The success of The Hunger Games has been extraordinary. Still the number one movie in theaters, The Hunger Games has caused quite a stir. Everyone’s raving about it. Teens have praised the acting, the storyline and the way the movie aligns with the books. But with such admiration comes some criticism.
According to some critics, Jennifer Lawrence, who plays heroine Katniss Everdeen, just doesn’t look hungry enough.
Yes, you read that right. Apparently, critics have voiced their concern that Lawrence is not physically suitable to play Katniss because her character is supposed to be deprived of food and her body does not look malnourished.
Check out the following clip:
A few years ago Ms. Lawrence might have looked hungry enough to play Katniss, but now, at 21, her seductive, womanly figure makes a bad fit for a dystopian fantasy about a people starved into submission (Manohla Dargis, The New York Times).
Although a great choice talent-wise, apparently Lawrence just doesn’t meet the physical expectations of the character. Instead, she has been described as “big-boned” with “lingering baby fat,” and just not physically compatible with Peeta, her love interest.
When I read these criticisms, I was reminded of the many discussions we’ve had here on PI regarding Hollywood’s unrealistic expectations of women. Hollywood’s version of a “normal” body weight is just not normal. Whether it’s demonstrated via an extremely photo-shopped image of a celebrity or an unnaturally skinny Hollywood star, Hollywood’s version of beauty is close to emaciation.
Only in Hollywood would a slim person be described as “big-boned” and considered too fat to look hungry. If Lawrence had taken it upon herself to lose weight until her ribs showed, would her portrayal of Katniss have been more believable? I doubt it. Had she been overweight, maybe there would be legitimacy in the criticism, but to condemn a slim woman for not being slim enough is ridiculous, in my opinion.
Maybe these critics were desperate to find something negative about the movie. But picking on Lawrence’s weight may be damaging. With so many young girls concerned about their own weights and striving to meet the unrealistic body images Hollywood promotes, I’m concerned such criticism will send the wrong message. Many young girls look up to Hollywood actresses as role models.
I pray the reckless comments made by these critics are not taken seriously. And I pray also these critics understand that their negative words have power over the young and insecure, and they may cause unnecessary damage.
Ladies, do you think that Jennifer Lawrence is not “skinny” enough to play Katniss?