So, I am an avid reader and have read the Hunger Games Series about 15 times each.
I re-read them every time a new movie comes out - to refresh my memory - and always have that little niggly fear (like most book readers) that they will not include something (Harry Potter Order of the Phoenix - I'm looking at you) that is fundamentally important later.
I have to say, that thankfully the Hunger Games Movies have not left me disappointed. I know it is hard for any Director/Writer to fit everything in.. And unlike many - that only see that they have to pay twice to watch the one movie - I actually don't mind books been split into 2 movies. They can fit sooo much of the story in.
Now, to the movie itself - LOVED IT!!! I was not disappointed with any film making decisions - though maybe a little sad we did not get to see Katniss' prep team - I was not unhappy with the decision to encase them all into the Effie Trinket character (I was actually disappointed that in the books, she was NOT there).
The Hanging Tree has become my new favorite song - it is beautiful, simple and exactly as I heard it in my head, when I read the book. I think my only true disappointment is that they did not show the Mockingjays going silent for her - like they would her dad. That is a really beautiful part of the book's story (how much she missed her father).
I think anyone who has already seen the first two movies, will enjoy part one and anyone who has read the books, will love part one.
There was no slowness to the movie - there was still a lot of action - and there was some truly beautiful character moments. Peter's slow decline and wasting away was some pretty awesome and devastating visuals.
Don't know how I will wait 12 months.