Picture from novelnovice.com.
Having read all the Hunger Games books, I decided I would watch the first of the movies. It was actually very well done, which was surprising. Typically, movies adapted from books tend to be quite poorly done, because the books often contain a depth of information that’s just not possible to contain in a two-hour film. That wasn’t the case here – almost every major story element was present, and the characters were true to form (though not as deeply fleshed out). There wasn’t as much detail on Panem and/or the Districts as was present in the books, but I suspect this will be remedied in the movie quadrilogy (they’re splitting the last book into two movies) as is needed.
The acting was well done, if a bit wooden at times (especially the two male leads), and I was pleasantly surprised by the choices for Effie Trinket (played admirably by Elizabeth Banks), Cinna (played well though not enough by Lenny Kravitz), and Haymitch Abernathy (Woody Harrelson). Jennifer Lawrence played the titular character of Katniss Everdeen responsibly.
The story itself is a good one, and how it ends is as important for the book/movie as a conclusion, and as well as setting up the rest of the series. I won’t spoil it here, but if you’ve read the books you’ll know exactly what’s coming and why it’s important. I’d say this movie would be about four stars out of five, and I’m looking forward to the next one.