The first of the two new movies in the 'The Hunger Games' series has been released, and it's an extremely fun movie that I thoroughly enjoyed. It's also pretty much what you'd expect from a film based on Suzanne Collins' novel. Although, it did manage to give me flashbacks to watching a few episodes of the show last year!
The movie begins in the middle of the action between the Capitol and the Resistance, with Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) on her way to District 13 to inform Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) about the impending executions of the main characters of the book, namely Gale Hawthorne (Donald Sutherland) and Peeta himself (Edward Norton). Unfortunately, when the train they are traveling on hits a large rock, it's all of their lives that are left hanging in the balance. Luckily, there is one man who can save them...
The first part of the movie concentrates mainly on the rebellion, and how the film fits in with the book. Despite the movies being a bit much, the actual story is at least as engaging and exciting as that of the book, if not more so. To be honest, I think that the movie is better than the book, mainly because the action is much more thrilling, and the tension in the film is far more realistic.
As far as the franchise itself, the story of the first movie in the Hunger Games series is pretty much what you would expect from the books. The rebels work with children in revolt and strive to bring about an end to the tyranny of the Capitol. In order to accomplish this, the children use a form of public propaganda known as the Panem-mockingjay effect, which involves each child working with a Rebel through whatever means necessary in order to accomplish their goals.
Jennifer Lawrence plays a main role in the movie, along with Liam Hemsworth, Willow Shields, and Elizabeth Banks. The movie features a number of familiar faces that I hadn't seen before, and although there isn't too much new in terms of dialogue, it still manages to maintain the spirit of the original book. It's definitely in the same vein as the other films, with Katniss fighting for the right to survive in the arena and be with her friends, Peeta fighting to protect the very people he was forced to leave behind to survive, and Haymitch trying to live up to his reputation as a heartless politician and general evil villain.
The most impressive aspect of the film is that the trilogy is expanded upon as a trilogy in the online television series, 'The Hunger Games: Catching Fire'. This is due to the fact that much of the audience have already seen the film and are interested in the story, the characters, and the story itself. The second book of the trilogy, Catching Fire, also marks the start of the televised stories and will certainly prove to be one of the most captivating parts of the series.
In conclusion, despite having seen the first movie of the series, I still enjoyed the movie quite a bit. It is an exciting movie, and the action sequences are well acted. The look of the cinematography was definitely one of the biggest factors in determining my liking of the film, as I really like the way the film looked.
Jennifer Lawrence as the star of the show is just what the book was missing, along with the acting talents of the whole cast, and the visual effects were just as good as they were in the movie itself. Although I have yet to watch the second film, I'll certainly be catching up on the online series soon, and I'm sure I'll enjoy it just as much as the film.