Tomorrow is the official release date for the long-anticipated film version of 'The Hunger Games' but already some fans have had their most burning question answered. For months now, devoted readers of Suzanne Collins' wildly popular young adult novel have been wondering if the movie version would be any good.
If the early reviews are to be believed, the answer to that question is yes – for the most part.
By a majority of accounts, the movie is good and Jennifer Lawrence, who plays Katniss, the courageous heroine, is very good.
Below are a sampling of some major reviews. Overall, critics seemed to find much to like although it must also be noted that some who mostly praised the movie did so rather faintly. For the less jubilant, perhaps the best summaries come from Ty Burr at The Boston Globe (who led with: "Movie's good. Book's still better.") and the headline in The Detroit News: "First film in franchise tantalizes but doesn't transcend."
Here's what some of the more positive reviews have to say:
The LA Times: "Making a successful 'Hunger Games' movie out of Suzanne Collins' novel required casting the best possible performer as Katniss, and in Jennifer Lawrence director Gary Ross and company have hit the bull's-eye, so to speak," writes Kenneth Turan.
The Kansas City Star: "I'm already hungry for more," writes Sharon Hoffman.
Rolling Stone: Relax, you legions of Hunger Gamers. We have a winner," writes Peter Travers. "The screen 'Hunger Games' radiates a hot, jumpy energy that's irresistible. It has epic spectacle, yearning romance, suspense that won't quit and a shining star in Jennifer Lawrence, who gives us a female warrior worth cheering."
Entertainment Weekly: This 'Hunger Games' is a muscular, honorable, unflinching translation of Collins' vision," writes Lisa Schwarzbaum. Grade: A-
And now, it's about to be your turn. What do you think: Will the movie delight or will it disappoint?
Marjorie Kehe is the Monitor's Books editor.