Posted on 6:44 pm,
May 12, 2012

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The latest episode of Hunger Games Chat is here, and it features a special discussion on The Hunger Games VS Japanese book/film Battle Royale.

This subject has come up on the show a few times since its inception, but never this in-depth. We also catch up on the latest news stories.

– In the United States, The Hunger Games is now the top grossing book to film adaptation ever.
– Francis Lawrence has closed his deal with Lionsgate to become the Catching Fire director.
– Why is Lionsgate searching for a new Catching Fire screenwriter?
– Our main discussion this episode is The Hunger Games VS Battle Royale.
– Richard provides us an overview of Battle Royale’s story if you haven’t seen it.
– DID Suzanne Collins steal any parts of the story? Did she even read or see it?
– Is this type of an idea for a story even original to begin with?
– Why The Hunger Games couldn’t do what Battle Royale did.
– Did Battle have too much violence?
– Are the settings very similar?
– We compare the themes in each. For example, Battle Royale is about survival while The Hunger Games is about rebellion.
– Which villain is scarier?
– And the biggest question: Which is the better film?

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This episode's hosts: Andrew Sims, Richard Reid, Selina Wilken

  • Sapph

    YAY! Finally I have something to listen before going to sleep (here is midnight now)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001426435099 Louelle van Rens

    Yay!

  • belac889

    Richard touched on this but can you talk about the Foxface suicide theory? During the training sessions in the movie there is a point made that Foxface knows all the plants. Then Foxface eats the poisened PLANT, just as all the strongest characters (except Peeta) are all that’s left. Please talk about this during the next show.

    • Jason

      While it’s an interesting and entirely plausible theory, I’m hesitant to use movie!canon to back it up. 

      • belac889

        Susan Collins may have told them to add that detail

    • http://hypable.com Selina

      It never occurred to me that this was why Foxface ate the berries, although of course she did have a lot of knowledge about plants. But I don’t personally think that she killed herself on purpose, for two reasons:

      1) After making it through so much of the Games unscathed, why would she suddenly decide to kill herself when there were only four other contestants left? She didn’t know about the Mutts or what else was to come. Being as intelligent and sneaky as she seemed, it would make no sense for Foxface to abandon her plan of staying in the shadows (which had worked great for her) and just give up like that. Of course we can’t rule out a mental breakdown, which is TOTALLY plausible, but there just wasn’t really anything to warrant it at that particular time. Plus, there was nightlock in the forest, so why would she take the ones Peeta had collected?

      2) It’s stated in the book that nightlock only grows around District 12 and 13, and Katniss only knows about it through her father, who was insanely knowledgeable about plants. As intelligent and well-versed in plant life as Foxface was, no one knows the name and properties of every single plant in the world, especially not a young girl in the middle of fighting for her life. Most likely, Foxface didn’t recognise them, and she either didn’t have access to the knowledge or her mentor thought they wouldn’t be brought into the games; this would explain why she hadn’t touched them before, being smart enough to stay away from plants she didn’t recognise.

      That’s just what I think though, it’d be interesting if Suzanne Collins did release more information about Foxface and what drove her to act the way she did. I’ve always found her one of the most fascinating characters in the story. :)

  • http://twitter.com/glasswatar Sarah Sutherland

    There is one main thing I would like to clarify. Battle Royale was implemented as a government military research project in response to an organized student protest against the totalitarian state of the Republic of Greater East Asia. Think of the event as Tiananmen Square where the students rose against Communist China. Also, Battle Royale is a means of terrorizing the population, of creating such paranoia as to make organized insurgency impossible. So, in a way, it is still in response to rebellion and trying to prevent a secret rebel society forming to overthrow the totalitarian state. 

    Also, would like to point out that the two main characters, Shuya and Noriko, liked each other before BR began and they grew more in love because of their circumstances through the entire film. Katniss was pretending to love Peeta throughout the first book. 

    I definitely feel more sadness towards the characters in Battle Royale. These are their classmates that most have been with each other since they were in our equivalent of kindergarten. Also, these students are third-year junior high, what we consider as freshman in high school here. These are younger kids in regards to people like Cato and Katniss, all the same age, who were not prepared at all to fight. 

    I have been meaning to write an essay explaining the differences between these two stories… However, I think I will have to write two, one for the films and one for the books. BR film adaptation is REALLY different than the novel. So, there is so much to consider.
    Also, I need to man up and finish reading the Battle Royale novel. I was only able to read the first 5 chapters of the BR book before I had to put it down because it was way too graphic and violent for me. I have been meaning to pick it back up, but I haven’t had the nerve to. But, I can tell you this. The Battle Royale book has SOOO much more back story and it explains so much on almost every student to the point where it is a little chaotic and, being a foreigner to names, made it really difficult to discern between characters. That being said, I encourage you to read the book, if you can stomach it like I have been unable to at the moment. It is REALLY long, though. 

    I like Hunger Games better in the sense that reading it and watching the movie, I can go to sleep without getting nightmares. After watching Battle Royale, I was extremely unsettled and I have to put the book down after reading two chapters because I am so overwhelmed.

    Very last thing: In the English translated version of Battle Royale, the introduction is written by a certain Max Allan Collins… When I picked up the novel and began to read it, I was very surprised and chuckled at the irony. 

    • Ridhimad

      You should submit a article.

      • http://twitter.com/glasswatar Sarah Sutherland

        I might do it when school gets out… I have finals right now -_-

  • Vane

    Yeah, this discussion is very ill informed since none of the host read the Battle Royale and depended on the film story version, which is very different from the book. So the hosts information about Battle Royale is minimum, I know they’ve been comparing the movie adaptions, the hosts brought up more about the book version of Hunager Games to compare the film version of Battle Royale. So the discussion would be better if the hosts had read Battle Royale.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Seth-Wells/1130513697 Seth Wells

    hunger games has more realistic themes it in, and has more philosophy in it. battle royale not so much. the way the kids die is just for show. the hunger games is to break down everyone make them in cold heartless people, and take away any hope and freewill they may have.there is a much much better chance of the hunger games happening then battle royale. on philosophical level hunger games wins hands down.

    as philosophy major i can say battle royale get points for gore and horrible deaths, i know kids in there know each so do kids in the hunger games if they live in the same district.some of the people in the huger try not to kill other as seen in catching fire, and the first book by allowing others kill each other and buying time hoping they don’t have to like katniss and rue and fox face.

    in the hunger games the government  doesn’t hide anything, well really cant but they show the games to back up the idea that no one can do anything about them and should never fall for the idea of change or else.

  • 7Starrchasers

    I agree with what Selina said about Suzanne Collins..I doubt she had heard about it before, and then realised there was material similar out there…overall awesome discussion guys!

  • Alexis

    This was my favorite Hunger Games podcast to date. Thanks for such an awesome discussion! 

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/GTH55WGYL5NNMJ5XTU7NB447KA Noah

    I disagree with the sentiment that the teacher, the one who is controlling the battle royale, would be scarier than snow. You are forgetting that Snow has a crushing army behind him. If you upset him in anyway, he can torture you to insanity or kill you, your family and your entire district! The teacher is disposable and seemingly holds very little power. Snow, on the other hand, is the most powerful and ruthless man in the country. I’m surprised no one made this point during the podcast.

  • http://frankifoni.tumblr.com/ Franki94

    This was my favourite podcast yet, thanks so much guys. 

    One comment I would like to add, is that this idea has been around for ages, and is even a real thing. Just look at Ancient Rome’s gladiators, and not just the trained slaves that fought, but the countless women and children and men who were convicted guilty of having another religion that were captured and pitted against each other and wild animals AS A WARNING AND PUNISHMENT for not worshiping the Roman gods, and the Emperor. Not only that, but it was a form of entertainment for others. Even in the Middle Ages to the 1800s execution was public, and people would go to watch people convicted of robbery hang. Charles Dickens, a relatively modern author, spoke out against this sick form entertainment. 

    So I think that the Hunger Games and Battle Royale both draw on this age old idea, and how much more despicable do these stories seem in light of the fact that these things ACTUALLY happened? 

  • WhatTheGrace

    I did find whilst watching BR that i got a little tired of the arena and even though it was 3 days it felt like a lot longer, but i appreciated the fact that it still managed to mix in the emotion and terror of the games, whereas in THG the emotional aspects of the games were dealt with during the first half of the film and the only thing that reminded us of how cruel the games is, is i think in the film, when Rue is killed – The games themselves weren’t unbearably horrific, it was more that the other tributes were scary whereas in BR it was a lot more frightening as all of them knew that in the 3 days all but one had to die and if there was no winner they were still all going to die, it turned a bit more into Lord of the Flies than The Hunger Games did the pressure of their environment was a lot more intense. Also the thought of being forced to kill their classmates that they’d known on some level  is just extremely cruel.

    I just had to point out some similarities :
    1. The start of both BR and THG are eerily similar with the narration/subtitles explaining each world’s situation. 

    2. The lady in the bright orange shirt in the video telling them about BR and being so cheery about it had Effie written all over it. 

    3. The injury the main girl had and her having a fever reminded me of Peeta.

    4. The scene where the main character’s having flash-backs about his father; his relationship with his father kind of mirrored Katniss’ and her father – not so much in admiration but their deaths significantly affected them and they’re both haunted by their deaths.

    5. The way the game keeper/teacher appeared in the rain, completely out of the blue is extremely and strangely way too similar to the way Caesar F unexpectedly appeared in the arena in THG during Katniss illusion. Despite being different scenes the randomness in their presences in the midst of what was happening was so odd. 

    And oh the guy helping the two kids reminded me of Haymitch (as mentor)

    I don’t think Suzanne Collins copied/read/watched the book/film but i think someone working on the film definitely took notes. Because most of the similarities that i found were things that were included in the film (THG) if that makes sense.

    I haven’t read BR so i’m talking mostly about he film adaptations of both films
    ….And once again i’ve written an essay lool. Loved the show as always!

  • moomoo101

    i have not read or seen battle royal but i think that it is posable that s.c has not read or seen it too but you guys are rite the hunger game is not the most original story ever and this is another example of along the same storyline the long walk and i am shore that there are a lot more then i know but i think she definitely could of come up with it on her own i suppose it is just a common line of thought which is quite odd 

  • Caroline

    I think that the reason the kids in THG didn’t refuse to fight each other in the begining was that they knew what they were going to do, and they were raised on itt. Maybe there was resistance in the first few years, but in book one, there were 73 games previously.

    Oh, and Richard? Your summary did kind of disturb me a bit… :-( Note to self: if Richard is on an episode, don’t listen to it at night.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=647461744 Adia Lynette

    How can you guys acknowledge that THG are from K’s point of view, but then go on to try and compare the Tributes to the BR kids? For instance, someone said that none of the Tributes refused to fight while some of the BR kids did. How would you know if any of the Tributes refused to fight when the only one’s we really see are Katniss (kills), Foxface (avoids), Peeta, Clove (kills), Rue (avoids), Cato (kills) Glimmer (kills) and Marvel (kills)? There were 16 other tributes that we know nothing about. You said yourselves that the BR kids get a lot more coverage in terms of screen time. It’s not really fair to try and compare the two groups because it requires a massive amount of assumption on the HG side. 

  • Magdalena

    I agree with Selina’s point that it is perfectly possible for several people to come up with the general concept of The Hunger Games independently, considering how prominent the themes it is based on are throughout the history of literature.
    I felt reminded of two more possible inspirations that are much older than any of the the works you discussed in this podcast:

    The first one is a story from ancient Greek mythology:
    After a victory over Athens, the king of Crete punished the Athenians by forcing them to agree to regularly send seven boys and seven girls to Crete, where they were sent into a labyrinth and killed by the monster that lived inside it, the Minotaur. The Athenian hero Theseus later put an end to that practice by volunteering to be sacrificed and vanquishing the monster with the help of his lover, the Cretan princess Ariadne.

    The second connection doesn’t concern the Games themselves as much as the social framework in which they take place: In his sci-fi classic “The Time Machine”, H. G. Wells’ describes humanity as split into two species after a long time of social segregation. One of them – the formerly opressed classes – is clever but rough, the other one – the decendants of the priviledged classes – is friendly but dumbed down. While the latter lives in a kind of paradise of lovely fruits and flowers but doesn’t really care about anything, the former has moved underground, where it operates in secret controlling the species that lives above.
    Obviously, Suzanne Collins didn’t take it that far, since the people in The Hunger Games are still one species, but the general inspiration for that development might derive from there.

    I find these connections fascinating and I am sure they are not coincidental. However, I think it is ridiculous to accuse Suzanne Collins of copying or even stealing – I think the basic plot of the story has been around for so long that no one can claim ownership to it. Which doesn’t mean the books are unoriginal, either. In my opinion, brilliant ideas may and should be re-used, if you can find an new approach to them, which Suzanne Collins certainly has.

  • Amber.R606

    I don’t see how people are saying ‘battle royal’ is the same as ‘the hunger games’. It’s like saying that’ twilight’ is exactly like ‘harry potter’. The books have different themes, characters and storylines then each other. I do believe that suzanne collins must have realised that the hunger games had some points that were in battle royale. I do find Battle royal interesting because it makes you think what if it happened to you. I couldn’t sleep days after watching battle royale. I just kept thinking about what i would do in this sort of situation.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003217053155 Liliana Baptista

    Let’s not forget that the victor in the Hunger Games wins food for their entire district for a year. For the poorer districts, this is life saving. So, the Hunger Games tributes win not only for themselves, but for their district as well…

  • Jacob

    For those who say Battle Royale is hard to read or watch, I’m sorry but your being a wuss. I’m fifteen and have read and watched the book and film. For me it wasn’t that bad. Maybe because I’ve watched numerous amounts of gory films. That aside I love both Battle Royale book and film and The Hunger Games book and film. Yes, there are very strikingly similarities between the both. Wether Suzanne plagerized or not I’m still a fan of both. Which is better? Battle Royale hands down. In my opinion I think BR takes you deeper into the realness of the battle. Whereas THG did not. I think with younger people who read the THG it will desensitize the reader and viewer because there is no gore. The reader will think “Oh this isn’t so bad I could probably handle that”. Whereas in BR the reader or watcher is like “Oh shit, what if that was me and my friends. What would I do”. So Battle Royale is the better book and movie in my opinion. But I will always be a fan of both Battle Royale and The Hunger Games. By the way I loved the podcast. Being a diehard fan of BR there was a few things you mixed up. The movie is different form the book. For those who don’t know what a battle royale is its a wrestling match where a bunch of guys go in into a wring and fight each other. You can teamup with each other but you may want to watch your back because in the end only one can be crowned victor.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=647461744 Adia Lynette

      I think you responded to your own comment when you said that you have “watched numerous amounts of gory films”. Not everyone enjoys that kind of stuff, so it makes sense that BR is not something everyone is interested in. Personally, Japanese-style gore makes me laugh. It’s so utterly ridiculous in my eyes that it is hard not to laugh. The saving grace of BR, to me, was the fact that the kids were friends before being forced to fight. That really gave a serious psychological element that THG does not have. But I don’t see the level of violence as something that makes it superior to THG.

      As for which is the better movie, I think it depends on what you want. Government and politics are much more interesting to people like me. I was practically drooling into my Mockingjay book because I love the idea of rebellion and toppling a barbaric government. The fighting is just a product of a corrupt and brutal regime. If you mainly enjoy fighting and the psychological discomfort in the idea of young people being forced to kill their friends, then yes, BR is certainly the better movie. But for others like myself, the Games is much more interesting.

      They have a similar opening premise, but they go in to completely different directions with that premise. 

      • Jacob

        I don’t necessarily like quote on quote “kids killing kids” what I like about Battle Royale is, if you’ve read the book then you know what I mean when I say the story behind Battle Royale. It’s like when you’re watching an old classic movie where the special effects are hysterically terrible but you look beyond that and see the story. A good example would be The Great Escape with Steve Mequeen the story behind the movie is awesome but the special effects are terrible. So, if you look a Battle Royale and take away the grotesque battle sequences it has a “nice” story behind it. Now don’t get me wrong, I still like THG. I just think the THG was such an easy read it didn’t have that much effect on me. Sure I love like you said the political view of THG with all the espionage with coin. That being said I stand by what I said before I think Battle Royale has the better story and therefore better than the THG.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=647461744 Adia Lynette

          No, I only saw the film because I’m a big Japanese (and Korean) movie fan. I have no interest in the book and will not read it. The story may be good, but people aren’t comparing the two films because of the stories. They are comparing them for the reason I mentioned – kids are forced to kill other kids. I’ve yet to see people really get into the differences in the actual stories. Everyone seems to stop short at the forced killing. 

  • Amélie

    I think what makes BR so different THG is that BR uses classmates as their ‘contestants’ that in my opinion is so much more effective and conflicting than THG where they have randomly chosen tributes.  In terms of having to kill one another off; it is probably a lot harder to kill someone that you know, than don’t know – the only person that Katniss really has conflicting emotions about killing in THG is Peeta they know each other by that point on a more semi-personal level – they have spoken to each other and know each others families and share the fact that they both come from the same district and have the same mentor etc. 
    I would be more afraid of the other tributes in THG than i would be of the arena simply because you don’t know them or know what they’re capable of however i would scared shit-less if i were told that i had to kill my class-mates to survive – it would be hard because the subject of who is your ‘true friend’ will come up as a time will come for you to decide who is your friend and who is not. Also the fact that if there is no winner by the end of the 3 days everyone will be killed would also add to the pressure and you ultimately have to choose between survival and death.

    I prefer THG political background in THG more than Battle Royale but if THG was a lot longer (i mean Harry Potter post Goblet of Fire size) and included chapters of some of the other tributes perspectives, what their homes were like etc. that would have been awesome! Fox-Face would have been the most interesting to read about for sure. Katniss at times felt a little one-dimensional, The BR back-stories were cool, you weren’t just stuck in the perspective of the main boy. If you minus a lot of the prep before the THG and there was extra character content from the books, they could have definitely fit it in. 

    ……..Oh yeah, where was Cato’s song!

  • Kareneh14

    I think it is completely possible that Suzanne never heard of Battle Royale before writing the Hunger Games. There are some coincidences in life (i.e., the book Futility by Morgan Robertson was written in 1898 and is about an ocean liner that hit an iceberg on it’s maiden voyage. Sound familiar?).

  • Michel

    I’ve just listened to an older episode, and since you asked: Yes, I would definitely like to hear more book discussions! I’m sure you won’t have any trouble coming up with topics, but that whole question of possible forerunners/inspirations for THG that you started with your discussion on Battle Royale is definitely worth pursuing further.

  • http://twitter.com/HungerGames4all Rae

    As of today, THG had made $389M domestically which is still a pretty noticeable gap from HP DH:Part2 which made $381M. Looks like THG will make $390-$400M domestically which is still in the all-time top 15, and it’s only the 1st movie.

    Great discussion everyone! I must say though I started watching Battle Royale (before Hunger Games came out) but I just couldn’t finish it. I am gonna bring some of your guys’ points here to support it. First of all, 5-10 or whatever minutes into BR, we’re right in the heart of the action. I don’t know about other people, but I wasn’t impressed. There was barely any explanation as to why what was happening in BR and maybe it was the subtitles or the cheap/fake looking blood and gore or the narration style of old movies, but I lost interest pretty quickly. I guess it wouldn’t be fair for me to compare the two because I didn’t even finish BR, but I still think THG series has the better story because of the emphasis on the political situation and the backstory which BR failed to establish. My main problem with BR was that I just couldn’t relate to it in any way. And I think I lot of people who didn’t like BR probably feel the same way because most people like me aren’t used to violence. But, even if we don’t take the violence factor into account, BR was still lacking in the overall cinematic experience like Richard mentioned. 

    I’ve watched THG 5 times so far in theatres, and every single time I’m equally engrossed in the movie as the last. This is probably one of the few movies that I’ll never get tired of watching. In the end, the only thing that matters is the overall experience of the movie. With BR, 15-20 min in the movie and I was already looking at the clock. Gary Ross is a great storyteller and luckily he was able to string all the pieces nicely. That being said, I do agree with everybody on how THG couldn’t get into the more psychological/ traumatizing experience like BR. I always felt that Suzanne focused more on the political situation rather than the actual traumatizing experience of the games, or at least she set it up that way for the later books. But, in the movie this was the case even more so. I agree with Richard/Selina on how THG is more relatable for us because of how the story is more mainstream and how it reflects our world now esp. Mockingjay. That’s actually one of the reasons why it resonates with so many. It touches some of the more issues that are universal like rebellion/freedom/human rights etc. while BR is more about survival as Richard pointed out. Why is THG more popular than 1984 (which IMO is a better story AND is a classic)? Because THG is written in a that gets the point across without having complicated language. So, yes THG is more mainstream, but that’s not a bad thing. Anyways, THG (the whole series) is a more compelling story because it resonates with us, is a much more believable story, we can identify with the characters, the political situation is not too far from our own. Whereas BR is about survival, and and how to get the kids under control (I think Richard mentioned lawlessness or something)?
     

  • KatnissLovegood

    I really want to listen to this podcast, but knowing that none of the hosts have read Battle Royale makes me not want to listen to it. I am a fan of the book Battle Royale, NOT the movie. The movie does not do justice to the story of Battle Royale. And the movie has a different ending than the book does. If you want to talk about Battle Royale, then let’s talk about the real Battle Royale (book) not the crappy gore film. I would love to listen to a podcast that compares BR and THG books, not movies. I highly encourage you (hosts) to read BR. It will not be a waste of your time, I promise!

  • aimlessA

    You were talking about why the kids in the Hunger Games do not refuse to fight, or do not commit suicide: I don’t think this is really an option since the Capitol would take it out on their family and friends. Look at what happened to Haymitch’s surroundings just because he was being a bit smart… The only reason nothing happened to Katniss’ and Peeta’s families after the first Hunger Games was because it would have even enhanced their martyr image.

  • hypablefan26

    Just an interesting question to think about…What if Katniss’ first time in the games was the Quarter Quell? Do you still think that Katinss would have won? Would she have figured out the clock area without any help?

  • Kathleen

    For some time now I’ve been wanting to read/watch Battle Royale to fully understand why people compare it to the Hunger Games, so I was glad to see this episode! I thought I might wait to listen until after I read/watched Battle Royale but I couldn’t help myself and listened anyways as I was getting ready for bed last night. I’m glad I did! While listening to your discussion, I already started second guessing if I’d be able to make it through the movie (gore isn’t my thing) and I had an awful nightmare last night that I was in an end-of-world situation. I still do want to read/watch BR so maybe I will, just not right before I fall asleep.

  • Voldy

    I remembered looking up long ago about The Hunger Games and saw the ‘Battle Royale’ rip-off controversy kind of thing. So I watched Battle Royale long before the HG movie was released. But if to be asked which is better, I’d prefer The Hunger Games because it has satirical twist to it about reality shows, media, and how the government is somewhat manipulating people. It came to the point while I was watching BR that I thought that it has many similarities, which indeed is true. But I reckon the ‘hunger’ plot and the other Districts being poverty-stricken was really thought-provoking, which you can liken to today’s world.

  • Jessica Lancaster

    I don’t think it’s fair to assume that Suzanne Collins is lying about never having read or seen Battle Royale before writing her trilogy. I find it perfectly believable; I’m a fairly well-read humanities major, and I hadn’t heard of it before hearing it compared to The Hunger Games. 

    Suzanne mentioned that some of her inspiration came from watching “Survivor”, and I find this entirely plausible–when I first heard of Survivor, I was just young enough  to wonder for a second if the contestants really were going to kill each other in pursuit of a million dollars! It’s easy to take the concept of a televised fight/survival skills test to the death to its extreme, especially when coupled with the other instances of killing for entertainment that are found throughout literature and history, or even bull-, dog- and cockfighting now.

  • Amber.R

    I don’t think that Suzanne Collins actully stole the concept of Battle Royale. She had to have heard from it after she published ‘The hunger games’ and then suddenly thought that her book was similar to Battle Royale. I think Suzanne mostly made the hunger games off of the idea of a survival tv show and Greek mythology.
    Now with what is better. I enjoyed Battle Royale becuase it seemed believable. Like that could happen to you. Even though some people said it was gory it wasn’t that gory. Battle Royale was very interesting but I had to watch the movie a second time to actully remember the names and I did get sick of reading the sub-titles.
    I liked the concept of the Hunger games that it was set in this near future where the society had changed. The hunger games was amazing and did stay true to the book.
    In the movie ‘the hunger games’, some parts I was very disappointed. Like with the gift sending. You didn’t get to see the realtionship growing between Haymitch and Katniss through the gifts. In the book, you read that Katniss is literally dying for water but in the movie it just seems like the water is everywhere. I love the Hunger games so much and hopes it lives up to not only mine but everyones expectations. Oh and Richard…I simply think you are awesome. I agree with everything you say..even if it is negative.
    Love the podcast

  • http://www.facebook.com/sebastian.ricolino Sebastian Nebraska-Guy Rico

    Great discussion! Although, I do think you missed what I thinks is a very important point in the two films. What is the drive for the main characters? Katniss is fighting essentially to get back to Prim, and along the way, finds what she thinks could become love. Her reason to stay alive is set in stone from the beginning. In Battle Royale, however, that decision that Katniss makes hangs in the back of the minds of the characters AND the audience. It digs deep into human nature, and the animal instinct within each and every one of us. It begs the question, will your sense of survival take over your serenity or even love for someone else? How selfish can a human being be, in extreme circumstances? Are the decisions we make in such circumstances what define who we really are? Don´t get me wrong, I love The Hunger Games, and I am a fan since the first book came out, and I do think it is an important piece of commentary on society at the moment, glossed with Hollywood special effects and big set pieces. THG is certainly a much more entertaining viewing, as Richard said, but what gets me invested in caring about a film or a book, is the characters, and their relationship with ME as in WHY I care about them. BR´s characters question the audience, with a pointy finger and no way out. In that sense, Battle Royale is in my opinion, the better film.

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