Monday Morning Quarterback Part IV
By BOP Staff
March 28, 2012
Kim Hollis: Did you see The Hunger Games this weekend? What did you think of it?
Edwin Davies: I did, and I thought it was good but that it should have been better. Gary Ross is a much better director than anyone who has helmed any of the Twilight films, so he brought a basic competency to it that that franchise has largely lacked, and he did a really good job of setting up the world of Panem and getting right into it. The film moved at a very quick pace considering how much heavy lifting it has to do by setting up things that will be important in the later films, but I thought that it did so at the expense of the characters. Katniss, Peeta and Haymitch were all very well defined, but the other tributes were pretty faceless, and even Rue, who is a pretty crucial character in the film, seemed neglected, and her relationship with Katniss felt much less important than it needed to be.
I really did enjoy the film, and I thought that it carried across a lot of what I liked about the books, but I just kept thinking that if the film had been about ten to 20 minutes longer, it could have ironed out those problems and made it a lot more rewarding as a whole.
Jim Van Nest - We did the midnight Imax showing and we all liked it a lot. I'm not a huge fan of the hand-cam feel that the beginning of the film had. (I HATED it in Saving Private Ryan as well.) And I agree with Edwin that several of the characters were shortchanged in an effort to not make this a four hour Peter Jackson opus. With an extra half hour, though, you could have gotten to know Cinna, Prim, Rue and even Gale, Cato, Foxface and the other Tributes just a little better. They would have been "fuller" characters and everything would have had more depth to it.
That being said, when you love the subject matter, you can watch a film of any length. In the real world, though, you just can't make a film of this nature over three hours in length.
My one last beef (and it's similar to the hand-cam thing) is I can't stand the need to have such tight close-ups during fight scenes in today's films. Everything's so close and the cuts are like an MTV video editor's wet dream, it's sometimes hard to see what's actually happening. Especially when the fight we're watching is between one blonde kid wearing black and another blonde kid wearing black. Seriously, pull the camera back and let us just see the fight unfold.
All of this, though, is minor for me. I really liked it and I can't wait for Catching Fire.