‘Catching Fire’: 5 Things ‘The Hunger Games’ Sequel Needs To Do

Published 2 years ago by , Updated September 3rd, 2012 at 9:39 pm,

catching fire simon beaufoy ‘Catching Fire’: 5 Things The Hunger Games Sequel Needs To Do

Director Gary Ross’ The Hunger Games opened last weekend, crushing the competition at the box-office and coming in third for the largest opening weekend of all time – behind Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 and The Dark Knight (#1 for the biggest non-sequel opening weekend). The questions on everyone’s mind now are: How far will this first installation in the franchise go? And will audiences remain as engaged when the sequel, Catching Fire, arrives?

Certainly, there is a built-in audience for this franchise, but those who have not read the Suzanne Collins series are already beginning to ask: What’s next?

Warning there are some small Catching Fire spoilers ahead:

-

-

-

It is now fairly common knowledge that Peeta and Katniss will return to the games in Catching Fire – the second book in Collins’ series. So having seen the first film, many are wondering how a return to the arena is possible (or interesting). There are certain elements that are native to the source material that make the setting for Catching Fire both complex and compelling – but there are adjustments that the team behind the film franchise can and should make to elevate the second movie in the series.

1. World Expansion:

Hunger Games Revolution ‘Catching Fire’: 5 Things The Hunger Games Sequel Needs To Do

The Hunger Games gave us a good overview of the nation of Panem. We were given a sense of how the districts function in relation to the Capitol, as well as the players involved in the political game of chess that is at hand. The Hunger Games themselves become analogous to the large measure of fear and the small measure of hope that President Snow was using to control the citizens of the districts, and the flashy distractions he utilized to manipulate those who reside in the Capitol.

But in order to keep our interest in Catching Fire there is going to need to be a richer and more detailed exploration into the universe in which the story takes place. A delving into the particulars of the sociopolitical structure is necessary both to capture the audiences attention and because it is primarily the circumstances in the country at large that drive the plot.

In our interview with Gary Ross, the director was reluctant to speculate in too much detail about the ultimate tone and scope of Catching Fire, though Simon Beaufoy (Slumdog Millionaire) is currently drafting the script. The director did concede however that the undertones that are hinted at in The Hunger Games become far more crucial as the franchise moves along.

“Obviously there’s much more political context in the subsequent two books even than there is in the first one, as Katniss becomes a symbol for this revolution. That sort of sinks roots and spreads through the countryside and the books by definition become more political, or gain more political context.”

That political context can only be made clear if we understand the dynamics of the nation in which the film takes place. One of the tricky elements of adapting even the first book was that, despite incessant comparisons to Battle Royale, the games themselves are not the ultimate point of the story.

hunger games jennifer lawrence josh hutcherson ‘Catching Fire’: 5 Things The Hunger Games Sequel Needs To Do

The games serve as the inciting incident, the thing that shakes the main character out of her comfort zone and sends her on a journey which will ultimately lead to a deepened understanding of herself and the world around her. The games, as mentioned, illustrate the socio-political dynamics of Panem. And the games test the moral and emotional limits of the characters, allowing us to understand who they fundamentally are as people. It is more what the games represent that is essential – rather than the events that take place in the arena itself.

The return to the games is a far different journey for both Katniss and Peeta in Catching Fire. Their goals are different, the circumstances that send them there are changed and in order to fully comprehend the choices that are made, we will need to have a firmer grasp on some of the historical events that created the Panem of the day as well as the current culture of the citizens.

The inherent challenge is that Gary Ross made a choice to maintain Katniss’ point of view throughout The Hunger Games, which in some ways constricts the ability to demonstrate the scope of the world. That isn’t to say that we never moved away from Katniss throughout the course of the film, it is only to say that when the film did move away from her it was always with the intent of propelling her story. If Ross cut to President Snow it was because he was talking about something relevant to Katniss. The same holds true for any of the other cut-aways that took place in the film.

There will be an opportunity in Catching Fire to either maintain or break that convention. If the production elects to remain tethered to the first person narrative, then some fairly intricate work will need to be done on the script in order for the audience to both understand and invest in the characters as the events (both in and out of the arena) unfold.

2. Sophisticated Visual Effects:

mutts the hunger games ‘Catching Fire’: 5 Things The Hunger Games Sequel Needs To Do

The setting for the “arena” itself is far more fantastical in Catching Fire than it was in The Hunger Games. The woods are replaced by an Island lush with color and filled with horror. The effects work in The Hunger Games was minimal and for the most part worked in the created world, but there were moments that were less effective for many audience members. The CGI on the “mutts” towards the end of the film read like video game characters to many viewers. In order for us to stay connected to the sense of urgency in the games the effects in Catching Fire are going to need to be sophisticated and believable. Many franchises (particularly young adult franchises) “cheat” in this area because they know they don’t really need expensive visual effects to draw in their audience – but Catching Fire is a story that could easily lose us if we don’t stay grounded in the world and connected to the consequences.

3. Up The Action Ante:

The Hunger Games has a record breaking box office debut ‘Catching Fire’: 5 Things The Hunger Games Sequel Needs To Do

The Cornucopia (the area where the tributes first enter the arena) payed off in The Hunger Games. It was a brutal, moving and emotionally effective scene – but we are going to need that tension sustained for a longer period of time in the next chapter. Some viewers craved a more visceral sense of danger in the latter portion of the games. Creating a sense of urgency and legitimate peril is a challenge in a film that has both a known outcome and requires a PG-13 rating. It is a delicate balance, but it is one that was achieved in at least one portion of the first film, and must be created for a longer stretch of time in the second in order to make a return to the Games worthwhile for the viewer.

4. Develop Katniss:

the hunger games poster ‘Catching Fire’: 5 Things The Hunger Games Sequel Needs To Do

We were introduced to Katniss in The Hunger Games, but if we are going to invest in where the story is taking her we are going to need to see far more of the complex creature that she is in the books. As Gary Ross mentioned, she becomes an unwitting symbol for a revolution. We must come to understand her as a person that has no interest in the finer points of politics, but that just by nature of the circumstances she finds herself in, becomes a leader. Katniss is a girl who has been honed in the struggle for survival and is, by her own admission, dangerous and violent. She is of course also compassionate, has integrity and is unwilling to suffer fools gladly. We need the full scope of her humanity or we will not believe that those around her would naturally follow her lead, or that she ultimately has no desire for them to do so.

5. Increase The Tension In The Love Triangle:

The Hunger Games is like Twilight ‘Catching Fire’: 5 Things The Hunger Games Sequel Needs To Do

Now this is one that some fans may not want to hear, but the truth is that if this franchise wants to keep its female audience (and believe me, the studio does) then this is an area that will need to continue to be nurtured. Some of the increased romantic emphasis is inherent in the novel but the final outcome will rely on the direction of the film. It will be important that the dialogue and tone capture the emotional essence but doesn’t veer so far afield in the sentiment that it alienates the audience members who tend to be less interested in that aspect of the story. Both Peeta and Gale have a strong role to play in the decisions that Katniss makes throughout the course of the story so the connection that she has with each of them needs to be clear and felt. It is a complex love that she experiences and therefor needs to be dealt with some nuance. Additionally, who she ultimately chooses and “why” reveals a great deal about her character.This is, as fans know, not Twilight where the central focus was the romance. The romance plays a role in The Hunger Games as well as the remainder of the trilogy, but it is not the singular, nor ultimately, most important portion of the tale.

Gary Ross did an admirable job of translating this first film for the screen and given The Hunger Games success it would be easy for the studio to expend the minimum level of effort on the sequel, banking on their built-in fan base to turn out. But if Ross (or whoever replaces him if by some strange set of circumstances he does not return) puts the same level of thought and passion into Catching Fire and its needs as was put into The Hunger Games, then we may be granted a rare case where the sequel outclasses the first film in a series.

The Hunger Games is in theaters now.

Follow me on twitter @JRothC

Get our free email alerts on the topics and author of this article:
TAGS: catching fire, the hunger games

113 Comments

Post a Comment

  1. I felt their biggest fault was rushing the ending… I know there are budget and time constraints, but from the moment Katniss leaves the cave to get the provisions, It felt too rushed, half-assed done maybe.

    • Yes, I felt that way too, actually. It was a fantastic movie, but I hope/know Catching Fire will be better.

    • I thought the same thing. The movie was good but I was disappointed with the ending. There’s so much stuff they left out, stuff that was important (like Peeta’s leg, him and Katniss having their talk while going home on the train).

      • I thought the movie was great, but haven’t read the book. I also thought the ending was too rushed. At one point in the film a woman was talking bout how the teens are most likely going to die. I think starvation, dehydration and exposure were on that list. The games didn’t last long enough for any of those. Is there a better reason in the book why they let the dogs loose?

        • They are actually in the arena for awhile, but the film doesn’t make it feel that way.

          The dogs were let out to get the few people left to move into the middle of the arena to fight, having only 3 people left may cause the games to take a lot longer if they didn’t egg them on somehow.

          • I think the dogs were good in the film, made me literally jump from my seat when they sprung out, but I didn’t notice much about their eyes being the eyes of the other dead tributes, like they were in the book…maybe that’s just me not being very observant, but…

            • I don’t think they were made to represent the tributes in the movie like it was in the book. They never mentioned it at all so I think they were more just supposed to be really scary monster dogs in the movie.

        • The Tributes were in the arena for close to two weeks in the book, the movie compressed the time quite a bit, especially in places like the cave. In the book, Katniss nearly died of dehydration near the start of the games because it took her three days to find a decent water source.

          (spoilers)
          In the book, the Gamemakers wanted to bring on the final confrontation between Katniss and Peeta and Cato at the Cornucopia, where there were no obscuring trees and a good show was guaranteed. For Katniss and Peeta, they dried up the stream and ponds and ratcheted up the ambient temperature, to make them return to the lake near the Cornucopia. The muttations were actually chasing Cato, driving him back to the Cornucopia, whereupon they became a danger for all three Tributes.

        • In the book Katniss almost dies of thirst ,and then in the cave later her and Peeta are starving [because of the storm = no hunting] Until they get more sponsors. In the book the Mutts actually have the DNA from the died tributes [color of hair and eyes are same.] And Cato’s death is much slower. The reason? The capitol wanted a dramatic climax in the games and watching Cato get worked over all night – did that. It sped the ending up.

        • What the movie also failed to mention was that the dogs were muttations, used from the dead Tributes. That is to say, the children who died in the games were transformed into mutts. It seemed to be implied that they were resurrected somehow and turned into the beasts. Katniss and Peeta realized the same eyes as the other Tributes were used, and the fur colors matched the hair colors of the others.

          In the movie, they were just like pitbulls from hell.

          So, apart from the mutts being there to finish off the remaining Tributes until the victor remained, they were also a psychologically damaging feature.

          They didn’t kill Thresh, the other District 11 Tribute, though. Cato and Thresh have a fight to the death “off screen” in the novel, during an intense thunderstorm the Gamemakers keep up for the duration of the fight. It alone lasts several days.

    • I agree that the ending was rushed….it didn’t bother me so much about Peeta’s leg but it did bother me when they didn’t play out how he comes to learn she was faking for the games…..I was expecting him to be heartbroken and angry but it didn’t happen….although I did like how Peeta saw Katniss smiling at Gale & he grabbed her hand possesively….but I would’ve liked to see Katniss feel guilty for stringing him along like she does in the book. Its the first time she notices “hey he really does like me….”

    • how about getting rid of the whole shaky camera filming when fighting was going on. that was annoying since you couldn’t even see any the carnage happening. how about show the killings going on not just glimpses.

      • I agree. The shaky camera work was awful. The lead up to and through the reaping was so choppy that I was getting a head ache and couldn’t make out what was going on, it really lost the emotional element because I was unable to see or understand what was happening. Once they go to the capitol it was more stable until the end fight scene where once again it was so choppy one couldn’t see what was really happening. I would like to have been in the editing room when they were cutting those scenes and what the reasoning for the quick cuts were.

  2. I, personally, can not fault the film. I think it was utterly fantastic. I just hope the sequel comes soon. I can’t wait for the ‘love triangle’, but I am always going to be team Peeta, all the way.

  3. I feel like one of the things you should’ve included on this list was to make peeta’s motives clear. for those who havent read the books, peeta could just be a nice boy who wants to make it through the games, not someone who has been in love with katniss for years. and although I agree that the love triangle needs to me more intensified, I dont think the reason is so they can keep their adolescent teen audience captivated, I think it is because it is very influential to Katniss’s actions throughout the rest of the story.

    • I couldnt agree more! The love between peeta and katniss was not shown enough, or her confusion on what to do. She loves both of them. I hope the 2nd movie shows more because it plays a huge part on her actions in the book.

    • I agree Isabel. This is *NOT* Twilight. The romance between Peeta and Katniss needs to developed simply because it largely influences Katniss’ character development as well as Peeta’s. I was so devastated that they left out both the backstory for Peeta throwing the burnt bread to Katniss as well as the scene where he fights Cato off to save her life. He’s such an admirable, strong, dependable character…and that isn’t shown. In addition, these qualities need to shine through so we can understand why certain things play out the way that they do in the future films. Gotta step it up, guys.

      • I couldn’t agree more! Thank you so much for saying that!

  4. u missing number 6. no need of racist fans

    • Exactly. No more racist fans.

      And more people of color. Finnick and Johanna’s skin color isn’t given, so don’t just look at whities. I’d love to see an Asian Johanna.

      • It does say that Finnick has blue eyes though. I suppose he could have colored contacts or something, but that might limit their ability to make him a person of color.

      • That might confuse viewers into thinking Finnick and Johanna are from the same district as Wiress and Beatee.

  5. Also casting a good Finnick will be important. He’s a fan favorite among the book readers and definitely plays an important part. I loved the movie, but felt the characters weren’t as developed as they were in the books. Obviously with time contraint and everything you can’t include everything in the book, but every relationship that Katniss has with each character is important to her and influences her every move. And as a fangirl side, obviously more Peeta and Katniss. :)

    • Yes, they need a good actor to portrait Finnick. He’s one of my favorite characters, I really hope they don’t get Alex Pettyfer to play him, I would also like more Haymitch in the sequel. He is my favorite character and I thought that he didn’t have enough screentime.

      • I’m not feeling the admiration for Finnick, but its so true that they need a super gorgeous actor to play him. He has to be one of those heart-skips-a-beat striking kind of guys…

  6. Well the movie is terrific and I can’t wait to see Catching Fire. IT’s gonna be a blast!

  7. Invest in a camera dolly at least for the non-action shots.

  8. “Up The Action Ante” or “Increase The Tension In The Love Triangle”

    Unless the novels call for them, WHY?! To keep its male and/or female audience?! To sell more tickets?! Isn’t that what sequels, prequels, remakes, reboots, re-release in 3D’s are already doing?! What happened to the integrity of the story and respect to the author?! Do ticket sales control everything… even for a record breaking movie like ‘THE HUNGER GAMES’?!

    Obviously, ticket sales matter or we wouldn’t have investors throw in Billions of dollars to develop the movies that we like or love. It’s particularly important for some projects that are good and/or have potentials. But otherwise, haven’t we learnt our lessons?! ‘Batman Foever’, ‘Batman & Robin’, and re-re-re-…re-release of ‘Star Wars” saga on DVD’s/Blu-Rays and in threaters… to name a few! Why do we like most of latest Super Hero movies so much?! Of course, they have amazing action sequences and special effects! But would we have liked or loved them so much if the story lines SUCK?!

    “Up The Action Ante”…
    What if there were all actions in ‘Batman Begins’ and never really showed how ‘Batman Begins’?!

    “Increase The Tension In The Love Triangle”…
    What if there were love tensions between every single character in ‘X-Men’ series?!

    • Both are inherently elevated and important in the book.

  9. They definitly do not need to up the love triangle thing, OMG this isn’t Twilight and the romance aspect is not what this series is about!

    • A lot of catching fire is a love triangle

    • I agree, I’m not seeing the films (as a female of the targeted age group) for a love story. I don’t need there to be any upping the ante of a love-triange in any way, shape or form. The book’s version of events as Katniss struggles with what to do (the struggle is more about confusion that love, lust or needing either boy) to protect people best. The idea that women won’t see a movie without a romance plot is annoying. I’ve walked out of tons of action flicks rolling my eyes because the love thing was tossed in gratuitously to appeal to some girlfriend, when the movie would have been better with nothing.

      • Completely agree with you Jess. Some of the people leaving comments are saying that it’s important to the story to have them intensify this love traingle. I understand there’s a bit of conflict for Katniss, but to say it’s a love triangle is over emphasizing Gale’s influence romantically on her.Peeta, yes it’s there, but barely at all with Gale IMO. Also, Katniss has way more important concerns than which boy does she love. In fact at the end she <<>> ends up with Peeta not because she was had to be with him but because she was alone and he was still there.
        I don’t know, I guess everyone takes different things away from the story, which is the beauty of reading. A book can be interpreted different ways by everyone, but I just think it can take away from what the message could be if there’s all this extra unneeded romantic tension when there’s the important story of Katniss fighting the capitol to talk about.

        • Also, I want to say I know that the romance between her and Peeta is central to the story, but I don’t think there really was much going on for her with Gale. To me there was never really a conflict, Gale was always more of a friend. While reading the story I never for once thought there was a chance she’d end up with Gale. For a real love traingle you have to think that the person could end up with either person.

  10. Actually, I am SHOCKED that #1 was not “LOSE THE SHAKY CAM”. It left me and many of my friends who have gone to see it completely sick to our stomachs. It’s from the beginning of the film to the end, with only a very small handful of steady shots. I was devastated that he filmed it this way. If 2 and 3 are the same, I’ll have to skip. Everything else was so great – it was shockingly disappointing to have the shaky cam. What a cheap cop-out to good filming; shake it up enough and you can’t tell what your looking at, or how it’s being acted out. Especially true for the final fight scene.

    • I agree and my first thought was “obviously these people CAN NOT fight so we’ll have to improvise.”

  11. WELL I LOVED THE MOVIE THEY SHOULD KEEP FINAL FANTASY TYPE ADVENTURE TO FREE THE WORLD IN WAR WITH ALL THE DISTRICTS TOGETHER

    • There are going to be 4 movies…they have plenty of time to tell the revolution story.

  12. AND MAYBE A SERIES

  13. Absolutely agree 100%

  14. I think they should make the relationship between Peeta and Katniss a little more delvoped. Because although I loved the movie I still wanted to see Peeta and Katniss’s relationship developed a little more .They need to also make Finnick a strikingly hot guy that makes your heart skip a beat.

  15. Sure but lets avoid 5 for crying out loud, i don’t need another twilight film

  16. I will be sad if they push the love triangle.. just for once i’d like to see a movie with people working out their issues as adults rather than it turning into a soap opera-like affair :(

  17. ive noticed that movies where the lead is male, often the female love interest usually is a girl the guy loves and has to convince her to love back, or a girl the guy sees as ‘meeting his match’. in female lead movies, or movies that want to appeal to female audiences, ive noticed the girl never really has to fight much for the guy she wants, its always more of a question of ‘which of these multiple men do i choose from?’ (it happens all the time, even in spiderman 2 and the dark knight) basically for women its always a love triangle and i dont exactly think that sends a good message , but hey, drama gets girls in the seats i guess.

    • couldn’t agree more. Since when did girls start having to choose between 2 guys every time they are in a relationship? Hell, most of the ones I know would choose both. (hahah). But im finishing up the second book now and thought the movie was pretty good. As for the love triangle, well my girlfriend loved it so I guess I cant complain.

  18. This movie was great but they don’t express anything in real detail about how hard it was for katniss to survive in 12 and her and gales dependency of eachother. But also what the bread peeta gave her did to her and how it gave her a new hope. Good movie just hope the sequel illustrates the book a little more

  19. I say Ante up the Political intentions. This will break it away from people calling it a Running Man Battle Royal ripoff.

    Let the “love triangle” hover but not be involved in the purpose of the movie. The book’s genre isn’t ‘action romance novel’.

  20. The love triangle is pivotal to the story, I guess those complaining about emphasizing it have never read the series. It’s what I love most about it and it’s central to everything that happens so it must be developed.

    • I HAVE read the entire trilogy. The “love triangle” is NOT central to the story; survival is. In the first book, Katniss does NOT love Peeta and naively thinks about Gale as simply her very close friend…not realizing the attraction either boy really does feel for her, at least until Peeta reveals his feelings (even then, she doubts that he’s being completely honest). In the second book, she finally starts to admit her deeper feelings for Gale but STILL has, at BEST, a case of “Florence Nightingale syndrome” for Peeta. In fact Peeta helps Gale after he’s whipped to pulp. Katniss is FORCED to marry Peeta.

      Until (at the earliest, the middle of CATCHING FIRE) THERE IS NO LOVE TRIANGLE. The romantic aspect serves the greater (and much more cogent and interesting) story of hopeLESSness in the face of extreme tyranny becoming hopeFULness that the tyrants can be brought down. It is NOT central; it IS supportive.

    • I disagree. Having read the books, the love triangle is of minimal importance. It is a vehicle to explore the decisions she must make (and the fact that she cares enough for Peeta to truly desire to give up her own life for his), but the triangle – such as it is – is pretty low on the totem pole as they say.

      HG just isn’t the romance that Twilight is and that’s ok…my guess is most of the “female audience” to which the author of this article refers is adult enough to get something more out of a story then simply hugs and kisses. HG is a story about survival, the fight against tyranny, and the hard choices that must be made in life in order to succeed. As Suzanne Collins has even said, she could have made her protagonist male or female…the goal wasn’t a girl power sort of story where the woman is portrayed as invincible on the one hand and a needy weakling on the other. Instead, she is given no super powers and she is one wrong step away from violent death. She’s just a human being like anyone else.

      There’s even a particularly moving moment in Catching Fire when she suddenly realizes that she could (and perhaps should?) die and become a martyr and that could be the best thing for the movement as long as Peeta survives to tell the tale (since that falls in with his abilities). One could call that romantic self sacrifice but I would disagree.

      • You and I said almost identical things. :)

      • Disagree. While it’s not as integral or as up front as Twilight, the ‘love triangle’ is still an essentional part of the books. The first half of CF and the first 2/3 of MJ are centered around that triangle. The closing lines of MJ are all about that love triangle.

        “my guess is most of the “female audience” to which the author of this article refers is adult enough to get something more out of a story then simply hugs and kisses.”

        Ummm… The target audience is teenage girls. They don’t care about the political or social commentary, they care about the boys.

        • The target audience is teenage girls? I have to disagree with you on that. The target audience are teenagers, true, but not exclusively female and in fact I know way more adults who have read The Hunger Games than Twilight or even Harry Potter. The Hunger Games is a good example of one of those stories for EVERYONE, and is not meant to be some stupid love story for teenage girls. There’s too important of a message involved with it. Suzanne Collins didn’t get her idea for the story because she thought “O I wanna write a love traingle for teenaged girls!” She came up with the story after seeing reality tv and clips of the war in Iraq on the news. The Hunger Games is more of a social commentary on America than a love triangle.

          • Wrong…. Suzanne Collins read Battle Royale or watched the movie,then said to herself ” Ohhh I can totally steal this idea and call it The Hunger Games”

            • …not really. She has said in interviews (and there is plenty of evidence in the trilogy, itself) that her inspirations and sources were her father’s Vietnam experiences and the Roman Empire (with emphasis on the gladitorial games and imperial rule).

              So…no.

              • So just cause she says this in an interview, then this must mean she got no ideas or probably even heard of Battle Royale???? Have you ever even heard of Battle Royale? Cause The Hunger Games is clearly an american version of Battle Royale. And yea, I wouldn’t deny that she put her own inspirations in her version of Battle Royale (after all there is more story) But the whole idea of children being forced in an arena, grabbing random weapons, and having to kill until there is one left is obviously an idea taken staight outa Battle Royale!…Yea…You are smart :)

              • “I was flipping through images of reality television, there were these young people competing for a million dollars … and I saw images of the Iraq War,” Collins said in a video from her publisher, Scholastic. “Two things began to sort of fuse together in a very unsettling way, and there is really the moment when I got the idea for Katniss’ story.”
                source: http://abcnews.go.com/Entertainment/meet-woman-created-hunger-games/story?id=15970640

                That was from a quick google search of the topic. I don’t know where you got your information from but I can site several other interviews where she says the exact same thing.

                • ….As I said earlier, I wouldn’t deny that she put her own inspirations in her version of Battle Royale.Obviously you have never read the great book Battle Royale (I did, and I saw the crappy movie adaptaion also).If you did then you wouldn’t be arguing with me at all….Fool…. :)

                  • Mb and DR….

                    I read a book about the trilogy (as well as several other sources) that indicated where she got an overall idea for the trilogy.

                    The ONE conceit I’ll give you two (the ONLY conceit) is that I should have added one word and one phrase to my above statement:

                    “that SOME [of] her inspirations and sources were…(…and imperial rule), AMONG SEVERAL OTHER RESOURCES.”

                    Mb, you were at least somewhat respectful in your response to me.

                    DR., you just sounded like a buffoon.

                    Oh, and consider this: BATTLE ROYALE and THE HUNGER GAMES both owe their creation to ancient stories like the Greek myth of the Minotaur in his Labyrinth (and THG, in regard to my earlier comment, actually has a lot of the characters possessing ROMAN names)

                    DR. (I’m guessing you’re not really a doctor of anything; otherwise, I weep for the future of our world if you are able to earn a doctorate): Try harder, Sherlock.

                    • @Archaeon I looked up some of the things you talked about & think you may be right in that those things did influence the story. She has ben quoted as saying that her fathers war experience made her realize the government isn’t perfect & its obvious the character names weren’t made up from thin air (katniss being an archer makes waaay more sense when you find out what katniss is & how that relates). Sorry if I came across as hostile, I think you & I generally think the same thing about the whole love triangle aspect. My main point was just to illustrate that Collins got the initial idea from the war in Iraq & reality tv, though I agree those other aspects influenced the story as well. As far as battle royale being an influence… maybe it is & maybe it isn’t. That shouldn’t take away from the main point of the story. Generally,unless there’s other evidence, I believe what the author says about her own story. If she says she didn’t know about battle royale, then she didn’t know about it.

                    • Mb…

                      Thank you. I apologize if I came across as harsh or curt (hence, my attempt to point out that you were being MUCH more civilized than DR.); I just dislike being called a fool by someone for absolutely no reason. Insulting people grate a bit on my nerves, but my response should not have been directed at you.

                      I believe that Collins’ most immediate inspiration was, as you quoted, the Iraq War; I just also think that these other sources came into play to help her form the novel’s worldview and setup. The people who think she merely copied/adapted BATTLE ROYALE seem to forget that the concepts of dystopia and children used as soldiers/Tributes are not new or original. BR got its ideas from somewhere else as well and is not the end-all-be-all of this type of speculative fiction. I agree with you that, barring evidence to the contrary, Collins may be believed about her sources and whether or not she’s seen or read something.

                      Collins simply managed (quite successfully, I think) to refresh the genre for a modern (or, at least, a CURRENT) audience, and the film, while not perfect, did a fairly good job (again, in my opinion) of translating the first book.

                      I’m looking forward to seeing “Catching Fire” so I can more fairly judge the quality of the overall translation.

                    • This comment is to all-
                      I think anyone would be ignorant to think that two people are not capable of the same ideas. Not everyone in this world has time to troll the internet let alone read the gazillion books that are out there. I have not read Battle Royale but I will say, if the stories are similar yet BR did not get the attention HG is getting, perhaps the story was lacking something that appealed to the masses or just wasn’t as good. Nobody will ever all agree to like the same things which is what makes us all unique. This world would be boring if we were all robots doing, liking and saying the same things.
                      Further – Twilight, True Blood…. both very similar. In fact, even though TB fans state that Stephanie Meyer copied the Sookie Stackhouse novels… both authors wrote the stories at the same time yet it takes years to sometimes get these things published. In the TB/Twi series, I love both of them. So point being I think this whole battle over who stole what idea is a bit tired don’t you think? There are probably at least 50 more people out there right now writing a story similar to both HG and BR who probably never even heard of these two books.
                      And I don’t agree with “owing” our creativity to history. History helps inspire us all with many things in life and we should be grateful but I don’t see anyone ‘owing’ anything.

                  • Wow, calling someone a fool. Classy.

                    At any rate, Battle Royale no more invented the idea of forcing kids into a fight to the death than Twilight invented romance. That would be why there are so many books people are claiming Suzanne ‘copied’ from.

                    Was there a revolution and political commentary in Battle Royale? Nah, brah.

                    • Wow, trying to sound cool and saying something stupid like ” Nah Brah” Yea. So very classy. You are another fool who has not read Battle Royale. If you did, then you wouldn’t be defending Suzanne. Keep it up “Brah”

                    • @Archaeon I completely agree! And yeah, we’ll just have to see how Catching Fire is done.

                      I’ve read Battle Royale and seen the movie. I wasn’t impressed by either, but I can understand the appeal. I think sometimes people get upset because a book they love doesn’t get the attention they think it deserves and then something else comes out that gets that attention & seems similar and it pissed them off. I completely understand that fustration. Of course there are similarities between the two books. Insisting that Collins stole the idea without any tangible proof though is a bit… follish ;). So you don’t like The Hunger Games and love Battle Royale. Ok, we get it. Now can we all move on without bitterness and enjoy what we want without attacking each other?

  21. How about: Stop it with the friggin shaky camera?

  22. For all the shaky camera haters, at least they went on a limb to show what the movie is actually, a fast-paced, action packed, book/movie. And the shaky camera that was tumbling around the trees after Katniss gets stung by the trackerjackers, was her POV…and last time I checked, you woould probably be tripping over your own feet, and spinning around if you got stung by them too…

    • But the book wasn’t fast paced or action packed. Did you forget about the days where she just slept in tree’s or walked around the forest or stayed in the cave? Or all that unbearable and cartoonish time spent at the capitol.

      Just because something is true to real life doesn’t mean it plays well on the screen.

  23. “but the truth is that if this franchise wants to keep its female audience (and believe me, the studio does) then this is an area that will need to continue to be nurtured.”

    Your sexism is showing.

  24. What they need to do is just through out the second book and come up with a better story. Catching Fire is significantly worse that THG (but still not as bad as the POS Mockinjay).

    We visit all of the districts but spend no time in them. So world building essentially non-existent.

    Katniss actually regresses as a character – a trend the unfortunately continues in MJ. She is even more passive and reactive than in THG.

    I didn’t think it was possible, but Peeta does even less in CF than he did in THG. At least in THG he helped Katniss get away that one time. In CF, he is nothing but dead wait. I kept hoping Finnik would kill him.

    Hopefully they focus on the more intersting characters such as Gale, Johanna and Beetee.

    Basically, Catching Fire is a re-hash of THG except that Katniss, Peeta and Haymitch are less likable than they are in THG.

    • They need to throw the second book out, not through it out.

    • Damn, I need an editor.

  25. I enjoyed this movie very much…But hated the shaky camera OMFG! Anyway, I don’t know anything about the books, but the movie still felt rushed. O and I really wanted to see that one guy get shot in the neck!

  26. I just wish that Katniss would be a little more vocal about how she’s feeling, especially in CF since a lot more is brought about her and her actions.

    I guess I was expecting a little more explanation in the movie why she was so cold to her mother and why Prim is more of her top priority. I hope they show / express Katniss’ feelings and thoughts throughout the quarter quell.

    It’s just sad. Why do people have to complain ALL THE TIME that THG is NOT Twilight when the romance circle is being brought up? There’s no comparison. Twilight is a different world, a different storyline. If you didn’t like it, get over it. I loved Twi but that never hindered me from loving THG too. Nobody said Twilight is the basis of quality for future trilogies, sagas, etc. Why do you always have to compare and bash it like you didn’t go see all four of them back then?

    I agree that Katniss’ romantic issues are never the center of this storyline however it is still an integral part of her decisions and fate. Going back to my initial thought, I just wish they would effectively show her emotions in the next movies.

    • because, for (just about) every guy that watched twilight it sucked. Have you seen the broadway musical episode of southpark? twilight is kinda like that. Sooo as a guy that liked the books, even though i did not focus on the triangle and speed read the mushy parts, and thought this would be a great movie. It saddens me to think that they will add more of a love triangle than was in the books just to fill seats. My two cents.

  27. nvr read the books like the movie but reading this makes it seem like a twilight movie. now will there be a survival tournament again in the second movie? do they both get thrown back in the game?

  28. I know its not twilight but still we need a love triangle. Katniss know she has 2guys that feels the same way about her. I not talking about a lot of it. But we all know everyone loves a little romance :) twilight is really good action plus a lot a romance but this more of a action with spit of romance in it.

    • Twilight is more romance with a little action sprinkled in the first three. The last one contained very little action.

  29. oh ok.. thanks angel, but will there be a hunger game again? do they get thrown back in it?

    • Yeah they do,President snow throws them back in to subdue the districts and get rid of Katniss “once and for all”

      • I am just going to start off by saying yes I am female and I am 15 but I am not a girly type at all. I even though I usually hate low movies and I read all the twilight series and Ben though I though they were terrible I kept reading the next book because I wondered never though they are 100% to lovey and girly for me I was curious to see if the other books were better. I personally loved the hunger games books. I think that the cave in the book was a key point that they should have played. The interview was another thing it is when they would be able to tell if it was planned or real and in the book all the tributes are on the Stage together and they can tell it wasn’t planned because katniss blushes and that doesn’t happen in the movie and something they didn’t include kinda irritated me but because I read the books before seeing the movie maybe it is just me being irritated and seriously you guys are immature I’m fifteen and don’t argue about if an author stole another authors idea real mature I don’t care how old you are you guys are acting like two year olds. your worse than my twin cousins who fight worse than I do with my own little brother seriously. I even read both books they are a littler related and our of curiosity I looked at those website an I really think what she said was true.

Post a Comment

GravatarWant to change your avatar?
Go to Gravatar.com and upload your own (we'll wait)!

 Rules: No profanity or personal attacks.
 Use a valid email address or risk being banned from commenting.


If your comment doesn't show up immediately, it may have been flagged for moderation. Please try refreshing the page first, then drop us a note and we'll retrieve it.

Be Social, Follow Us!!