Friday, April 13, 2012

'Hunger Games?' It's a black and white issue

A question for all of us who liked "The Hunger Games:" Does anyone remember a single Latino character? I didn't. So I scrolled through the cast list at the Internet Movie Data Base (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1392170/fullcredits#cast) and found no Latino characters and only one actor: Nelson Ascensio, who had the tiny role of Flavius. Reader Joel Kweskin, who was in the movie as an extra and is about as Latino as pumpernickel bread, brought this question up.

Does this mean the futuristic government of Panem has solved the "problem" of immigration by deporting or exterminating Latinos? Does it mean that the producers of the film never gave a thought to the makeup of our country decades from now?

Please don't tell me there were no significant Latinos in the book. I know that, but the movie took so many liberties with the story that it could certainly have changed that, too. If you're going to introduce the character of the aged, sinister president, Edward James Olmos could have played him as well as Donald Sutherland.

Hollywood went through a long period of color-blindness about black characters through the 1950s and 60s and gay characters up to the 1990s, and that trend's being repeated today with brown-skinned folks. Every movie doesn't have to be an advertisement for Rainbow America, but to ignore is to exclude: When there's not a single significant face in the movie that looks like you, the message is "You don't matter."

I can't answer the questions above. And having raised them, I'm now off for a week of unpaid "furlough" time. But give them a little thought in my absence, would you?

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

That is because beaners will give you gas if you eat them.

Anonymous said...

Appreciate your concern about not having Spanish speaking whites, blacks, mulattos or asians in the movie....but please, understand that we, Spanish speaking people that live in the USA, come in every race. There is no such BROWN race. That shows your own racist views and lack of education regarding Spanish speaking Americans. By the way, I'm a white Asian Cuban.....figure that out...

Anonymous said...

"Brown" people..really? i am speechless on that one. what is a "brown" people? i know many Spanish speaking people that are not "brown", as i know many white..and black..folks that are..dude..we are not crayola crayons here.
so what are Indians (as from India)?

Anonymous said...

Are you serious? whining about their being no latinos in this movie and you aren't a latino yourself? this is such a pathetic piece. who gives a crap?

MoosewithaJ said...

Oh I feel your pain, how come in the marvel movies Nick Fury isn't played by a white guy.Fury always was in the comics and was up till that crappy avengers cartoon a few years ago. So yeah I feel for ya. Oh and whats with a Brit playing Peter Parker? No No No, no more political Correctness BS. If the character is American let it be american, white its white. if its black it's black ect ect. Don't like it, Write your own dang story,movie,or what not and don't try to make it PC.

Anonymous said...

So... if a movie or tv show doesn't portray the "rainbow" so to speak it means someone doesn't matter? Really? How'd you get to that logical leap? And how is it that movies and tv are the means by which people should determine their self worth or the worth of a particular race of people?

Anonymous said...

I'm the guy who originally posed this observation to Mr. Toppman, my point simply being that if some kind of "reality" is to play a part in our appreciation of the storyline...then we should acknowledge that, presently, there are now more Hispanics in this country as a minority than there are African-Americans. Evolving society being what it is, the future of the country of "Panem" -- read, The United States -- should account for that factor. So my question simply was: forget brown, black, white, yellow, whatever... Hollywood's nod to "equality" these days notwithstanding...Where are the Hispanic characters in "The Hunger Games?"

Anonymous said...

Mr. Toppman knows a lot about brown people, because he is a poop stain.

Anonymous said...

I don't recall any whites in the latest Tyler Perry movie I saw. Obviously, he's a racist, right?

I grow tired of whiny people's sensitivity. Not every work of fiction requires token characters of politically correct gender/ethnicity/race/whatever. Grow up, get in touch with the real world.

Anonymous said...

Why does it matter? Blacks have there movies without white people. Latinos have there movies without white people. Why can't white people have there movies without any other race without it being scrutinized?

Anonymous said...

It always amuses me when folks like Mr. Toppman seem determined to keep everyone in a neat little box. They seem to believe that "Hispanics" must look a certain way or perhaps speak with an accent. Apparently they have not met any "Hispanics" who have married non-Hispanics and have children who look and sound just like the rest of us, which means they can be any hue with any color of hair .And their children's surnames may well be Smith or Jones or maybe even Schmidt.

This is a futuristic movie, right? So why shouldn't we expect that in the future there will be less and less distinction between and emphasis on ethnic groups. Unless of course, we subscribe to Mr. Toppman's determination to keep us all divided up into neat little aggrieved groups.

Leslie said...

I love the book as well as the movie adaptation. I don't mind if there are or there's none Latinos there as long as it's worth spending my money and time.

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