Will the Hunger Games Movie Win Over Those Who Haven't Read the Books?

Brow Beat
Slate's Culture Blog
Nov. 14 2011 12:02 PM

Will the Hunger Games Movie Win Over the Uninitiated?

Jennifer Lawrence in Hunger Games.
Still of Jennifer Lawrence in 'The Hunger Games'.

© 2011 - Lionsgate

Today Hunger Games fans get the fix they’ve long been craving: a full-length trailer for the film adaptation. While the teaser that debuted in August offered a small peek at the much-anticipated movie’s look, showing Katniss (played by the 21-year-old Jennifer Lawrence) hacking her way through some Appalachian woods, to the uninitiated it came off as little more than B-roll for Winter’s Bone.

Here we get something far more expansive—and even as someone who’s never read a sentence of the Hunger Games trilogy, I’m intrigued. From the forest we move to what looks like a steampunk Auschwitz; then we get a larger glimpse of the more futuristic dystopia that forms The Hunger Games’ universe.

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The coiffure (and, especially, the beards) do get a bit sillier as the trailer goes on—and it’s a little distracting to see Lenny Kravitz in a dramatic role (more appealing presences: Donald Sutherland and Stanley Tucci).

Still, after the Battle Royale-style competition breaks out—and after the trailer quickly cuts to a Harry Potter-style musical theme over the movie’s logo—I’m, well, hungry for more.

What do you think? If you’ve read the books, does this trailer look true to their vision? If you haven’t, does it make you care?

Forrest Wickman is a Slate staff writer.