****There are spoilers in this article if you haven’t seen the movie yet! Also, it might be a good idea to read the books first. In fact, yes read the books first. Its ok. I’ll wait******
I am the kind of nerd girl who was at the opening for The Deathly Hallows Pt2 with my Harry Potter Quidditch shirt, my Goblet of Fire hoodie, and my wand in hand! Unfortunately, though, I am also the kind of nerd girl who leaves the theater when seeing Goblet of Fire pissed as hell that they left Dobby out! What were they thinking! How are we supposed to care when Dobby dies! I even read all of the Twilight novels (yes I hear you all complaining already) and now only watch the movies to be pissed off that they don’t do ANYTHING right in them. I mean, if I were you guys I would be judgy too if, if I am basing my opinion on the series by the big steaming pile of crap that is the movies.
I digress. The point is I am very excited when my books I love to read make it to the big screen. I am also very critical of the things the producers and screen writers change or get wrong. So when we went into the theater to see Hunger Games, fresh on the heels of me finishing the first installment of the book series, I was prepared to be angry, confused, hurt or indignant. What I wasn’t prepared for was to actually be satisfied.
I had been putting off reading this series for at least a year. Everyone told me I would love it (Jared included). In many ways, I was just like my stubborn ten year old, who would also love this book series if he ever read it. Unfortunately, in my head I just couldn’t justify getting involved in yet another series about teenagers when I am still working on my bucket list of Classics, my current obsession with historical fiction, and for fun there is always the new Dexter I have been putting off purchasing. I am a grown up and should be putting away my childish things, right? Wrong! This is the first book series in a very long time that I was so excited for I read 850+ pages in three days. I just had to know where the world of Panem was going!
So apprehensively, scene by scene, I watched the characters come to life. Even though I was skeptical of the casting choices (I’m looking at you Josh Hutcherson), every actor was able to show me how they were the embodiment of their character. I believed Peeta’s love for Katniss, even though scenes were omitted or cut down for time. I also understood adding in Caesar Flickman and Claudius Templesmith as sort of play by play announcers and why they were necessary. I didn’t feel like it was an odd choice or that it took away from the movie at all. And now that I have finished book two, I even get why the gamemaker not only has a role, but a name and several scenes. I think they did an spectacular job on blending things in a way that will make this trilogy amazing for the screen.
On a side tangent, though, I would like to address the racist controversy surrounding the casting choices of Rue, Thresh, and Cinna. I really don’t understand it at all. For the first, simplest, reason I would like to point out that when you are reading the descriptions for Rue and Thresh, there is the description of their skin tone, and her curly black hair. You really have to be a moron to not put two and two together. As for Cinna, I thought it was a weird choice too. Not to be mean, but I thought they were just going for name power on this one, not acting skills. In my head, he was Asian. I don’t know why, there was no description of him other than the way he dressed and his tattoos. Lenny Kravitz did a great job with the few scenes he had, though, and I don’t think any fans can be pissed at that. He played the character the way he was meant to be seen from the book. Most of all, I think that these racist fans missed the over all point of the book. United we stand, divided we fall. We shouldn’t be fighting with one another over where we’re from, what we have or what we look like. I know it sounds corny, but when I was reading this book I never once thought “oh, these people must be white!” nor did I read it on the page. There were descriptions of common features, hair color, eye color, skin tone, but not ethnicity. The worst definition you see is the division between the haves and the have nots. Because of this way Suzanne Collins described her characters, when Finnick arrives next movie, I almost see a mixed or light skinned man with “bronze” hair and sea green eyes, a young Robert Ri’chard. Yes, in fact, I would be disappointed if he isn’t exactly that. So for the Tweeting Twats that say the “little black girl ruined the movie” I’d like to say take a nightlock berry and do the world a favor. We don’t’ want stupid catching fire.