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Jennifer Lawrence: No Average Horror Heroine

by Carl Anthony

I am not really sure why I like Jennifer Lawrence other than I just do . . . 

Now most people think this is because of "The Hunger Games."  Maybe.  Sort of.  It's like "The Twilight Saga" or "The Fast and the Furious."  There are film series that are mandatory.  One must simply watch them.  "Star Trek," "Star Wars," and "Harry Potter" are other fine examples.  That said, I really can't say I started enjoying Lawrence's work in "The Hunger Games," since, culturally, I was kinda forced to view the film.  I WAS forced by the powers in Hollywood to fight and bash my way to the local Redbox, executing Hunger Games style fighting maneuvers on those in line, craving the same movie I was.  And all to lift that annoying little sun screen to find every one checked out.

When I finally had my copy of "The Hunger Games," I went so far as to post a photo of it on Facebook.  My apologies if you were that elderly woman I pushed down . . .  

To find oneself in a conversation, having not viewed the movie, where somebody exclaims: "oh man, Hunger Games was so awesome, I saw it 60 times, it was so incredible, and I loved it, what did you think, you saw it right," is even worse than finding out you landed at home but your bags went to Abu Dhabi.  (Thank you Garfield comics for teaching me about that place.)

That said, my fascination with Lawrence came earlier in a chilling and provoking work called "Winter's Bone."  Lawrence plays a young girl who is searching for her missing father, but must support the rest of her family in the process.  She confronts a ruthless, back woods, drug ring in order to get the answers she seeks.  Combine that with her more recent "House at the End of the Street," and it is easy to see why this girl is a winner. Leading, young ladies in horror flicks have a tendency to just break down.  They cry, scream, gasp, drool, plead, yell, beg, run, hide, drool and pretty much repeat that same cycle, over and over again.  Jessica Biel in "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre" remake?  Prime example!  It's just an overgrown, psycho with a chainsaw.  Now would be the time to exercise a little self empowerment . . .  

Lawrence's character, Elissa Cassidy, does some screaming, but when she breaks the glass in the garage, with the hammer, and swings herself through, it's all business.  Her creepy, antisocial, kidnapper is about to get sent back to the loony bin where he belongs and get a lesson in why only a fool brings a knife to a gun fight.  Lawrence rocks (literally) the role of Cassidy and makes it believable her character really is struggling with her own doubts and fears while trying to make the best of a new move.  Lawrence does an even better job of bringing out the loving and caring side of Cassidy.  

Plus she sees a face in a tree . . . whoa.  

Jennifer Lawrence is a A-list, A-okay gal . . . not because of "The Hunger Games" but because she holds up the integrity of the characters she plays in the these less Blockbuster-esque type movies.  And hey, she was pretty awesome as Katniss too :-) 

If you are not too scared . . . here is a preview.