Went to see it last night. It's the third night running at the Jax Jr, and so the crowd was medium sized, the true fans saw it on opening night. I haven't read the book, and was seeing the movie 'cause of all the buzz on the Internet. This is a science fiction movie, set on Earth, in the far future. So far in the future that present day countries, institutions, and even personal names are gone, lost in the dim past. It's an impoverished world, with the 99% scratching out a living from the land, and the 1% living in luxury at Capitol. It's all live acting, with little CGI.
For a book based movie, it was very watchable, the plot was understandable, the dialogue was reasonable. Better than the later Harry Potter's, where the plot is unintelligible if you haven't read the book. The sound man did his job on this one and the dialogue was audible, unlike all too many films were the sound is terrible and the dialogue is lost under the score and the sound effects. Give this flick some points for that. The camera man started off with the annoying modern "shake the camera" and "fast cut piled upon fast cut" technique which has spoiled so many movies, but he wised up and used a tripod once the movie gets rolling.
Katniss and Peeta, the heroine and hero, are well written and beautifully acted. They are portrayed as decent, tough, caring, brave young people, thrown into a terrible situation. They are selected to compete in the annual Hunger Games, a "Survivor with live ammunition" type of gladiatorial game, televised for the entertainment of the 1%. The game continues until only one contestant is left alive. With this threat hanging over them, Katniss and Peeta manage to fall in love giving the movie a Romeo and Juliet type of attraction. Heh, if it works for Shakespeare, it can't be all bad. Katniss and Peeta are much more attractive characters than the Twilight protagonists who come across as whiny and flaky. Despite the unfairness of their treatment, and their world, Katniss and Peeta don't whine, they shoulder their packs and move out. Watching the movie, I fell in love with both of them, and rooted for them to win. It's been a long time since I enjoyed a movie character as much.
This movie has been marketed as a teenager's love flick. It's better than that. In fact it's the best Hollywood movie to come out in years. Go and see it.