The Hunger Games

I've heard a lot about The Hunger Games, but haven't actually read any of Suzanne Collins' books. The central conceit -- people hunting other people, last one alive wins -- has been done before, and as variations on zero-sum games like the Prisoner's Dilemma go it's of limited interest to me. 

I saw the movie anyway.

It was powerful, wonderful, and horrible by the numbers. I disagree with some of the central premises, but was able to suspend my disbelief and sit through the film. Since I didn't know how the book ends (I assumed the protagonist lives, but that was the end of the hopeful thoughts I entertained) the movie was free to surprise me.

It did. All in all, they made a pretty good movie which I did not like very much. I'll go ahead and take the moral high ground and say that I don't want to be entertained by depictions of children murdering each other.

I won't be taking my own kids to see it, and I don't recommend it to yours. I've been led to understand that if you've read the books this film will serve as a nice visual reference and a sort of synopsis, but large, important themes are absent (note: "I've been led to understand" means "I talked to somebody who read the books." Don't mistake this for an expert opinion.) Maybe those themes would have allowed me to enjoy the film a bit more.

My rating system doesn't grant allowances for brilliant cinematography that I dislike, so Hunger Games is sub-Loraxian. My favorite moment in the film, by far, was the trailer for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter