Monday, January 13, 2014

From Page To Screen (62) The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

 
This week on From Page to Screen I tackle the Blockbuster Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins.

First Let's Discuss The Book
Catching Fire is a novel written by Author Suzanne Collins. The book was originally published September 1, 2009 by Scholastic. Catching Fire is the second book in The Hunger Games trilogy. Upon release reviews for Catching Fire were mixed to positive. Most critics agreed that the action was top notch but where the book faltered was spending too much time focused on the romantic triangle of Peeta, Katniss and Gale. Catching Fire's initial print run was 350,000 by the time February had rolled around it had grown to over 750,000.



Let's take a look at some of the characters.

Katniss Everdeen- Due to her voluntary role & subsequent win of the previous Hunger Games Katniss unwittingly becomes a symbol for rebellion amongst the oppressive capitol.

Peeta Mellark- After winning the 74th Hunger Games alongside Katniss, Peeta embarks on the Victory Tour, an event strategically timed in-between each Hunger Games, where the victors visit the other 11 districts. The Tour is used as a way to keep the citizens under the Capitols thumb while reminding them that another games is soon to begin.

Finnick O'Dair- Male tribute from District 4. Now 24 Years Old it has been 10 years since he initially won the games. Finnick becomes Katniss and Peeta's ally during the 75th Hunger Games. Finnick is known as a Sex Symbol and has a reputation for having bedded down with many Capitol women since his win.

Now Let's Discuss The Movie.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is a film directed by Francis Lawrence. Catching Fire was released November 22, 2013 by Lionsgate Entertainment. The film cost around $140 million to make and as of this posting has earned $846 million worldwide. Catching Fire released to positive reviews setting records for the biggest November opening weekend and biggest three- and five-day Thanksgiving box-office totals, surpassing the first film's box office grosses. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is the first film in 40 years to top the box office while having a female lead.


Major Differences Between The Book Film
BookFilm

Since Peeta can't swim it is Finnick who stops and guides him to dry land.
Peeta can swim. He fights and kills another tribute under water before making it to dry land.
Darius becomes an Avox after defending Gale. He is a servant to Katniss while she is at the Capitol. He is omitted.
Katniss wants to start an uprising against the Capitol.Katniss doesn't want to lead an uprising but she is fine with civil unrest.
Katniss kisses Gale one time. President snow later tells her he knows about the kiss. President snow shows Katniss a videotape of her and Gale kissing.
Before embarking on the tour Katniss frets over what to say to each District. She ends up speaking from the heart instead. Effie hands them pre-scripted cards. Katniss decides to speak from the heart instead while Peeta agrees to read from the cards.
Katniss gets drunk with Haymitch after learning she'll be returning to the Arena for the next games. She has a hangover the next day.Katniss only has one drink and is fine the next day.
Gale is whipped for trying to sell a poached turkey at the Hob.Gale tries to stop the new Peacekeeper from beating someone at the hob. He is later whipped for interfering.
While doing research Katniss and Peeta find old footage of Haymitch winning his Hunger Games.This doesn't happen. 
Six parachutes are sent to Katniss, Peeta and their allies.They only receive one parachute.
The victors have to develop a talent to showcase during the tour. Peeta's is painting but since Katniss doesn't have one they pretend it is Fashion.This is partially omitted.
At the end of the tour Katniss attends a party at District 12's Mayors house. She sees an alert that District 3 has started rebelling against the Capitol. This doesn't happen. 
While in the woods Katniss finds two refugees named Bonnie and Twill whom tell her about the status of District 13.They don't appear at all.

The above mentioned are some of the major differences I noticed when the book was taken From Page To Screen. Which do I prefer though? While I do enjoy some of the scenes in the book more, particularly those with Heavensbee as a whole I enjoy the films much more. Jennifer Lawrence is just brilliant as Katniss as is most of the cast. I also enjoy the changes made by Producers of the film as Catching Fire in my opinion is pretty weak story wise compared to the first book. This is no doubt because Suzanne Collins actually had to create a story rather than just "borrow liberally" from other works already in existence. While I'm still Team Gale I'm starting to warm up to Peeta and this is definitely because I really feel the connection between Josh and Jennifer whereas in the book it felt very forced and fake. I suggest reading the book at least once even if just to see how some scenes were cut differently on screen. However, if you really wanted entertained than the film is where it's at.

Still not convinced? Check out the trailer below!
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Well that about wraps up this weeks From Page To Screen. Have a recommendation for an upcoming From Page To Screen, let me know in the comments below!

Have you read the book or watched the film? 
Which did you like better? Why? 
What is your favorite quote or scene from Catching Fire? 
Are you Team Peeta, Gale or Finnick?

Leave your answers in the comments below, I love to read your responses. Like what you see? Please share!

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