Saturday, April 21, 2012

"The Hunger Games": Yup, It Works, But Beware If You’re Under 13

I don't think it's suitable for kitties either!

     There’s been a lot of controversy over the R rating for Bully (and I haven’t seen the movie yet), but little has been said about The Hunger Games.  It follows the book closely, which means it’s thrilling, a little long, and extremely disturbing.  If it weren’t so commercial and lauded, it would be easy to say
that it’s a teen snuff movie.  The hunt or be hunted hook follows in a long list of such works as The Most Dangerous Game, Lord of the Flies, and John Dollar, but the teens paying for their own (or society’s) sins with their lives includes The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Halloween and its many followers, and Scream and its many followers.

     My problem with the movie (echoing one of my colleagues’ experiences with it) is that it’s not for children under 13.  This is an instance where the PG-13 needs to be enforced.  Younger children are either going to be shocked or bored by it.  If they suffer under bullying older siblings, it might provide a vicarious thrill, but a couple of the snuffed characters look to be about 10 and I just cannot blithely go along with that.

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