Weekend Pick: 'The Hunger Games'
Mon, 26 Mar 2012

Last weekend, Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum's comedic chemistry helped "21 Jump Street" arrest the box-office winning ways of "Dr. Seuss' The Lorax," which held the top spot for two straight weeks. While the raunchy comedy has the right to remain the top money earner, the odds are not in its favor, seeing as one of the most talked-about movies of the year, "The Hunger Games," opens on more than 4,000 screens this weekend. Because no one wants to compete with the blockbuster, it's the only movie opening wide.

Expect big numbers from the movie based on Suzanne Collins's best-selling novel, starting with these: 26 million copies of the book are in print in the U.S. alone; it spent over three consecutive years on the best-seller list; and the frenzied fan base has already broken the advanced ticket sales record with over 2,000 shows sold out. In case you've somehow avoided the hype, we boil down the movie and predict which fans might enjoy it.

Lionsgate'The Hunger Games'

Rated PG-13 for intense thematic violent material and disturbing images -- all involving teens.

What's the Story?

Atop the ashes of what was the United States stands the nation of Panem, a country of 12 Districts ruled with an iron fist by the Capital. To remind the Districts that rebellion is futile, every year the Capital chooses 24 teenaged Tributes to battle one another in a televised fight to the death. Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), a coal miner's daughter and a skilled hunter, and Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson), a strong-willed and able-bodied son of a baker, are this year's reluctant Tributes from District 12. In order to have any chance of survival, Katniss and Peeta must learn to play the dangerous games, or be hunted down by well-trained career Tributes, and murdered on national television.

Who Will Dig It?

Fans of the book, high-concept sci-fi fantasy, action/adventure, and provocative story telling should get their fill from this long-awaited film.