Caitlin. 23. Illinois.
About Me Caitlin Liveblogs Books You Should Read
Writer. Book Lover. Part-Time Adult.
I'm trying really hard to make this sound interesting.
One thing I’ve noticed during my time on various internet communities is that people are very quick to make odd rationalizations to defend the things they like. There’s nothing inherently bad about it, but it’s certainly something.
The main one I keep seeing is due to the rather critical lens through which I view the Harry Potter film adaptations, but I’m seeing it a lot this weekend too with the premiere of The Hunger Games, and it’s that “it’s impossible for film adaptations to do the book justice in every aspect”.
Which kind of misses the points of contention I personally find with the Harry Potter films altogether, but more than that, it almost sounds like they’re saying that it’s impossible to make a good movie if it’s an adaptation of a book.
Which, as plenty of people can tell you, is pretty silly. There are plenty of film adaptations of books that are arguably better than their source material, or, at the very least, are good for reasons independent of their source material.
The issue that I find with Harry Potter is not that they didn’t adapt it well. It’s that they didn’t prioritize what to adapt well. The films hurriedly cram as many of the exchanges that characters have as possible but neglect overall characterization, and when they change something altogether, they fail to consider how it does (such as Dumbledore’s back story in The Deathly Hallows) or does not (let’s burn down The Burrow for no fucking reason) affect the overall story and your emotional investment in it. They paid so much attention to doing a fantastic job with the art direction and cinematography to create an immersive world, but forgot to immerse you, the viewer, in it, hoping you’d fill in the blanks yourself.
That’s not good storytelling. That’s my problem. Not that they didn’t do a perfect job of putting the books on screen. They just flat-out misunderstood their medium.
I can’t remark on The Hunger Games because I have not read the books or seen the movies, but I can guess with relative ease that they aren’t free of criticisms. And that’s not a bad thing! It’s not! You can be enthusiastic and analytical about something! Take a deep breath. I’m here to help. Shut your mouth.
^^ Probably one of the most concise explanations of my problems with the Harry Potter movies.
I hate that scene with the Burrow with every fiber of my being.
But yeah, even though not everything in The Hunger Games was strictly “by-the-book,” that movie was fantastically made, and I think it really captured the heart of the books, which might be due to the fact that Suzanne Collins helped write the screenplay.
Because for at least the first 12 games, there were districts that didn’t have anyone who had won the games.
Did the mayor help? Were the tributes assigned to a Capitol person? Or were they just thrown in a football field with a pile of weapons and left to kill each other?
That’d be interesting to explore.
I also keep coming back to this idea about what would happen if Gale was chosen instead of Peeta to compete in the 74th Hunger Games. Because honestly….I’m wondering if he would have killed Katniss. Not by his own hand, but if he would have left her on her own, to fend for herself, while caring more about himself. Or if he would have aligned himself with the Careers instead of just pretending like Peeta did, and would have let them kill her. Don’t get me wrong, I know he loved her, but he also was fighting for something. Peeta wasn’t. Peeta was fighting to keep Katniss alive, that was all that he cared about. What would be waiting for him at home if she died? The bakery? But Gale…Gale had his family. Gale knew hunger, he knew pain, and he knew that if he won, his family would never be hungry again.
I think Gale would have been heartbroken if Katniss had died, but he would forever hate himself because there would always be a part of him that, when he saw her face projected into the sky, thought 'Better you than me.'
Maybe I’m too hard on Gale.
That’s so…so…I don’t know. That’s just really bizarre to me. I respect your right to ship what you want, but I disagree highly.
Although Delly+Peeta makes a LOT more sense than Fred+George. That’s just fucked up, I’m sorry.
I seriously do not understand that. I understand that maybe she doesn’t fit the Katniss that you see in your head, but get over it. Go watch Winter’s Bone and realize how perfect Jennifer is for the part.