I finally saw The Hunger Games this weekend after many months of pushing against the current of the pop culture river that's been flooding the landscape of our consciousness. You'd think that a pop culture lover like myself would have been there on opening weekend to see something with such a following, but I wasn't interested. And now I wish I hadn't seen it at all.
I was never on board with this film or the books the films are derivative of. I know the premise, I know it's not necessarily anything new. It's basically The Most Dangerous Game but with children killing each other. And it's that last part where I have issues.
I don't have any interest in participating in a story about children killing children. I don't care that it's making a profound statement about both the society of violence we live in and the filth that so many people engage in watching on television. (Which I do believe it does and does so incredibly well) I certainly don't think weaving a love triangle into the story of needless death makes it more enjoyable or even more meaningful. If anything, it's white-washing the world's most horrible act in order to make it a sanitized story "appropriate" for the masses.
No, I haven't read the books and I won't be either. I know millions of people really enjoy the books and are drawn to how well written they are and how engaging they are. To each their own. But as for me, I can't bring myself to put my psyche through the thought that an 18-year-old is snapping the neck of a 12-year-old because it's okay to do so, which in the confines of this story, it's perfectly accepted and expected to do so.
So, I'm sorry Hunger Games. I won't be participating in watching any future films or reading any books. It grieves me too deeply to do so. In a world where we have real teenagers killing each other and themselves on a daily basis, I can't entertain even a fictional version of the same injustices.