“Hunger Games” author says “Catching Fire” is war appropriate for young adults

I love, love, love the “Hunger Games” novels by Suzanne Collins. My mom and sister first told me about them several years ago with a warning: “Invest in a book light. You won’t be able to sleep until they’re finished.”

They were right. I devoured all three and couldn’t way until the movies came out. As with all book-to-big screen series, I was a little apprehensive at first when I went to see “The Hunger Games.” Would the actors portray the characters well? Would they stay fairly true to the story? (Is it going to be so…gruesome?). Besides the scene with Rue dying (I think they could have done an even better job with the lullaby and having Katniss sing!) I thought it was fantastic. And I couldn’t wait to see the next one.

And man oh man-”Catching Fire” is definitely even better than the “Hunger Games!” Usually the second movie is not quite as exciting. Second novels are sometimes difficult to  keep “ablaze” because you are trying to elaborate on a story while not giving everything away. Second movies that follow this pattern as part of a three or four-part series can sometimes fall flat.

NOT “Catching Fire.” In fact surprisingly, I liked watching the movie better than I enjoyed reading the book. It was fast-paced, exciting, easy to follow, great cinematography and CGI, and the characters really came into their own. I would HIGHLY recommend this movie for teens plus (parents, you’ll have to decide what age is best. It’s rated PG-13.)

One last thought…isn’t it ironic how the books are based on this morbid government-controled “game” that involves children killing each other, and that they make into a huge entertainment show…and that we are all equally as excited about in real life and can’t wait to see? Are we no better than the people from the Capitol?

Francis Lawrence, director of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and Suzanne Collins, author of The Hunger Games TrilogyPeter Hapak for TIME 

Just a thought. I wonder is Collins is smiling to herself, thinking, “Joke’s on you…”

For a detailed interview with Collins in which she discusses her reasoning for writing a “war appropriate” story for young adults, visit http://entertainment.time.com/2013/11/19/writing-war-appropriate-stories-for-kids-a-conversation-with-suzanne-collins-and-francis-lawrence/#ixzz2lhAHTGnG

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