Goshen News, Goshen, IN


March 24, 2012

Movie fans hungry for 'The Hunger Games'

GOSHEN — Good news, parents: The first two people in line for tickets to Friday night’s showing of “The Hunger Games” at Linway Cinema were a librarian and a teacher.

“Hunger Games” opened with a strong midnight showing Thursday night, and if the line of a dozen or so people seeking tickets to the movie at noon Friday is any indication, the latest book-to-movie sensation will continue to build momentum over the weekend.

First in line at noon Friday to get tickets was Leah Schroder, who works as the young adult services coordinator at the Goshen Public Library. Schroder helped coordinate a give-away of movie tickets for “Hunger” at the library.

Tandra Oberholtzer, who teaches language arts at Concord Junior High, was next in line. She was seeking 10 tickets for her daughter’s 16th birthday and four tickets for a raffle organized at school for students who don’t have any D’s or F’s.

At the library, five copies of the first book in the series are in high demand each has four “holds,” underscoring the book’s popularity, Schroder said.

The library posted a sign-up sheet for free tickets. “It filled up really fast last night,” Schroder said.

“The Hunger Games” is about a post-apocalyptic world in which children are annually chosen and forced into a battle to the death.

Both Schroder and Oberholtzer compared “Hunger” to the most recent book-to-movie adaptation of “Twilight,” and both expressed excitement over the movie and the fact that young people — and adults — are attracted to the storyline.

“It’s comparable to ‘Twilight’ but we have much better hope for this than ‘Twilight,’” Schroder said.

Both Schroder and Oberholtzer said they prefer “Hunger” over the new-age vampire tale of “Twilight” in part because the themes and historical parallels were stronger in “Hunger.”

“Hunger” also offers a more complex story line, they said.

While the story is interesting, they both cautioned that it might be too intense and violent for very young readers. Oberholtzer advised that students younger than seventh grade might not be ready for it.

Melissa Bailey, 33, was ready for it, however.

Bailey was in line at noon Friday and said many of her friends had also read the book. She added that she found the book to be surprising and unpredictable.

Bailey said she always reads the book before seeing its film adaptation, in part to see how her vision of the characters matches up with the movie’s version.

“I have high hopes for the movie,” Bailey said.

The theater sold nearly 50 tickets in less than 15 minutes when doors opened at noon Friday.

Shortly before 5 p.m. Friday, people stood in two long lines seeking tickets. A ticket taker said almost everybody who was showing up at 5 p.m. was there for “Hunger Games.”

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