Tag Archive: the hunger games


Forbes has announced that the highest paid actress of the last year is Kristen Stewart; this is despite the fact that her acting abilities leave a lot to be desired and that she only has one facial expression. Perhaps, though, these reports will finally see Kristen Stewart being able to put a smile on that face of hers. This is no doubt going to cause some controversy with fans of actual actresses with talent like Angelina Jolie, Sandra Bullock or Julia Roberts (who also feature in the top ten) but if you look at the details, it makes sense.

Twilight, whether you like it or not (and for some daft reason a lot of people like seeing three non talented actors in lead roles of a Hollywood franchise), has become a huge worldwide success with Stewart in the lead role of Bella Swan. You can’t underestimate the importance of remaining consistent with actors and actresses in movies. Stewart is the main character in a huge Hollywood franchise and therefore is pretty much irreplaceable in many people’s eyes, meaning that a huge pay off is needed to keep her on board and stop other studios being able to tempt her away with a higher paycheck.

The list compiles the actress’ earnings between May 2011 and May 2012 and as well as having the Twilight series to promote Stewart has also proved that she can bring in the audiences without the help of Robert Pattinson or Taylor Lautner with Snow White and the Huntsman (although I do think that Chris Hemsworth and Charlize Theron were the main draw for the films success, not Stewart) and she was in the lead role yet again, taking a lot of the credit with the films strong success in the box offices.

Second place on the list might be even more surprising that first place: Cameron Diaz. Yes, she may be an experienced actress but what success has she had recently? Well Bad Teacher did surprisingly well at the box office (no doubt because Cameron was showing off her more raunchy side once more) and she took a pay cut on that in favour of a profit participation deal, a gamble that proved to pay off. She also collected a paycheck from What to Expect When You’re Expecting for which she was very highly paid reportedly so she is sitting pretty on top of a huge pile of cash right now I imagine.

The remainder of the top ten is as follows: Sandra Bullock, Angelina Jolie, Charlize Theron, Julia Roberts, Sarah Jessica Parker (seriously?!), Meryl Streep, Kristen Wiig and Jennifer Aniston. I was slightly surprised to see Jennifer Lawrence not on the list although I anticipate she will be featured very high up the rankings next year with her place in the new X-men franchise and The Hunger Games sequels likely to see her cashing in in the same way that Kristen Stewart has this year.

Kristen Stewart will be seen later this year in Twilight: Breaking Dawn – Part 2, the trailer for which is below:

The Hunger Games: Reviewed.

***WARNING: CONTAINS SPOILERS***

The Hunger Games has been impossible to avoid over the past few weeks, maybe even months. Aside from the three big superhero films, The Hunger Games is probably the most anticipated film of the year. It has been adapted from Suzanne Collins’ worldwide best selling novel and directed by Gary Ross who is best known for The Tales of Despereaux and Seabiscuit.

The Hunger Games is set in the future; a future where teenagers are forced to compete as ‘tributes’ in ‘the Hunger Games’ where it is every man for himself and only the last man standing survives. These games are broadcast on televisions throughout each ‘district’ of the world. Katniss Everdeen is our hero and she volunteers to compete in the games in place of her sister.

The film relies a lot on the acting ability of Jennifer Lawrence who plays Katniss. Lawrence is an absolutely wonderful actress and she needs to be brilliant in this film to keep the audiences attention. Despite having a supporting cast that includes Josh Hutcherson, Lenny Kravitz, Liam Hemsworth, Elizabeth Banks, Donald Sutherland and Woody Harrelson most of the scenes involve Katniss and require Jennifer Lawrence to hold the audience and she proves that she can do that.

It is a horrible world we are taken into that gives the audience a feel of the bleak future which our heroes inhabit. From the offset, even from the trailers, anyone with half a bran could predict the ending considering there are a couple more books (and probable films) to follow The Hunger Games. But it is the journey we go on that holds the audience, how everything unfolds, this is what we are interested in.

The visual elements of the film are spectacular and it is such a wide world in which events take place that the effects need to be perfect to really suck the viewers into the arena. From the fire in the forest to the spaceship flying above the district, the special effects are really powerful without distracting from other aspects of the film which is great as it the story could have easily been lost in the big wide world of The Hunger Games.

Katniss is a conflicted character in terms of film making. We are introduced to her as this strong, family kind of girl who sacrifices herself for her sister. Yet, as the film goes on, to me, she actually seemed like a weak person, completely opposite to what we were promised at the beginning. Whilst she proves that she is smart and adept with a bow and arrow, she still needs saving a couple of times and gets overruled by feelings inside the arena with a love story that really was not needed.

The poor character development is not unique to Katniss, however, and it is this that lets the film down in my opinion. Other characters are not given enough time to develop really and Josh Hutcherson’s character Peeta Mellark, I thought, was really really unlikeable and I was actually hoping that Katniss would kill him at the end of the film, but alas it was not meant to be.

The Hunger Games has proven successful with audiences already, opening to the third biggest weekend in history. It sets the foundation of the franchise and is an entertaining film, but character growth and strength of story hold back Jennifer Lawrence’s fantastic job in the lead role.

My Rating: 7/10

Aged just 20, Jennifer was nominated for an Oscar.

Jennifer Lawrence is not a name that mainstream cinema audiences may not be all that familiar with. Yet, now starring in what look set to be two of the decades biggest franchises (X-men and The Hunger Games) she looks set to conquer the world of cinema.

Lawrence began her career in television, having parts in Monk, Cold Case and Medium (although she only featured in one or two episodes of these) before she got her break in the American sitcom The Bill Engvall Show. This ran for three seasons and gave Lawrence a platform to build upon which she did.

Her first project after the sitcom was cancelled was a film called Winter’s Bone. Now, many people may not recognise the name but Jennifer Lawrence’s performance here was very well received and she became the second youngest person to be nominated for the Best Actress Oscar. As well as the Oscar nomination she also won several awards at film festivals for this role. And so began a very promising film career.

As Mystique in Matthew Vaughn's X-men: First Class.

Roles in Like Crazy and The Beaver followed before Jennifer Lawrence made her debut in mainstream cinema with the X-men reboot/sequel (still nobody is quite sure what it is) X-men: First Class in which she played Mystique. This was the first real chance that mainstream audiences had to see her work and I thought she did a great job as Mystique and brought real character to the role and a believable friendship with Xavier and a sense of wanting to fit in that everyone feels at some point in their lives. This was her first big commercial success.

In 2011, it was announced that Lawrence had been cast in the leading role of The Hunger Games as Katniss Everdeen. This series looks set to be Hollywood’s next big film series to be adapted from books following Harry Potter and Twilight. And with Jennifer Lawrence in the lead role it can only elevate her career even more.

Jennifer Lawrence takes on the coveted role of Katniss in The Hunger Games.

It seems like she is choosing her roles carefully as she continues to interchange between mainstream movies and those that may not get her mainstream audiences but where she can put in a strong and heartfelt performance. House at the End of the Street is her next film and looks set to go under the radar before she returns with The Silver Linings Playbook and Serena, both co-starring Bradley Cooper.

On the red carpet, Jennifer Lawrence has been turning heads. Not just because of her looks but for her fashion choices as well which are always impeccable. With the acting talent she has combined with her image, she could well be a huge star in Hollywood for years to come. After all, she is still only twenty one.