The Starving Games

Movie review by
Andrea Beach, Common Sense Media
The Starving Games Movie Poster Image
Lowbrow, violent spoof with plenty of juvenile sex humor.
  • PG-13
  • 2013
  • 83 minutes

Parents say

age 14+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 14+
Based on 20 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

This straightforward parody is devoid of messages other than product placements.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The characters all are parodies and behave for comic effect only; there are no role models.

Violence

Most of the violence is cartoon-y and slapstick, without gore, but there are a couple of gratuitous gross-out scenes: Heroine Kantmiss is shown with gory, realistic-looking blood dripping from her mouth, and another character's infection is oozing and gory. There's lots and lots of punching, hitting, stabbing, and impaling with arrows or satirical weapons such as a baguette, and much of it is revisited over and over in super slo-mo. The projectiles are shown going through the victim, but again there's no blood. One clearly fake stabbing includes computer-generated and unrealistically colored splatters of blood. A lot of the fighting involves kicking or punching male genitalia. 

Sex

There's a sex scene in which a large "censored" block covers most of the characters' bodies, but their heads and bare limbs are shown in many positions; another scene spoofing the movie Avatar simulates sex. Body parts provide a lot of giggle fodder: Men are kicked and punched in the groin frequently; there's a gratuitous "T&A" scene of cheerleaders dancing and posing suggestively; and heroine Kantmiss "motorboats" a teen boy. Kantmiss and Peter kiss briefly a couple of times and once for a few seconds longer. There's a male streaker who's nude from the rear but whose genitals are pixelated from the front. There's a little potty humor in one scene wherein Kantmiss is seen squatting and grimacing with exaggerated potty sound effects, which is replayed later in slow motion. Kantmiss receives instructions to touch Peter's "thing." Getting your first period is mentioned, and a 12-year-old character asks if another is trying to "hook up" with her.

Language

"S--t" and variations are used frequently, as is "ass." Used once or twice each:  "piss," "bitch," "damn," "turd," "prick," "whore," "ho," and "son of a bitch." An official salute is the middle finger, and it's shown a half dozen times or so.

Consumerism

Lots of products are spoofed with slightly changed names such as "Words with Foes" and "Tres Equis" beer. There are a lot of clear references, without naming them, to popular apps such as Angry Birds and Fruit Ninja. A character is seen frequently using Siri, and the leader watches the action on a tablet with a clear Apple logo on it. Other products specifically mentioned include Cinemax, Viagra, Facebook, Twitter, Nike, Subway, Playboy, and Starbucks. A character's name is pronounced the same as the Toyota "Celica." Many movie franchises are spoofed, most extensively Avatar, The Lord of the Rings, and The Avengers.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

In a parody of a Dos Equis commercial, a character drinks and then spits out beer both in the movie and again in the bloopers at the end.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Starving Games is from the same team that brought us the Scary Movie franchise and spoofs such as Meet the Spartans, and they're trodding some well-worn paths here as they send up The Hunger Games. There's lots of cartoon-y violence and some gore, but there are a couple of gratuitous gross-out moments, with one involving blood and the other an infected injury. Speaking of gratuitous, there's also plenty of sexual content involving men getting hit in the genitalia, some depictions of women as sexual objects, and a couple of sex scenes played for laughs. "S--t" is used, as is other profanity such as "whore" and "ass" and a rude finger gesture. Teens and older kids no doubt will find the spoofs funny, as the movie touches on many of the most popular, recent pop-culture phenomena. But there's nothing else going on here beyond a gratuitous effort to pander to the juvenile mind.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byDerekthecleric May 20, 2017

Awful

None of the gags or pop-culture references are funny. They just aren't.
Kid, 12 years old August 10, 2014

Funny Take on the Hunger Games isn't right for young kids

Suggested MPAA Rating: R for strong language, brief male nudity, sexual themes, and violent comedy Surprisingly, I did actually laugh during this movie. It was... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byJustice14 August 9, 2014

Atrocious and unfunny

This movie tries to be funny but completely fails. One of the worst I've ever seen.

What's the story?

THE STARVING GAMES is a straightforward spoof of The Hunger Games and follows its plot pretty closely. Heroine Kantmiss Evershot (Maiara Walsh) volunteers to take part in a reality-show-style survival contest. One by one, all the other contestants are killed until only she and Peter, who has a big crush on her, are left. Most aspects of the original story are here, including the dystopian government and the conflicting love interests between the boy back home and fellow contestant, although the ending's different in service to the parody.

Is it any good?

As uninspiring as its title, The Starving Games serves up crass, juvenile humor in a vehicle for little else than gratuitous violence, sexuality, and pop-culture references. Some kids and teens may find a lot of humor in it, until the popularity of Taylor Swift and Angry Birds fades, but even so they won't enjoy sitting through a movie that strikes the same note over and over again. If you have a bunch of older kids and teens who want big laughs on a Friday night, see our handpicked alternatives below to show them how spoofing should be done.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about what makes a good spoof. Does this movie make you think about The Hunger Games any differently? Can you tell what the filmmakers think of Hunger Games? Why do you think they made this movie?

  • How funny do you think the movie will be in a few years, when the pop culture and products spoofed in the movie aren't popular anymore? Do you think this movie has any lasting qualities?

  • If you could spoof a current pop-culture trend, what would it be, and why?

Movie details

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