Pathos and Ethos in "The Hunger Games"?

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thehungergamesbookvsmovie.jpgI finally got to see the movie adaptation of "The Hunger Games" this weekend.  It was alright. There were certain aspects of the book that I thought were handled very well.  However, I felt that the aspect that I felt was most important to the message of the story was poorly translated into the film.

Reading the novel, the protagonist Katniss Everdeen constantly mentions the use of pathos in the arena and related Hunger Games broadcasts.  She always talks about how she is being watched, and has to play up on audience sympathies for help. 


Most importantly, she points out that it is impossible to tell true pathos from invented pathos with the other tributes.  For example, Katniss and another tribute, Peeta, strike up a 'fake' romance to appeal to the viewers' emotions.  Katniss admits that much of her dialogue is for the benefit of these viewers, and that Peeta's is as well, and she still cannot trust him.


The novel also explores the tributes creating an identity for themselves in public interviews and events.  By creating their ethical appeals to the audiences, they hope to again gain support to aid them later.


I feel that the film adaptation did not accurately depict the tributes' pressure to create believable and likable ethos and pathos.  Perhaps this is because, unlike the novel, we never enter Katniss's head.  In the novel, she frequently reminds us that she is putting on an act, while the film chooses not to bring it up as much.



Photo Source: FilmEquals.com

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