I went to see The Hunger Games last night. First of all let me start by saying I only read the book because my little sister is obsessed with it and made me promise her that I would read it before the movie came out. The book wasn't bad, and it was well written, however, to be honest, I'm really not sure what the big deal is. But my opinion of the book may be a little biased because it is a book I would never have read on my own, as I find the subject matter a little too over the top in it's extremism on desensitization for my liking.
That being said, I think it was a solid adaption...if you read the book. I'm actually really glad that I did read the book first, because I think if I had not this movie would have confused the hell out of me. I think that in it's attempt to remain faithful to the book, too much happened too fast with very little explanation. Also, because so much was happening so fast some of the things that were very dramatic in the book lost their impact. Also I like some of the adjustments that they made and even understand them, but some of them, such as the exclusion of certain characters, and one major event at the end left me a little confused as to why these things were left out.
The other gripe I have about this movie is that they should have let it be rated R. Because in my opinion the book sure as shit is. It completely befuddles me to begin with that the book is considered young adult. But going back to the rated R thing, there were some seriously heavy parts in the book that seemed watered down in the movie in order to honor the PG-13 rating. I understand that it's supposed to be kids doing all of this so they don't want things to be too graphic, but isn't that the point of the book to begin with?
All in all I highly recommend you either read the book before going to see this movie, or go see it with someone who has read it who can better explain the importance of stuff to you.
And on a final note. Seneca Crane has an epic beard!