I knew nothing about this except hearing hype about some movie comig out called 'The Hunger Games,' so was intrigued to see what the fuss was about. I didn't even know it was a book.
At the end of it, I turned to hubby and said there has got to be a sequel, there seems to be so many layers to this. I've since discovered there is a series of books.
When I watched it, I could see references to the Holocaust, the days of the Roman empire, George Orwell's "1984," The Wizard of Oz, Survivor, and Charles Dickens' "Oliver." I don't know if that was the intent, but that's what I got out of it.
I took the title "The Hunger Games" both literally and philosophically.
I watched it 'pure' with no outside influence except the hype I heard the day before about people lining up overnight to see it.
Like you, I had no idea about the books either and I prefer not to know anything about a movie when I finally decide to watch it, so basically I was just as much clueless as you were. It's only after having seen the movie, I decided to find out more about it and that's when I discovered the books. I read some of the reviews and they do suggest that the books are million times better than the movie. Too many failed attempts for one and also, it deliberately didn't capture the gruesome detail of the books/killings to make the PG13 rating. As a result, it felt like a feel good movie designed to simply please the general audience and it succeeded in that regard. On the very first weekend of its release, it’d made about 155 million.