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Fight to the death: Yesteryear's dystopian films versus today's 'Hunger Games' era

Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen in
Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen in "The Hunger Games."
Murray Close/Lions Gate Entertainment

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The latest battles of Katniss Everdeen are the most politically tinged yet of the 'Hunger Games' films. In the third installation of the series 'Mockingjay - Part 1,' Katniss is a revolutionary leader fighting an omnipotent, global dictatorship. Box office predictions are consistent with the prior films, in a word: massive. The success of the films, adapted from Suzanne Collins' novels, helped launch a barrage of dystopian films (and books) for the kids these days.

Pop culture analysts say "millenials" have a genuine attachment to apocalyptic scenarios as they face daunting forecasts for world economics, the environment and rapid technological changes. But how does the latest slate of movies, such as "Divergent" and "Legend," compare to Jean-Luc Godard's “Alphaville,” Stanley Kubrick's "A Clockwork Orange” (adapted from Anthony Burgess’ novel), " or George Miller's "The Road Warrior?"  Can young adult films offer the sophisticated intellect and satire of the best dystopian classics?


Henry Sheehan, film critic for KPCC and

Lael Loewenstein, film critic for KPCC and Variety