The question that Hunger Games failed to ask of us
by Stan Faryna
If you really want to hear about it, I didn’t love the movie, Hunger Games. As we were walking out of the theater (Hollywood Multiplex at the Bucharest Mall in Vitan), a guy was telling his girl that the movie was perfect and it reminded him of J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye.
Star-cross’d lovers, indeed!
I wanted to tell this 20 something guy that talking about Holden Caulfield doesn’t get you laid – he should be talking about SUVs, how nice it would be if it was warm enough to head for the beach, or how he’d like to celebrate the New Year with her in Madrid.
Maybe, they could visit the Prado. Then he could talk about art, Diego Velázquez, and the god of war. He could seduce her with intimations of Mars in repose where strength, courage, and passion become servant to the yielding kiss.
I could have discreetly whispered the advice in his ear. Instead, I enjoyed his girl’s absent-minded expression and disinterest. I laughed. My GF wondered why I was laughing and I told her what I was thinking. She rolled her eyes and frowned at me. And then she asked me when are we going to Madrid.
“We’ll move there,” I replied in a hurry. “Or Paris. Or Rome! Just as soon as I sign a million dollar contract for my science fiction novel…”
My GF smiled and dreamed as far as Starbucks.
“The conclusion was crap,” a friend remarked as I sucked on my Iced Venti Mocha Latte. If you didn’t know, that’s the proper way to order or describe a Starbuck’s drink: temperature (if iced), size, flavor, and caffeine content.
“You didn’t love the impoverished allusion to Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet?” I asked with a grin.
“Or was it the lack of an epic consequence – how they fail to spark a revolution in want of social justice?”
“It’s a mash-up of stories that lack a unifying voice,” he replied. “It’s just another movie made to milk a best-selling book for the money. Hunger Games, the movie, wasn’t believable or compelling.”
My GF and his GF both agreed the ending didn’t do much for them.
“So what’s the latest in the blogosphere?” he asked.
I told them about the scandal of Star Princess Captain Edward Perrin who left fisherman to die upon the high sea. Somehow the Titanic came up in the ensuing conversation, but there was no chance in hell that the GFs would talk us into the 3D showing. Instead, I recommended an exploration of the Titanic on Google Earth.
And then came the unavoidable, big question: How am I going to make money in social media?
To which I proposed a more interesting question – the question which Hunger Games failed to ask of us:
How am I going to change the world for the better?
How am I going to be a catcher in the rye?
Our ability to survive, I suggested, does nothing more than define us within a one dimensional context a la Herbert Marcuse.
Just then, a very attractive woman walked by in blue jeans, leather jacket, and cheap knock-offs of Burberry’s plastic rain boots.
Outside, it was a bright, sunny day.
Everyone at the table smiled.
My friend looked me in the eye. And made he fun of me:
“Considering the forlorn conclusion of your quest in the light of a public opinion reflected poignantly by those who wear rain boots on a sunny day (inside a shopping mall), how you gonna make the moolah?”
22 April 2012
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