Skip to main content

A Joint 'Hunger Games' Review

A Joint Hunger Games Review Effort

by LizRo and Britt

“I need someone who’s cultured, 

who I can actually have a conversation with—

no offense to you, LizRo.” —Britt Kemp

I went into The Hunger Games expecting as much as a nun on the pill. Having not seen so much as a preview, I was one of a rare few whose first impressions of the story were unveiled at the theater. I grasped the premise of the story as it unfolded on the screen.
From jump, the film was visually quite striking. Elaborate costumes and intricate sets (used to depict the story’s metropolitans and their luxurious living spaces) would later illustrate that, in fact, no attention to detail had been spared in the making of this film. The opening scenes featured a post-apocalyptic world reminiscent of The Dust Bowl, though the theme of poverty was starkly juxtaposed against occasional hints of technological advancement, like television and spaceships. 
The film has some opening dialogue that takes place in a wooded area between Katniss  Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and her hometown boy toy. My initial reaction was that the conversation sounded painfully scripted. I was skeptical. (Though this improved as the film progressed).
It would be remiss to fail to mention the first appearance of Effie Trinket (Elizabeth Banks)—a character whose introductory scene might be equated to the unleashing of Cher on a community of pilgrims.

Effie was the audience’s first preview of the story’s city dwellers. Color-coordinated from the eyelashes down, her bold appearance was a shocking contrast to the bland, impoverished peoples we’d come to know in the story thus far. 

Some reviews have called her Gaga-esque. I was reminded of James and the Giant Peach’s Aunt Spiker. I inspected for signs of poor dental hygiene, but was almost disappointed to see that she had decent chompers. From this, I inferred that she wasn’t as evil, (or grotesque) as the character I had associated her with.

A scene in a light rail car sheds light on the disparities between those living in the city and those living in the districts. The car is exceptionally lavish; we begin to fully sense the framework being laid for the film’s political themes—the film sends a loud message about power and corruption.

Skip to the next best part: Cinna, as played by Mr. Lenny Kravitz. Here’s a man that set my 7th grade panties on fire. Call me tough to please, but I wouldn’t say his acting was phenomenal. Although—let’s be real—this man could have been reciting an instruction manual and I’d have gotten behind it. 

The Hunger Games then present the audience with another unsettling dilemma: tributes face brutal, unfavorable circumstances—pitted against one another, exposed to the elements, and subject to manipulations by game overseers—for the purposes of entertainment value. The film’s presentation of television coverage concerning The Games is so eerily familiar, the audience is nearly forced to consider our own society, reality TV, and, ultimately, the surprising plausibleness of such a scenario. 

We take comfort in realizing that our heroine is a force for justice. She befriends a young tribute, Rue (Amandla Stenberg). I may be partial to talented, positively adorable 13 years olds, but I found her performance to be among the best in the film. 
[If you haven’t yet been made aware of the disturbing controversy surrounding the film’s cast, the following article has been floating around the internet:
It should go without saying that these reactions to the movie are truly revolting. It’s disturbing that this film—which raises questions about social equality, humanity, and justice, no less—is now the source of racial controversy. Discrimination’s presence in our society is utterly frightening.]
The final surprise: We have yet to see Katniss truly serve self-absorbed, power-hungry city folks their asses on a platter—the movie ends with a cliffhanger.  This is a series? You have got to be fucking on me. Yeah, I got hosed. But, the only thing worse than being “the girl who’s so socially challenged that she unawarely signed on to a sequel,” would be being “the girl who’s so unfortunately lame that she only saw the first movie.” 


Whereas LizRo put a lot of time, thought, effort, energy, and old down south wisdom into her review, I am a girl that runs on no sleep and energy drinks. So how is that working out for me? Not well! Thank you very much!

We went to go see the Hunger Games because the world would not shut up about the Hunger Games. I thought maybe we would like the Hunger Games or maybe we would just seem, really, really COOL if we went to the Hunger Games. Just like errrrrrrrrrrrrybody else.

 Really solid reasoning? I know. That’s why they put us in the GIFTED PROGRAM.

Approximately three hours after seeing the film that everyone was getting hard over, just about everyone, I have to say, I was made a firm believer in my oversized theater seat in that the Hunger Games- not so much Twilight or even Harry Potter, which to me, always felt just too whimsical and overdone- was a series of considerable merit. Even if other people have done it just a little bit better, even if other people have had the same sort of concepts and thinly veiled critiques put forth audiences before.

I have not read the books. My sister has and she loves them. My sister also reads Twilight. E tu, Brute! 

But now. Now, I might have incentive to read them. When I remember how to read.

It amazed me how political The Hunger Games were, as LizRo so articulately captured before me (thanks bb). Like- the themes, the motifs, etc. Classism is the biggest issue easily, followed NEXT by voyeurism a la of the reality TV genre. Racism, which I don't believe was so evident in the book (from the little I know of it) was definitely featured in the film....having Rue be African American (Pan American? um) and then the riots that she caused....was a little bit of an uncomfortable flashback to the ongoing civil rights struggle that we as a country probably will never overcome at this point. All in all:  there's a lot of deep thinking for kids going on in this. It's pretty incredible.

Which is why I was, furthermore, not surprised to hear it's on a lot of those dreadful "BANNED BOOK" lists. like really? REALLY? God forbid we make people think, God forbid we try to introduce our children to the theory that the world really isn't a pretty place. That there are the haves, and the definite have nots. Which is life. 

By the way, I like how I'm starting every sentence with which. WHICH.

Catniss is sort of like the medium of a female heroine we need....she isn't a pushover like Bella, but she's not quite as crazy and brutal as the girl from Dragon Tattoo. Catniss is a strong moral lead, a strong feminine lead. and kicks ass when needed to. Also, the dude that is nailing Miley Cyrus is TOTALLY in this film. Liam? He's dreamy, I have to say. And Lenny Kravitz is great, too. It was Rue that won my heart the most...keep an eye out for that little girl in the future. SHE'S GOING TO BE A STAH.

So, now come my complaints:


Seriously, while LizRo sitting next to me, all I could think about omgIgettohearTaylorinamovietheaterHOWCOOLISTHAT! Because really "Safe and Sound" is dope. And to me, the song fits perfectly in the film. But did I hear it? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. I was so upset about it. I still am upset about it. I will be on my deathbed, upset about it.

- some of the actors kind of....blah. See LizRo's comment about "scripted."


- and we missed the trailers, which have nothing to do with anything, but like what the hell, man. I could watch a movie that's all trailers and be TOTALLY satisfied. like, smoke a cigarette and ask the trailer-movie, "was that as good as it was for me as it was for you?"

Long story short:  I can't wait to see the next installment of this. FUCK YEAH SERIES MOVIES WOOO

Conclusion:  9 out of 12 District Tributes

I love how this post is entirely white. Carry on!


  1. loved the reviews. didn't know about the whole racism controversy. that's crazy.

  2. Crazy to say the least. We love you, thanks for the feedback.

  3. we love you like the child we never had. OH WAIT THAT'S THIS REVIEW <3 lylas


  5. it's all LizRo's genius brain!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

3 New Lana Songs Come Out From Upcoming Album "Blue Banisters"

Not even that far off from "Chemtrails Over The Country Club" being released this past March, Lana Del Rey dropped three new singles off her upcoming project, "Blue Banisters." They include the title track, "Text Book," and "Wildflower Wildfire." All three songs seem to merge the worlds of "COCC" with "Norman Fucking Rockwell," specifically Lana's mouthful of a track "Hope is a Dangerous Thing for a Woman Like Me To Have But I Have It." They also seem uncharacteristically more confessional than most of Lana's catalog to date, specifically "Wildflower Wildfire," which alludes to a conflict with her mother. She even starts the track with "Here's the deal," readying to show more of her backstory than she ever has in her decade-plus-long career. The three songs are gorgeous - especially "Text Book," which has a haunting quality to it (she mentions "Black Lives Matter" i

Tusse releases French Language Version of "Voices"

In case you missed Eurovision this past weekend - and if you're an American, you likely did - there were some truly talented acts among those competing for this year's prestigious title. There were some pretty boring acts, and there were only a few of truly strange contestants this time around (bummer).  Sweden's act Tusse was pretty talented; his joyful and uplifting track "Voices" was actually one of the few that seemed rather memorable to me. Turns out he's releasing it in French - which makes sense, as Tusse is Kongo-Kinshasa born. Tusse is enormously popular in Sweden from what I can tell, having won both Melodifestivalen (Sweden's precursor to Eurovision) and Swedish Idol. He's a talented guy, and I'm sure we're just seeing the start of what is bound to be a long and prolific career.   (you might not be able to watch this outside of Sweden so, see below) The French version of "Voices" is available for streaming here .  Also, whi

"Round the Bend" - Zoon (Beck cover)

My favorite album of Beck's has long been "Sea Change," for approximately the 20 or so years it's been out. I would probably regard it as one of my personal favorite records, for its wistfulness and its beauty. When I heard about Zoon (aka Zoongide’ewin) - the musical project of Daniel Monkman - covering the "Sea Change" track "Round the Bend," I was somewhat skeptical simply because the album holds such a place in my heart. Now, prior to hearing about this cover, I wasn't so familiar with the work of Zoon. And now, I've got to say, in my best Owen Wilson - Wow.  Apparently we both hold the 2003 Beck album in high esteem. Said Daniel about "Sea Change," "After my first listen I was so moved and at the time I was going through a pretty bad break up and this album helped me process my depression. Throughout my time away from music I’d always have a copy beside me; it kept inspiring me that I could try any kind of music style. I