Jennifer Lawrence is a great actress and she did a wonderful job in the role of Katniss. That being said, I would have preferred a biracial actress to play this part because I can think of so few heroines with “olive colored skin” that when one finally appears she ought not to be white washed.
(spoilers) Think how much more incredible the scene where Katniss covers Rue in flowers would have been if Katniss and Rue were both women of color. Think how much more powerful it would be if it weren’t a white woman mourning the loss of a black woman. (We’ve seen that before. We’ve seen privileged characters learn from less privileged ones.) Think how amazing it would be for women of color to see themselves represented in every scene that Rue and Katniss share. The Hunger Games has already shown itself to be an incredibly popular film. Just imagine if such a successful film contained scenes which included only actresses of color. I would trade in Jennifer Lawrence’s performance for that.
ALL OF THIS.
Jennifer Lawrence is a great actress and a lovely human being and normally I would be very happy to see a movie that features her. But that image of two women of color bonding, helping each other, impacting each others lives? We need that. As a people. With the way they cast this movie we have three notable characters (Rue, Thresh, and Cinna) playing the role of the Black Best Friend to a white person. And that’s so old. So tired. We need to show people of color as people. Not just as a White Person’s Little Helper.
I understand and appreciate the criticisms previously mentioned, but in defense of the movie, it’s set far into the future. That could mean that all people during that time period are equally oppressed by The Capitol. Sure color blindness doesn’t exist in this day in age, but when an entire nation is being oppressed by one super force of a government, a black person’s struggle is equal to the white person’s struggle. Not to mention each came from communities seemingly entirely composed of people of their own race, which means that they wouldn’t have experience white privilege in Katniss’s district because everyone was white. There was class segregation based on profession in District 12 but no room for race segregation or disadvantage. My thoughts are all hypothetical and forgive me for playing devil’s advocate but the movie is based on the book which is set way in the future.