Adaptation Report: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

Do you believe in love at first sight? I didn’t think I did until I watched The Hunger Games: Catching Fire because OH MY GOD IT WAS ACTUALLY PERFECT.

I know that you all know this already since this came out ages ago, but as I said previously I’m going in order of books/adaptations I have experienced since moving away and this is next on the list so deal with it!

I don’t think I’ve ever left a theatre so satisfied over an adaptation since Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows pt. 2 (another adaptation I was super satisfied with will be coming up at some point, okay? Okay). It was the type of movie that made me fall in love and crave the books again even though I’ve already read the series multiple times…so that’s what I did – I re-read Catching Fire and Mockingjay.

And you know what? I was even more pleased with the movie after I re-read the book because LINES FROM THE MOVIE WERE TAKEN DIRECTLY FROM THE BOOK! WORD FOR WORD! Okay, time to calm down.

In all seriousness, when you watch something that is taken from a book you read and loved so much it means the world when dialogue stays intact, casting is perfect, and the storyline isn’t too drastically altered. Knowing that Francis Lawrence is directing Mockingjay Part One and Two makes me so hopeful that he can take the (overly rushed) final instalment of the series to a fantastic finish – hopefully giving it the time to develop it needs since he gets to play with two movies (be still my beating heart).

We need to talk about casting for a minute here – no, not about Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, and the rest of the original cast that returned because we all saw the first movie and knew we had nothing to worry about when it came to greatness from this group.

It’s the newbies.

Jena Malone was cast as the oh-so-fiesty Johanna Mason, a fan favourite in the books, and she ROCKED the character. I don’t think I’ve heard anyone complain about that casting. She brought Johanna to new heights and really sold her attitude perfectly. Also, the elevator scene. Perfection.

And then there was the casting that everyone was looking forward to – the casting of Finnick Odair. At this point almost every fan had input on who they thought should play the bronzed, godly victor and in the end the role went to Sam Claflin. I was into it right away – right age, right look, it looked really promising. Others weren’t convinced…until they watched the movie. Claflin was Finnick – he brought to life probably one of the most liked characters in the series.

The casting directors for these movies seriously need an award, a medal, a cookie, or something. ANYTHING.

I think the one thing I wish was included in the films was Peeta taking charge when training for the Quarter Quell. A lot of people came away with Peeta being a very weak character in the first film, when that is so far from the truth. Adding in him as a leader would have enforced how important Peeta is to the story and how strong and smart his character is.

Well since this is a report I need to give this a grade. This adaptation definitely deserves a solid A in my opinion. Here’s to hoping Mockingjay gets an A+…and we get a bloody trailer soon.

Where does Catching Fire rank for you when it comes to movie adaptations? (And more importantly) how long do you think Lionsgate is going to make us wait for a Mockingjay trailer? Let me know in the comments below!

Bonus points if you can guess what adaptation I alluded to earlier.

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