I can't be the only one who saw Hunger Games and realized (Spoliers)

…that Katniss hardly does Any.Thing. Yet, she’s got all these people helping her because she’s so strong and moral and…helpable…and inspires people to …help her.

Right up until she blows up the supplies, she hasn’t done anything but get help and act on the advice of people helping her.

First she freezes. Then,she ignores Woody’s advice and runs for a bag, then she runs. Then she climbs a tree. Gets burnt. Gets treed. Gets help for her burn. Gets advice from Rue. Drops the nest. Runs. Gets help from Peeta. Passes out. Gets help from Rue. Blows up the dump.

After that she gets help from Woody and the bag-watching dude from American Beauty. Gets saved by Rues partner. Helps Peeta. And kills Cato with help from Peeta.

Our heroine folks!!! Yes, right up until the actual Hunger Games. I thought she was strong, and tough like everyone else…then she ran and hid and cried and got a lot of help and won.

Yes yes. She had the brilliant suicide idea. Yes she is morally strong, I agree. Still. Oh, and I liked the movie btw. I just hadn’t seen any criticism yet along the lines I mentioned.
Oh and Katniss…how about rubbing a little mud on that big ol white moon face of yours. I’d have seen you from a mile away.

Katniss herself would agree with you. She’s a Reluctant Hero. She herself has no clue as to why people would choose her as a role model/champion/freedom fighter. She’s more capable than a lot of Tributes because of her hunting skills, but a lot of it is sheer luck and she knows it.

exactly - beyond that - its a game of survival - so, she’s also being very careful about letting the others kill themselves off - there is no ‘requirement’ for her to do anything but survive the games. Had she went out and actively hunted the other opponents, she would not be the hero.

It is a game designed to keep the districts upset with each other - she won by showing at least one other district thta they can work together …

So, yeah - we realized everything from the OP - we just got the point of it.

A lot of that is spelled out much better in the book. That is, it’s explained better in the book than in the movie. You spelled it out just fine.

Here’s a couple of reviews from http://thelastpsychiatrist.com/ that I think are fascinating:

Hunger Games Catching Fire: Badass Body Count

What’s Wrong With The Hunger Games Is What No One Noticed

That’s not a completely accurate description.

She is appalled by a whole-sale slaughter. I get that.

She evaluates the actual rather than theoretical situation and takes a risk, which turns out O.K.

She figures out how to stay alive at night (unlike the girl who lights the fire).

Out runs some fireballs.

Withstands the stings of the mutants.

Takes out the main advantage of the Careers.

Saves Peeta’s life.

Successfully implements her strategy, i.e., let the others kill each other off, and - possibly - avoid killing others herself as long as possible.

And manages to manipulate the game to her advantage.

This is all pretty effective for a character who has to had survive but not doing things - attracting attention, speaking her mind, trusting others, having any hope for the future. (But that may be more clearly demonstrated in the book than the movie.)

That’s a nasty little remark.

If that’s all you got out of it you either didn’t like it, which is fine or missed the point in which case you should read the book and/or watch the next two movies. If they follow the next two books, they’ll be right along the same tracks. Remember she didn’t choose to be in the games (well, she did, but only to save her sister) but now that she’s here she’s just trying to get out alive and as she’s outsmarting them [the games/gamemaker], without killing the other people, that’s causing some problems. She’s not playing by the rules.

Haven’t read the books yet, but I think this is the best answer for the OP. The Government has done a pretty good job of dividing the people and crushing their collective spirit. Also, nobody wants to go to the games (well, maybe the district that seems to train their people to be Hunger Games champs) and Kat volunteered in order to save her sister. So right out of the gate she is seen as someone who is still willing to put herself in harm’s way to save someone else. She’s unique, she’s an example (and how!), and her story is fantastic media fodder. She sidesteps the spotlight as much as she can, she spurns the spirit of the game as much as she can, and she forms alliances with the vulnerable rather than making easy kills–knowing full well there can be only one victor. At the end of it all, she’d rather die than give in to the capricious whims of the government. She’s a girl-Gandhi wake up call to everyone who’s been beaten down to believe they are powerless and alone. Until Rue’s ‘funeral’ I haven’t cried during a movie since Aragorn told the hobbits they were to bow to no one.

I think a lot of why Kat gets support is because she is objectively a badass with tremendous killing potential, and because she acts how everyone else wishes they had the bravery to. Doing nothing, when the expectation is to do something, is actually doing a lot.

well said.

Thank you for your consideration …

This drives me crazy about the current batch of YA books. They all theoretically feature strong female characters, but those strong female characters never DO anything. They’re all borne along by the rushing waters of fate and shit. They rarely make any significant choices at all! I mean, say what you want about Twilight but at least Bella makes choices! The books I read when I was a kid weren’t like that at all. I think it sends a generally bad message and it makes me very uncomfortable.

I haven’t read the book(s) - but I disagree with taht in this case - she made major choices about how she will/won’t respond to the games and the demands put on her… she chose to maintain her dignity/morals in spite of the intense pressure on her to do otherwise.

Holy **** yes, that got me.

As for her strategy. Camping? Really Katniss? You little cheater. J/K.

No it isn’t. He is simply stating that some camouflage would have been logical.

Maybe he doesn’t realize that Katniss has to be pretty because she is a ‘strong female character’.

I like the conclusions in the links that Don’t Ask posted.

Katniss is not making a moral choice to stay alive. She is participating in the deaths of the others. She could passively resist the system, by allowing herself to be killed or by convincing the others to not fight. But she doesn’t do that.

Her survival = other people’s deaths.

Hmm…I read that second review, and I think he’s missing a lot. Katniss’s decisions permeate the series–and the theme of her decisions throughout is that she subverts the expectations. She volunteers for the games that are supposed to be a punishment; when she’s supposed to suck up to the administrators during the demonstration session, she attacks them; when she’s supposed to make cynical temporary alliances, she makes real ones; when she’s supposed to murder other people, she forebears; when she finally kills someone, she chooses to do so out of mercy, not out of viciousness; when she’s supposed to end her alliance, she threatens to destroy the fabric of the Game by denying the audience a winner.

The reviewer suggests that the success of her threat denies her agency, but that’s ridiculous. She clearly could have killed Peeta at the last moment. Instead of doing so, she demonstrated her agency by taking a third path. The Game’s designer’s thought she had to make a choice:

  1. Kill Peeta.
  2. Be killed by Peeta.

Instead, she chose:
3) Set up a terrible dilemma for the Game designers.

Now the Game designers had to choose:

  1. Have two victors.
  2. Have no victors.

Yes, they chose option 1–but they only chose it because Kat forced them to make a choice.

The reviewer seems to be trapped in the mindset that Katniss must make one of the choices given to her. Her brilliance as a character is her stubborn refusal to order from the menu.

I think the thing that always bothered me the most was how the gamesmasters interfere so heavily with the game in progress. They mentioned repeatedly that people in the Capitol bet on these hunger games, and Katniss is almost murdered by fireballs in the first few hours. She was ranked… second-best?.. in the trials before the game, which would establish the betting odds. It’s be like betting on Secretariat knowing that a sniper could shoot him midrace. In the second one, any number of those hazards could eliminate a player quickly, which would make establishing a line and handling odds impossible. Plus, why would somebody sponsor a contestant when they might die from interference?

So… I guess betting doesn’t really make much sense in the hunger games.

do you similarly hate superman (‘man of steel’) or other movies where male hero routinely cause the deaths of innocent bystanders or even countless villians thru direct and indirect action?

Atleast in this case - she never shot first and only reacted in self defense. (other than the poor food supply)

She was ranked #1, IIRC - the fireballs was because she had moved well away from the other competitors - to force her ‘back’ into the game.

The Hunger Games’ rules themselves don’t make a lot of sense (pitting oppressed districts against other in a brutal spectator sport in a blatant attempt to distract attention from the oppressors) but then, neither does quidditch.

Yeah, that’s a pretty poor review over all. She makes a big deal about how Katniss never deliberately hunts down any of the other kids playing the Game, and suggests that this is because she’s a girl, therefore, the movie is anti-feminist. Except, I think the reason she was written that way is because it’s really, really hard to make a sympathetic protagonist who is also a child-killer.

I mean, look at Battle Royale, which Hunger Games borrowed liberally from - in the movie at least (I’ve not read the book) the male protagonist in a basically identical situation avoids killing anyone at all, until the very end, when he shoots the person responsible for them being in the game in the first place. And this is from a Japanese horror movie - not a genre generally known for squeamishness about this sort of thing.

She also seems to confuse bad plotting with bad feminism. The scene where she’s up a tree, surrounded by other players, for example, was kind of dumb for a lot of reasons. (Again, just going off the movie.) It was kind of ridiculous for her to be up in the tree for hours, and to need someone else, up in a different tree, to point out that she’s sharing it with a wasps nest. But that doesn’t mean the movie was “robbing her of her agency,” it just means the writer was lazy. Also, for a movie that’s supposedly makes the main character look soft, she’s responsible for two of the most disturbing and agonizing deaths in the movie - the wasp nest, and the last guy being torn apart by wild dogs.

I’ve always wondered if she knew what kind of wasps those were…

My God, those were poorly written.