‘Hunger Games: Catching Fire’ is an intense, fast-paced experience

Jennifer Lawrence is back in the hunt in 'Hunger Games: Catching Fire'
Jennifer Lawrence is back in the hunt in ‘Hunger Games: Catching Fire’

[rating=4]Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson, Woody Harrelson, Donald Sutherland
Writer(s): Screenplay by Simon Beaufoy and Michael Arndt; Based upon the novel by Suzanne Collins
Director: Francis Lawrence

When The Hunger Games was released in 2012, the talk around town was how a story that involves killing kids could keep a PG-13 rating in order to attract the audience that propelled the original novels to the top of the bestselling lists. The filmmakers were creative. Violence was shrouded by foliage. The filming, choppy and chaotic.

Read more‘Hunger Games: Catching Fire’ is an intense, fast-paced experience

‘Life of Pi’ more than just a 3D treat – it’s complex, profound and highly intelligent

The all-CGI Bengal tiger, Richard Parker, will have you believing in movie magic in 'Life of Pi'
The all-CGI Bengal tiger, Richard Parker, will have you believing in movie magic in ‘Life of Pi’

[rating=4]Starring:  Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Rafe Spall, Adil Hussain, Tabu, Shravanthi Sainath
Director(s):  Ang Lee
Writer(s):  Screenplay by David Magee, based upon the novel by Yann Martel

I’m a big proponent of reading the book before seeing the movie so I felt a bit hypocritical when I plunked down the $15 for my ticket to Life of Pi having no knowledge of the plot except for the snippets I caught in the trailers and the little I knew from my feeble attempt at reading it a few years ago. The novel, by Yann Martel, had won the Man Booker Prize and the movie, directed by Ang Lee, was getting rave review everywhere I looked, so I figured I couldn’t lose.

Read more‘Life of Pi’ more than just a 3D treat – it’s complex, profound and highly intelligent

Forget ‘Twilight,’ ‘The Hunger Games’ is the real deal

Jennifer Lawrence and Liam Hemsworth in 'The Hunger Games'
Jennifer Lawrence and Liam Hemsworth in ‘The Hunger Games’

[rating=3]Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Stanley Tucci, Lenny Kravitz, Donald Sutherland
Director(s): Gary Ross
Writer(s): Gary Ross, Suzanne Collins and Billy Ray, from the novel by Suzanne Collins

I cringed when I heard that Lionsgate was producing The Hunger Games. Not because they don’t produce good movies – I love their films —  but one in particular came to mind. It was all I could do to scream  “No! Not them! Please don’t let them turn this soon-to-be- classic story into a festival of shirtless teens and bad acting!”

Fear not, Hunger Games fans. This ain’t no Twilight.

Read moreForget ‘Twilight,’ ‘The Hunger Games’ is the real deal