Southern Man has always permitted his children to see midnight premiers of their favorites so after work today he made the two-hour (actually three-and-a-half this time due to a spectacular wreck on the rush-hour interstate) to fetch Teen Daughter and (with her mother's blessing) bring her back to Southern City for the midnight premier of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and a day off from school on Friday.
This is Teen Daughter's favorite book of the Hunger Games trilogy and the film did not disappoint. Solid acting and terrific production values make this one a sequel that is possibly a cut above the original and the cliff-hanger ending left us wanting more. And the entire theme of a powerful central government and oppressed outlying districts seems to strikc a nerve; Southern Man is seeing more and more "Hunger Games" references on well-trafficked political blogs such as Instapundit and while he bears no illusions about the United States being a center-right country any more (center-right voters don't elect Barrack Obama twice) it is still an interesting trend. And the other interesting trend was the number of teen girls wearing their hair braided in a style they call the "Katniss Everdeen."
From Teen Daughter's Facebook page. Her braid for the movie was even better and it was highly amusing to see the teen girls cluster around and admire each other's efforts.
So Southern Man went to a movie expecting to be disappointed (the only part of the trilogy that he even liked was the first book) and was rather delighted to be proved wrong. He's already looking forward to the third one.