Movie of the Month: The Hunger Games

By Stephen Rebello

Is Hunger Games worth all the hype? Stephen Rebello and director Gary Ross think so.

Director: Gary Ross

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Studio: Lionsgate Films

Hollywood hopes The Hunger Games erupts into the next Twilight-size money machine. Based on the first of Suzanne Collins’s trilogy of best-sellers, the flick is set in a dog-eat-dog dystopia in which a teenage girl must compete against 23 other kids in a brutal fight for survival—all televised as must-see entertainment. The much-anticipated adaptation stars Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson and Lenny Kravitz. “It’s harrowing, riveting, terrifying material, but there’s also emotional depth,” says director Gary Ross. “Shooting scenes such as a girl sent through a burning forest or one we filmed vertically at the height of a 150-foot tree was really compelling. It all hinged on Jennifer Lawrence, who is a freak of nature. She floored me. If audiences get the sense that they’re walking in her shoes and they care about her character as much as they did in the book, that’s the measure of success.”


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