On the evening of November 21st, 2013 I was thrilled to go to the opening night showing of Catching Fire. Catching Fire is the 2nd book in the trilogy by Suzanne Collins. My review of the book is here.
Catching Fire is the continuing story line from The Hunger Games. Now Katniss and Peeta are living back in District 12, still pretending to be in love when in front of the cameras and about to go on tour of the districts as is their duty as the winners of the last Hunger Games. President Snow has a strong disliking for Katniss, feeling that her heart and her fire for what is right could bring on an uprising, he keeps a close watch on her and monitors what she can say and do when on screen and in front of the people of the districts. In the midst of this battle of Katniss and Snow, a plan is developed that all the tributes will enter the Hunger Games as a “Quarter Quell”, a twist to the 75th anniversary of The Hunger Games.
And this is when this movie really comes alive.
Katniss, played by Jennifer Lawrence shows such appropriate emotion throughout the movie that I could not help myself but feel anger when she felt anger and yes, cry when she cried. (Way to go new director Francis Lawrence!
As the tributes from all districts prepare to go back into the games, Peeta and Katniss are sure that there is no way they will allow for two victors again. Love or just deep friendship, the two struggle with how they will handle this when the time comes.
Cinna, the creator of the costumes that both Peeta and Katniss wear comes up with an amazing dress for Katniss, which if you have read the books… you know… well…. we will save that for the spoiler page
All in all I found this movie to be even better than Hunger Games and that surprised me. Of the books, Hunger Games was my favorite and they went down from there. Not that I didn’t still enjoy them, just that was the order they fell in for me and so I did not expect this movie to be loved by me to the extreme that it was.
If you are a fan of the books, do not miss out on seeing this one on the big screen. I am pretty sure as soon as I can find someone to go with, I will be seeing it again.
Want to talk about the movie in a bit more detail? I have wheeled the Spoiler Button out of storage so we can do just that! If you HAVE seen the movie, join me in the spoiler room to discuss what we loved, what we didn’t, and everything in between.
Katie (actress Julianne Hough) has had enough of walking on egg shells whenever her husband, Tierney (David Lyons), is near. The abuse both physical and mental raises to such a level that Katie fears for her life. One night she decided there is only one thing she can do.
After cutting and dyeing her hair, Katie seeks shelter in a small North Carolina town where townsfolk are curious about this newcomer who keeps to herself and has rented the small home in the woods on the outskirts of town. Alex (Josh Duhamel), a widowed store owner seems particularly curious about Katie, as she turns down any offer of help he gives for home improvements or transportation. Eventually Katie befriends another single girl named Jo who lives not far from Katie and becomes a kind of confidant.
But as Katie is starting to relax into her new life, Tierney has not given up on looking for his wife and the longer it takes to find her the angrier he becomes. Practically psychotic with thoughts of her with someone else he finds a clue that sets him in the right direction.
Holy awesomeness! When I read Safe Haven a few months back, I was so impressed by the book that I was nervous about the movie not living up to it. I need not have feared. Once I put this DVD on, I stopped everything and just watched.
Safe Haven was beautifully done, and while you may think you have it all wrapped up in a neat “Sparks like” bow you will (oh yes you will!) find yourself blown away by a plot twist that is ovation worthy and really took me for a loop – yes, even after I had read the book. I loved this movie. The acting was well done, I was fully engaged in the story line – Tierney was every bit of whacked out creepy that I felt he should be for a crazed abusive nut case husband (think Sleeping With The Enemy creepy… and then double it).
I hope you will consider renting or purchasing this movie. Not only is a good cold evening chick flick, it also would make for a good couples or girls night in showing. I was impressed and I will definitely watch this one again.
Thank you to 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
for the review copy of this movie in exchange for an honest review.
Jerry Renault is sent to a Catholic school after his mom has died. The school is very strict and has a yearly chocolate sale that all students are EXPECTED to participate in. Brother Leon gets it in his heard that the school can bring in a lot more money if they double what they sold the previous year making it 50 boxes of chocolates sold by each student.
Jerry finds himself mixed up in an encounter with the schools “gang” called the Vigils and he is instructed not to sell chocolates for the first ten days of the sale. Jerry complies and creates a very annoyed Brother Leon when Jerry does not do his part.
The real kicker is that after the ten days, Jerry decides he has had enough of people telling him what to do and when to do it so he continues to refuse to sell the chocolates on principle. It should be a choice to sell. Not an order. By doing this Jerry creates an uproar in the school of support that angers the Vigils who feel this is like a slap in the face to their control of the school. As time passes the Vigils work hard to gain control pushing kids to sell their chocolates making Jerry an outcast and eventually leading to what is referred to as the chocolate war.
I read this book this last October for banned book week. The book was banned due to the strong content, language, and deemed unsuitable for the age group it was written for. Of course, I loved it. ♥ There is a powerful message within The Chocolate War.
The movie, made in 1988, was well done. Ilan Mitchell-Smith does a good job of portraying Jerry, a boy who appears meek on the outside but has a strong sense of right and wrong on the inside. The head honcho for the Vigils, Archie (played by Wallace Langham, now on CSI) was also very good at his role. I felt the same emotions watching the movie as I had reading the book. I felt unsettled and angry at times. And in the end, neither the book or movie leave you with a feel good “all is well” feeling… you know.. that there is more to be done, and in this case, that is an ok and appropriate feeling.
I would say I enjoyed them both just about equally. The book was one I have wanted to read for a while and I was glad I finally got to it. The movie, was the big finale for me, to see it after reading it was perfect. I feel I can talk about The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier with some knowledge and opinion.
If you get the opportunity, I recommend reading The Chocolate War and then treating yourself to the movie. Perhaps maybe, for this next Octobers banned book week?
As readers/book lovers I believe we take the reading experience quite personally. From the discussions I have had here at Book Journey to the discussions I have participated in or just read all over the web, books can touch our very innermost soul. They make us laugh, cry, become angry, and take us to places we may never step foot in if not for the book. The characters become a part of us… we may know them, or wish we could know them. Some books cause us to wear t-shirts saying ‘Team ______________”, and some make us publicly defend their honor. Some books stay with us for years afterwards, and just thinking of them brings up fond emotions as we gush to a friend, “It’s one of my all time favorites!”
Now… let’s say (Insert a Favorite book title here) is going to become a movie. Enter Joe the Director (yeah, for this post we will call him ‘Joe’). Now Joe has big – BIG ideas of how he is going to turn your beloved book into a movie. He has a vision and you start to hear and see the hub bub of who might play this character or that one….
BUT (and it’s a big one, I will not lie) what if this Director, Joe Whats-his-face’s vision does not line up with what you or I had felt was the heart of the book? What if Joe takes the book an entirely different direction and now what you loved, what you admired, seems to be gone…
Are you in camp:
A. I hate it when my favorite books become movies – it ruins what I loved about the book. I do not see movies that were made from books.
B. I am so excited when a book becomes a movie, I LOVE to see what they will bring out on the screen and how their vision may differ from my own.
C. I am ok with a book becoming a movie as long as they stick true to the nature of the book – like when ____________________ became a movie.
D. I have no opinion either way…. I am just reading the post to see what you are up to.
I would love to hear your thoughts on this subject. Can you choose a camp you fall into? Can you name a book to movie that was extremely successful in your opinion? Can you name a book to movie that was an epic fail?
For the second time this afternoon, I went to see Breaking Dawn II at the theaters. I would have reviewed it when I seen it opening night but life busyness has not made it possible until now.
And believe me when I say I want to review this book.
Like most Twilight fans I have read the books a long time ago. I have heard the feedback on books and the movies, even have written reviews for all three books. I have watched the movies and have understood the jokes people had made of them – but let me say… no matter what you have thought of the Twilight books/movies in the past, this one is worth seeing.
Visually the movie is amazing. Everything that has true up to this point pulls together for a dynamic finish that is in a word….
Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner, and yes, Kristen Stewart (she must have read the online comments) were at top game. The supporting actors are pretty incredible too and we are treated to many new faces. While we did not get a gratuitous shirt removing from Jacob (Taylor) like we were treated to in Breaking Dawn part 1, we are treated to many laugh out loud moments, as well as intense ones. It’s a good mix.
The ending – well, the ending is BRILLIANT. I can say nothing more than that, I can say – readers of the books and fans of the movies alike are in for a real treat.
My final thoughts…. treat yourself to this finale.
Fact: Edgar Allen Poe was found walking the streets on October 3, 1849 in clothes not of his own, delirious and calling out the name “Reynolds”. He never became coherent enough after being found for anyone to know the cause of his distress or to even know what had made him this way and he died on October 7th – one of the sad and unsolved mysteries of our time…
Edgar Allen Poe. The poet. The writer of Gothic Fiction, deep and dark and appealing to the public masses. A man tortured by his own soul and the hot pursuit of the love of his life, Emily.
Meanwhile, gruesome, unthinkable murders are taking place in the town and Police Detective Fields is finding a familiar ring to the way the murders are taking place, the way the crimes are being set up… they are as Poe has written them in his fictional stories, down to the last detail. Edgar of course is shocked and mortified that someone has taken his dark writings and created true crimes out of them, he agrees to help the Detective try to solve the crimes and capture the killer by deciphering clues that are left either with victims or delivered mysteriously into the hands of the detective or Poe.
As each clue is unraveled Poe’s inside track on the stories help the police move into the next spot quickly but only to find yet another clue. The murdered is quick and knows Poe’s work well creating a fast paced and heart pumping mystery that will keep you guessing until the end.
John Cusak has come a long way since the first movie I remember him in, Better Off Dead. He has really grown into his characters and his role as Edgar Allen Poe is brilliant in The Raven.
I have to say going into this movie I did not know a lot about Poe’s life or death for that matter, never a big fan of poetry although familiar with his work of course, I admit to never having read it. I do love it though when fact meets fiction and when I discovered the opening lines of the movie are actually factual regarding how Poe had died in such a mysterious way, I had a good (and turns out accurate) feeling that this movie was going to be a good one.
Fast paced, I love how the move took pieces of Edgar’s work and wove them into the crimes. It reminded me a bit of Copycat, another amazing movie of crimes being copied, in that case it was a serial killer copycat.
I really was impressed how this all came together, I did not have a clue who did it although now after having read a bit today about Poe’s real life and death I think I may have been able to have made an educated guess.
HIGHLY recommended to those who love a good mystery to solve. I was very impressed with the entire movie.
Sherrie Christian was just a small town girl… living in a lonely world. Then she took a midnight train, going anywhere….
(lol… ok 80′s peeps… I had to use that because well…. that pretty much is the story..)
But oh yes, there is more.
Sherrie is hoping to make it big with her voice in LA but her start turns out to be a little more rocky than rock and roll. When she meets Drew, he invites her to apply for a job where he works at the once famous Bourbon Bar where at one time they raked in the big names – including giving Arsenal(Ton Cruise, errr…. Stacy Jaxx’s band) their big start *insert swoon here* …
Payin’ anything to roll the dice… just one more time…
Meanwhile, the mayor and his wife, are all about shutting out the awful rock and roll music down as part of their “cleaning up the city” program and Patty (Catherine Zeta Jones), the Mayors wife has an odd obsessive desire to start with The Bourbon and Stacy Jaxx.
Some will win…. some will lose… some were born to sing the blues….
what happens next… is pure… rock and roll.
I am die-hard loves of all things 80′s (leg warmers, aerobics, Music, big hair, and yes, Bubble Yum) and I… didn’t think I wanted to see this movie. :shock: I thought the preview was a big cheesy, a bit musical….
but then a friend of mine said “Best movie I have seen in a long time”, and I was sold on giving it a try. Then I watched it a second time with my husband. Then a third time with College Son…. then probably watching it again tonight with both sons.
Rock Of Ages is not only song upon song on awesome 80-ness (my word), it is also many great stars…. Alex Baldwin’s role will shock you and make you laugh, fans of Russell Brand will not be disappointing in his brilliant portrayal of Bourbon Manager Lonny, and love him or hate him – you are bound to be impressed with Tom Cruise who – (I looked it up) sings all the songs himself and had written into his contract that he would not allow any voice improvements… just pure Cruise…. and I was impressed.
Rock Of Ages is a funny look at the 80′s, a semi cheesy love story in the mix but that is sooooooo 80′s and some quick wit mixed in (watch the dance moves closely when the ladies are dancing in the church) and I do love me some quick wit!
My hubby who usually falls asleep half way through movies actually likes this one which is a testimony in itself!
Over all rating… a big visually risky in points but no foul language, and no sex (implied but not seen)
80′s fans… you are going to LOVE it.
Eva Khatchadourin is a smart, fun loving free spirit who falls for and marries the more conservative and level Franklin. When Eva finds herself pregnant she is unsure of herself for the first time in her life, never really feeling the “mom gene” like so many women do.
When Kevin is born Eve continues to struggle as she tries to master parenthood and finds herself failing time and again. Kevin cries and cries no matter how she rocks him or feeds him or takes him for long walks in the stroller. Exhausted and frustrated she shares her feelings and concerns with Franklin who feels that Kevin is just doing what babies do and she needs to lighten up.
As Kevin grows, his manipulation towards his mother does as well, ignoring her when she tries to teach him things but lights up when his dad enters the room. Years later when Eva finds herself pregnant again she fears for the safety of her baby daughter, Celia. An accident that happens when Celia is around 5 makes Eva wonder if it truly was an accident. Her feelings towards Kevin puts strains on her marriage.
Through letters Eva shares her concern through the time that Kevin is born, all the way through to the school massacre when Kevin kills seven of his fellow students in high school.
My book club and I read this book in May of 2006. At the time this book was a book in the bag from the library where we could borrow 10 books at once. My notes from that years review says,
We Need To Talk About Kevin was a different style of read for us. This book led to a deep discussion about motherhood. While some in the group questioned if Eva’s love was real or put on for her son, others felt that Eva felt her freedom was taken away with the birth of Kevin. While most of the group found the book to be hard to read due its topic and content, I enjoyed it – finding it frightening and an honest portrayal at the same time. On a scale of 1 -5, even now I am surprised to see that over all average of this read was a 4. (I remember it as most of the group not liking it and now looking back I see that while a hard read, it seems to have been appreciated.)
The thing I remember most about We Need To Talk About Kevin, is that Kevin is not likable. He is dark, manipulative, cruel, and moody. I can not even imagine what it would be like to be his mother. Honestly, I don’t know how much I could have taken if I had a child that treated me that way. If you have even read Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Piccoult, while the story line is similar, the boys in the stories are not. In Piccoult’s book (was his name Peter?) the boy is picked on by his school mates. He is a sympathetic character and in the end, honestly I felt bad for him. Not so in We Need To Talk About Kevin. In this case I feel bad for his mom.
The book all these years later still sticks with me. A hard read, but I think an important one.
Just this past week I rented the movie version that came out earlier this year of We Need To Talk About Kevin. And after renting it, it sat on the end table for about a week. I could not get myself in the mood to watch it. I knew from the book that it was a hard story and as much as I wanted to see how it compared to the book, I knew I had to be in the right frame of mind to handle it.
When I finally did watch it with my hubby, I found the beginning to be confusing. Told differently in the book it started with a series of flash backs and forwards and to current time that if I had not read the book I dont know if I would have followed. Even having read the book, I struggled as I tried to explain to my husband what was happening in the first 30 minutes of the movie.
When the movie finally does get to the story of Kevin it levels out and is much easier to see what is going on and what the past and present flashes mean. John Reilly plays the part of the dad and that threw me off a bit as I am used to him playing all these goofy roles in movies – or maybe that is just the movies I seen him in. Tilda Swinton (The Whole Witch in Narnia) however felt spot on.
I recommend read the book, and then watch the movie. Both are spectacular.
Matt King is a lawyer based in Honolulu and the sole trustee of a family trust of 25,000 acres of pristine land on island of Kauai that has been handed down from generation to generation. The trust will expire in seven years so the KIng family has been taking offers in from developers. Just before the family is about to endorse the deal, Matt’s wife, Elizabeth, is in a jet ski accident that leaves her in a coma.
Matt and Elizabeth have two daughters, 10-year-old Scottie and the rebellious 17-year-old Alex. Matt has been a “back up” parent throughout the girls lives and now he is thrust into the driver’s seat as things are not looking good for Elizabeth.
When Matt is told that Elizabeth will not be waking up from her coma he has to tell his daughters, and an angry Alex blurts out that Elizabeth has been having an affair. Matt confronts close family friends who confirm this.
As Matt tries to make sense of all that is happening he is left to deal with his daughters who are hurt and feel betrayed, his own family that is waiting for Matt to get the papers in order to sell the land, his wife’s family who think if Matt had been a better husband Elizabeth would not have been such a thrill seeker and of course, now this mystery man who has been seeing his wife.
I received a preview screening of this movie from Fox and after seeing it was up for awards this year, I was curious about it.
Starring George Clooney as Matt, there is a lot going on in this movie. With beautiful scenes of Hawaii, this is a story of love, and family, and hard decisions. While on the outside Matt’s life looks like the life to have, this whole movie is about a closer look… a painfully close look into a family’s life.
One of my favorite quotes comes from Matt King:
My friends on the mainland think just because I leave in Hawaii, I live in paradise, like a permanent vacation. We’re all just out here, sipping Mai Tais, shaking our hips, catching waves. Are they insane? Do they think we are immune to life? How can they possibly think our families are less screwed up, our cancers less fatal, our heartache less painful?
In the end, The Descendants is not a high action movie like I am normally drawn to, instead this is an emotional drama that will leave you once again in wonder of what the human heart can withstand.
It is Bloggiesta weekend and as promised…. I was going to have giveaways! I have a bonus copy of this screening to give away (full movie!) Just leave a comment here and I will enter you into the drawing. Using random.org I will choose a winner on Tuesday morning.
Hunger Games. More than likely… you have heard of it. If you have read me for any amount of time, you have heard it here…. through book reviews, through the excitement over the movie…
To this day I still struggle when somebody asks me what it is about.
Because honestly, based on the synopsis I would have never read this book. Children fighting to the death? People watching from their homes as it is televised for all to see… children that were not born killers, but fighting because they had too… they were forced to for the pleasure of the Capital? For entertainment???
But then… I had seen the book reviews. People whose opinion I trusted were raving… and I read the book. And I loved it.
It’s hard to explain Hunger Games. It is the story of Katniss, living in a world broke into twelve districts, hers being the most impoverish of them all, District Twelve. She lives with her mother and her 12-year-old sister Prim. They have nothing but a roof over their head. Katniss hunt, illegally, with her friend Gale, trying to put any food on the table… a bird, a squirrel….
And then, there are the Hunger Games. Children from the ages of 12 to 18 are put into a drawing to see who will represent their district in a fight to the death. One boy and one girl from each district. Twenty-four children go into the Hunger Games, only one comes out alive. For each year from twelve on, you get your name entered. Occasionally for extra rice on the table, you can offer to have your name put in extra times. Prim is in the drawing once. Katniss is in there more times than she would care to remember… is it 20 times? 30?
And then.. the day of the drawing is held… and as you can probably guess, Prim’s name is drawn. It’s heart wrenching – in the book,and in the movie… and Katniss says NO, and takes her sisters place.
So enough about the book….
lets talk about the movie.
Myself and four friends went to the midnight showing on Thursday. While I know many people do not like to go to movies from books because they say they ruin them, I am not one of those people. I am always curious when a book I have enjoyed becomes a movie. I wonder if the movie will do the book justice, I wonder what the director will pull out of a book that I didn’t see… for better or for worse…
And of course, as book lovers, we do take some personal ownership in these movie choices don’t we? It has been interesting as they chose who would play what part and the buzz on the internet if the characters were the right ones for the part. Guesses were made and suggested…. rumors milled as to who would play Katniss, Peeta, and Gale…
and then it was done.
Hunger Games, much like the Harry Potter movies, leave me breathless. I know how the book made me feel…. I hope I get that out of the movie.
I can safely say I did… and then some.
Jennifer Lawrence is Katniss. I am sorry if you disagree, but I thought she was the perfect mix of tough girl, who could pull off the fighting for her life look as well as the dressed up version. Entering the games, her look of fear is spot on.
Josh Hutterson took a little while longer to grow on me (he is so little in real life!) but once they were preparing for the games… I found him to do an amazing job as well.
Liam’s role as Gale is so small its hard to get a feel for him.
Fantastically done, and tasteful seems to be a word I use that does not make sense when again… its kids fighting to the death, but it is done well. The actual killing is off-screen. You know what happened, but nothing is overly violent and gory.
It was kind of cool to see how the capital watched like “Big Brother” over the games, and how they made things happen if it was getting dull…
My recommendation is see the movie. If you have not read the book, do that too, but the movie does a nice job of covering all the bases so if you have not read the book (shudder to think of it!) you will not be lost.
On World Book Night, April 23, the book I am handing out is Hunger Games. Yeah, I appreciate it that much.
I will be going again.