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Tag Archives: Josh Hutcherson

The Hunger Games

In Panem, sometime in the future, a long-standing reality television show “The Hunger Games” recruits its candidates for the coming season. This is a game show with a difference – two “players” are selected from each of 12 districts that were isolated after an unsuccessful rebellion, where the nation’s underclasses now live. The “players” must fight each other (and the challenges that arise from the game-show itself) to their death, until only one player remains – the Winner. In Area 12, very young Primrose Everdeen (played by Willow Shields) is selected, but her protective older sister Katniss (by Jennifer Lawrence) takes her place. She and the other teenage Area 12 player, Peeta (by Josh Hutcherson) are taken to the Capitol for the game where they learn the game’s rules and some tactics, then after audience introductions and a major promotional launch, play commences in the vast holographic arena. The citizens of Panem watch the show play out on live television, commentated by the game’s charming host (by Stanley Tucci) while the players fight for their lives …

I didn’t think I’d like this movie and it wasn’t what I was expecting at all, but this is pretty good. Perhaps not quite up to all the media hype of the time, but still it is very well made and the concept is thought-provoking. The human nature revealed by the characters is interesting and the drama is very well developed. The way the “arena” is stage-managed by the television show brings an additional layer of intrigue to the story – and that the entire viewing audience watch these “players” struggle for survival is bizarre, but still you feel a need to watch. A small point – it is too long, but still very good and easily watchable. As our charming game show host, Stanley Tucci is excellent, but as usual he goes along under the radar. Jennifer Lawrence is very strong as Katniss, our heroine. Great to see a cameo by Lenny Kravitz and the young Amandla Stenberg is very good – she was nominated for a Black Reel award for Best Breakthrough Performance for this work, well deserved. Cinematography is excellent – the action sequences are very well done. The movie is based on the book by Suzanne Collins.

Made in 2012. Directed by Gary Ross

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Posted by on May 10, 2013 in Movies

 

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The Kids Are All Right

Sometimes the label of “comedy” really mystifies me when it is applied to movies. This movie is an example.  Nic (played Annette Benning) and Jules (by Julianne Moore) are a long-term lesbian couple who each conceived one of their two children from the same anonymous sperm donor.  Nic is a doctor, she is an older, more practical and controlling partner in the relationship, whereas Jules (who has not yet settled into a career direction) prefers a less structured approach to life.  At 15, their son, Laser (by Josh Hutcherson), decides he wants to meet his biological father and persuades his 18 year old sister Joni (by Mia Wasikowska) to go through all the legal steps to find him. They have success with this and meet their Dad, Paul (by Mark Ruffalo), a still single restaurateur. The two women later meet him and they tentatively form an uneasy new group.

The film explores the relationships between all these characters – it includes betrayal, anger, pain and poignancy. I do question the presence of “comedy”, some of it is quite tedious – but I suppose it could be found laced through the realistic relationship between the totally different personalities of the women, the challenges of parenting and miscommunication with their teenagers and the the single 50 year old biological father caricature.  The performances are all great – the women play out the foibles of their relationship perfectly, the teenagers are typical and the father is a believable type of guy.

Yes, I’d say this movie is Alright.

 
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Posted by on January 3, 2012 in Movies

 

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