Thursday, 5 May 2016

We are all the same when in power – The Hunger Games

Last week I finished watching The Hunger Games film instalments though to be honest I am yet to read the books. I’d been looking forward to knowing how it all ends and more than that, to answer all the questions as to what would be happening to the characters next, as well as who Katniss Everdeen would eventually choose between Gale and Peeta, the two men in her life. Ten points to the novels’ creator for keeping us always on edge and unable to make even an educated guess about what would be the ending to the love triangle story. I must also say I was heartbroken at the deaths of characters I had come to prefer and those also of lesser known characters who had still portrayed so well the harsh reality of a war.

Which brings me to the two points I want to tackle today. As followers of this blog would know, I love analysing stories, be they in book form or on the screen, and The Hunger Games proved to be a pleasant surprise in that rarely did I manage to guess what would happen till it actually did and there was no way I could have predicted that what starts out as a contest intended to keep the Districts from ganging up on the Capitol would eventually turn on its head to give us just that – a rebellion.

As with all rebellions, the line between right and wrong, just and unjust, becomes pretty hazy for the Allies just as it had been for the elite from the Capitol, which wrongful prejudices were ironically the reason The Hunger Games and even the rebellion happened in the first place.

My second point is exactly this. Without going into detail in order to avoid spoilers, I have to say this plot follows George Orwell’s theory from Animal Farm, which is that anyone in power is likely to abuse it. What starts out as a set of Districts suffering under the rule of a seemingly cruel master, turns into a war which, once started, made of the District people blood-seekers no better than the Gamekeepers in The Capitol’s employ. Leaders are always out for power and few are incorruptible. Not everything is always what it seems and when it comes to gaining rule, everything becomes fair game. So welcome to the world of The Hunger Games, and also to the real world.

1 comment:

  1. Great observation, especially the part where you describes the alienation into division between districts. The famous Roman Empire rule, divide and conquer.

    The two powerful emotions to keep the audience watching a movie are hope and fear and the author made a great job with that. We get attached to many characters in Hunger Games, many of them are brutally killed and we cry and wish they weren't. Katniss represents hope, but she also represents balance.

    In Hunger games, the dictator leads by fear. He owns the people, he makes human sacrifice to his name, literally, because he said that it's a necessary sacrifice to commemorate peace kept by his soldiers. Silence is not peace at all, it's more the silence before the storm. Peace is the freedom of one's mind and soul. A balloon allows some squeezing, squeeze too much and it will burst. When people are exposed to brutality they get afraid, but when they experience it, they retaliate. That is what gave rise to the rebels. Their district was obliterated, many lives were lost, they have nothing more to lose and have to keep hidden to survive. The rebels despise the ruling class, which is very plausible. The greater the oppression, the greater the revolution is. It is like a bull charging at the red cloth, once you charge, it will be hard to stop the inertia, and very easy to go overboard. A revolution should stop the moment it reaches a balance; if you kill their leader, there is no need to kill the rest will they will eventually surrender.

    Katniss is that balance. Devoid of any ambition for power and doesn't act on impulse, she took a hard decision in taking the burden all on herself when she saw there was no other way, she killed the leader of the rebels and in doing so, she stopping the tide and did not allow the balance to tip over again.