortage of labor then the steam engine might have came about in the ancient past.

Elijah Newton:
If it rises from 'made-for-tv' quality of the first one to 'average movie' I'll be politely surprised.

Having watched it last night I am, in fact, politely surprised. I get that this is no longer what the discussion is about but I found the quality to be vastly improved from its predecessor (no more incessant shaky-cam) in almost every regard. Also remarkable was, in hindsight, how much time the first movie had to spend world-building.

Lots of thoughts, none of which are probably interesting to folks here judging by the slant of comments. Suffice to say I've definitely sat through worse movies (and will again, no doubt) and this is not Battle Royale, nor is it trying to be any more than 1984 was trying to be Brave New World.

I just got back from seeing it today and while I did like it I found it absolutely depressing. Seeing how the disgustingly opulent treat the people of the outer districts really made my stomach turn. The movie was so despotic I was really shocked just how dark and oppressive the story really is and why teenagers seem to embrace it.

Please tell me I am not the only one that came out of that movie a little disturbed at seeing how families have embraced this as some kind of Twilight/Harry Potter alternative? The themes in this movie are leagues more darker then anything those movies ever where. It really is an Orwellian nightmare and I just hope kids are getting the right messages out of this movie.

Sadly, this was the last MovieBob review I'll watch. When I first started listening to his opinions, he was exited about movies. Now, he's just jaded and bitter. And what's with that Boston accent? I know that Bob is from Boston, I don't need to hear it every review.

lord.jeff:
The whole make up things isn't any different then what a lot of movies and Star Trek have done with facial hear, you're looking far to much into a simple visual queue.

A visual queue? Do you have to line up to see them or something?

Delcast:
... also, aren't we going a bit too overboard with the accent? We all know you can perfectly speak without it, so why force it so much?

I don't think he's forcing the accent, I think that's his actual accent. He has mentioned before that he has deliberately and self-consciously suppressed his Boston accent in the past. So, if anything, he's forcing it when he tries to speak without the accent.

Anyway, what's wrong with it? I say good for him for speaking naturally, rather than acting. Besides, even without the Boston accent, it's still a variation of an American accent. That variation may be preferable to you than the Boston one, but there's no such thing as spoken words without any accent.

TheDrunkNinja:

Anti-gay subtext? Um... No. No, Bob.

Uh, when did Bob say there was an anti-gay subtext?

If the movie is "anti" anything, it is anti-Hollywood, anti-one-percent, anti-doing-disgusting-things-to-your-body-to-achieve-some-semblance-of-what-society-considers-to-be-"beautiful".

Yeah, right. A Hollywood blockbuster film is anti-Hollywood. A film that stars a popular young woman as the hero and victor, who has every quality that society considers beautiful, who defeats the ugly people is somehow an anti-beauty film?

Your argument isn't making any sense to me.

Seriously, critique the movie however you want, but don't spread that kind of baseless bullshit around.

Ahem.

Aardvaarkman:

Delcast:
... also, aren't we going a bit too overboard with the accent? We all know you can perfectly speak without it, so why force it so much?

I don't think he's forcing the accent, I think that's his actual accent. He has mentioned before that he has deliberately and self-consciously suppressed his Boston accent in the past. So, if anything, he's forcing it when he tries to speak without the accent.

Anyway, what's wrong with it? I say good for him for speaking naturally, rather than acting. Besides, even without the Boston accent, it's still a variation of an American accent. That variation may be preferable to you than the Boston one, but there's no such thing as spoken words without any accent.

I don't know, maybe. To me it seems like he has begun going a bit overboard hoping it picks up like the UK sardonic reviewer style. It comes out particularly weird when parts of the review have the accent and parts of it don't. I just find it harder to follow and somewhat more conceited/less professional when he goes all bawstin: not only I don't feel it sounds natural (because it is so strong that is almost falls into parody), but it also seems to undermine the content and the message.
Of course political correctness dictates that I shouldn't mention this, but I really find that it hampers his reviews, so I'm not wanting to be offensive, just honest.

In any case I don't mean to criticize the accent itself (or any accent for that matter), but when you are trying to communicate effectively to a wide audience in an online platform, I think it's in your best interest to be more welcoming and all encompassing (at least to a certain degree). Does it water down the authenticity? Maybe... But I suppose great online entertainers learn to balance it effectively.
However! all said... never mind, he's free to do as he wants... and if it bothers me so much I can stop watching his reviews.

Aardvaarkman:

Uh, when did Bob say there was an anti-gay subtext?

The whole Ted Nugent attacking San-Francisco part.

Aardvaarkman:
who has every quality that society considers beautiful

Introversion and PTSD are considered beautiful? :P

Aardvaarkman:
Uh, when did Bob say there was an anti-gay subtext?

Okay then, what else was he implying that he himself said was a bit of a reach?

Aardvaarkman:
Yeah, right. A Hollywood blockbuster film is anti-Hollywood. A film that stars a popular young woman as the hero and victor, who has every quality that society considers beautiful, who defeats the ugly people is somehow an anti-beauty film?

Your argument isn't making any sense to me.

Probably because you didn't read the books, did you? That's right, the story's source material is a book, not the blockbuster. And you're right, they glamorized Katniss as a gorgeous and powerful near-perfect starlet with flawless skin as portrayed by celebrity actress Jennifer Lawrence instead of the pale, under-fed skin-and-bones scrawny unwashed urchin with her curly-haired legs that she hated having to get shaven and waxed every time she was forced in front of a camera. The disgust she would express by ridiculous get-ups and make-up that made the capitol people look almost inhuman in their quest for attention and trends. The insecurity she felt in being forced to fake everything about herself to play to the audience's expectations of her so that she may survive another day in the arena. The outrage she had upon learning at a back-room VIP party that she was expected to use built in facilities for guests to vomit the food they had just gorged themselves upon so that they may continue to eat more.

You're absolutely right, sir. None of this is a metaphor for "Hollywood". At all

Now, I get it, you're only exposure to the series was more than likely the movies, and the movies have clearly shifted the accusing finger less upon the darker side of Hollywood and more towards Hollywood's favorite target: the one percent (though the idea of people suffering for other's entertainment isn't exactly a theme that screen writers could ignore when adapting the books to film). But it's impossible to ignore that the character of Katniss in all her roughness and terrible charisma was meant to be as anti-Hollywood as a character can be, right down to her complete resistance to participate in the rebellion as shear propaganda.

Aardvaarkman:
Ahem.

Excuse you.

wulf3n:
The whole Ted Nugent attacking San-Francisco part.

And you don't think that could be an aesthetic reference rather than a gay agenda thing? I mean, he specifically says, just seconds prior to that, that it would be stupid to consider it an anti-this-or-that message. Did you not hear that bit?

wulf3n:

Aardvaarkman:
who has every quality that society considers beautiful

Introversion and PTSD are considered beautiful? :P

Yes, they often are, but that was not my point. A young, slim, conventionally attractive young woman is not what society considers beautiful? If the message was about anti-beauty, then why isn't the star older, with sagging breasts and missing teeth?

Are you really trying to claim that the star of this film isn't conventionally attractive?

And on the flip-side, the wealthy people seem pretty unattractive to me - caked in makeup, ridiculous costumes and wigs. Perhaps that's your thing, but I think most people would consider a young, fit person who doesn't need makeup to be the more attractive specimen of human being.

TheDrunkNinja:

Probably because you didn't read the books, did you? That's right, the story's source material is a book, not the blockbuster.

You mean the book, which was also a blockbuster?

You're absolutely right, sir. None of this is a metaphor for "Hollywood". At all

So, if the book was so anti-Hollywood, then why did the author allow it to be sold to Hollywood?

If it was all about the poor starving people against the 1%, then why wasn't it distributed for free, or for charity, instead of aiming to make huge profits on the back of popular tropes?

But it's impossible to ignore that the character of Katniss in all her roughness and terrible charisma was meant to be as anti-Hollywood as a character can be, right down to her complete resistance to participate in the rebellion as shear propaganda.

So anti-Hollywood, she was crafted to make Hollywood hundreds of millions of dollars. Yeah, that'll stick it to those fat cat Hollywood types.

Aardvaarkman:

TheDrunkNinja:

Probably because you didn't read the books, did you? That's right, the story's source material is a book, not the blockbuster.

You mean the book, which was also a blockbuster?

You're absolutely right, sir. None of this is a metaphor for "Hollywood". At all

So, if the book was so anti-Hollywood, then why did the author allow it to be sold to Hollywood?

If it was all about the poor starving people against the 1%, then why wasn't it distributed for free, or for charity, instead of aiming to make huge profits on the back of popular tropes?

But it's impossible to ignore that the character of Katniss in all her roughness and terrible charisma was meant to be as anti-Hollywood as a character can be, right down to her complete resistance to participate in the rebellion as shear propaganda.

So anti-Hollywood, she was crafted to make Hollywood hundreds of millions of dollars. Yeah, that'll stick it to those fat cat Hollywood types.

Yeah, it's probably hypocritical of Suzanne Collins.

No, it doesn't make my analysis of the series' theme and message any less undeniable fact.

Aardvaarkman:
And you don;t thick that could be an aesthetic reference rather than a gay agenda thing? I man, he specifically says, just seconds prior to that, that it would be stupid to consider it an anti-this-or-that message. Did you not hear that bit?

It's not saying that he was implying the movie was an "an anti-this-or-that message" but rather he believes that the visual metaphors within the movie imply a fashion obsessed upper class culture as being indicative of the LGBT culture.

Aardvaarkman:

Yes, they often are, but that was not my point. A young, slim, conventionally attractive young woman is not what society considers beautiful? If the message was about anti-beauty, then why isn't the star older, with sagging breasts and missing teeth?

Are you really trying to claim that the star of this film isn't conventionally attractive?

And on the flip-side, the wealthy people seem pretty unattractive to me - caked in makeup, ridiculous costumes and wigs. Perhaps that's your thing, but I think most people would consider a young, fit person who doesn't need makeup to be the more attractive specimen of human being.

It was a joke, hence the :P

So I'm sorry to rain on people's parades, but the book does a really good job of describing the capitol like San Francisco. I give you page 61 of The Hunger Games, in which Katniss complains about the capitol accent:

"Why do these people speak in such a high pitch? Why do their jaws barely open when they talk? Why do the ends of their sentences go up as if they're asking a question? Odd vowels, clipped words, and always a hiss on the letter s . . . no wonder it's impossible not to mimic them." (emphasis added)

While I do not feel this is pushing a feeling of homophobia into the books, the imagery in the books is very strongly San Francisco culture. One thing to remember is that the books strive to maintain that the leadership is the enemy and not the citizens. Although the citizens of the capitol initially represent that leadership, the second book shows them as a different type of controlled people who get just as frustrated with their own leaders. The leadership just uses another tool to control them. Instead of manual labor, the leadership uses decadence and self indulgence to keep the capitol in line. The president keeps them so concerned about stars, celebrity weddings, and keeping their own special rules that they ignore the problems of other places. We see this in our own politics on both sides of the isle. Certain groups will always vote certain ways because they have been promised that the rights of others will be taken away so that may gain or keep their own special rights.

TheDrunkNinja:

Aardvaarkman:

TheDrunkNinja:

Probably because you didn't read the books, did you? That's right, the story's source material is a book, not the blockbuster.

You mean the book, which was also a blockbuster?

You're absolutely right, sir. None of this is a metaphor for "Hollywood". At all

So, if the book was so anti-Hollywood, then why did the author allow it to be sold to Hollywood?

If it was all about the poor starving people against the 1%, then why wasn't it distributed for free, or for charity, instead of aiming to make huge profits on the back of popular tropes?

But it's impossible to ignore that the character of Katniss in all her roughness and terrible charisma was meant to be as anti-Hollywood as a character can be, right down to her complete resistance to participate in the rebellion as shear propaganda.

So anti-Hollywood, she was crafted to make Hollywood hundreds of millions of dollars. Yeah, that'll stick it to those fat cat Hollywood types.

Yeah, it's probably hypocritical of Suzanne Collins.

No, it doesn't make my analysis of the series' theme and message any less undeniable fact.

Or she knows that she will be able to reach a lot more people if Hollywood makes her book into a movie. Anyway, I really don't see her subtext as "anti-Hollywood". All that stuff about Katniss being forced to put on an act, hide who she is, the disgust with wasteful eating is more criticism of the average Hollywood movie-goer than of Hollywood itself. She is criticizing the people who get a kick out of putting celebrities on a pedestal only to tear them down and how the only way for a celebrity to "survive" is to remain popular liked by the masses by any means necessary. Private-life and dignity be damned.

Oh, and while I overall agree with you analysis, you should never EVER call an analysis "fact". It is misrepresentative both of what the word "fact" means and of what an analysis is supposed to be.

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