If you are here right now we guess you liked this incredible film series and want to find the best movies like The Hunger Games that can give you that same dose of excitement. Katniss’s courageous personality and inner strength have captured the imagination of legions of devoted fans all around the world, making The Hunger Games the 21-highest-grossing film franchise of all time.
Lucky for you there are quite a few great movies like The Hunger Games and just as good. This list gathers the best movies that deal with a dystopian society, lethal reality shows, or movies with a strong female lead.
Movies like The Hunger Games
1. The Running Man (1987)
A futuristic gladiator TV show that hosts criminals sentenced to death. The show’s host presents a challenge- to be “persecuted” for one program.
The contenders can achieve their freedom in a violent and cruel confrontation with murderous persecutors. In a world where the rating is the name of the game (and who would have believed in 1987, when the film was made that it would happen long before 2017, the year they placed the plot) the term “amusement” takes on a different meaning.
Ben Richards (Schwarzenegger) is an innocent cop who was indicted and sent to compete for his life on television for the enjoyment of bloodthirsty viewers. He discovers that the rules of the game are different and that no one won the game, or even survived it.
The original story was written by Stephen King (The Shining, Misery) this time deviating from horror stories to the futuristic action terrain that became synonymous with Schwarzenegger. The show is hosted by Richard Dawson, a true and well-known American TV presenter.
2. The Cube Film Series
Six strangers wake up from their daily reality and discover that they are trapped in a surrealist prison. An endless maze of cube cells and traps.
A policeman, a thief, a genius math student, a psychologist, and an architect meet reluctantly in an unconventional situation. The collection of people, which seems casual at first, turns out to be the only formula for getting out of the maze, the “cube.” Each of the characters has one of the features needed to escape.
Despite its low budget, the 1997 film was an impressive financial success and reached the status of a cult film. It also received a sequel Cube 2: Hypercube (2002) and a prequel Cube Zero (2004).
3. The Truman Show (1998)
The plot follows the ordinary life of Truman Burbank, a 30-year-old insurance agent, in a typical American suburb. Nothing is exciting in his daily routine or his resume.
There are not too many dramatic twists, except for his father’s death right in front of him, drowning in the sea. As well as the mysterious disappearance of his corny wife, a consumer goods enthusiast, and his boring friend Merlin.
Boring indeed. But, if you’re looking for movies like The Hunger Games, not for the action aspect, but for the lethal reality show, and the philosophical questions it raises, then you should watch The Truman Show.
So what exactly is the story here? Well, Truman’s life may be dull, but we’re watching it because we know it’s a fake life! Already at the beginning of the movie, we are told (unlike Truman) that it is a TV show.
The program accompanies the protagonist’s life from birth to adulthood. The Truman Show is watched by viewers all over the world. It’s a 24/7 continuous broadcast for 30 years. All the people in Truman’s life are professional actors – except for Truman himself. The events that dictate his life are led by the series creator, director Christof.
4. Death Race (2008)
If you are searching for movies like The Hunger Games, This film is based on similar elements. In the future, the collapse of the US economy and the subsequent increase in crime rates leads to the rise of privatized prisons.
Claire Hennessey, the sadistic prison warden of Terminal Island Prison, makes profits from broadcasting Death Race. The show is a vehicular combat racing series. To keep the ratings high, Hennessey frames ex-con and former NASCAR driver Jensen Ames for his wife’s murder.
He sees to it that he gets sentenced to life imprisonment in her pen. She then offers him to participate in the game, and he agrees. It’s the only chance for him to be granted freedom and see his baby daughter again. The only thing Hennessey doesn’t take into consideration is Jensen’s skills and determination.
5. The Harry Potter, Film Franchise
One of the biggest brands on earth, having spawned everything from theatre productions to theme parks. The film series tells the story of Harry Potter, a 10-year-old orphan who lives with his cruel relatives. On his 11th birthday, an oversized magician named Hagrid tells him that he is a magician.
Harry Potter is the most famous in the wizarding world because he managed to survive the murderous attack of Lord Voldemort. Voldemort murdered Harry’s parents.
But, the curse he placed on Harry left only a lightning-shaped scar on his forehead. It inexplicably led to the disappearance of the Dark Lord himself. Harry is invited to study at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
On the way, he befriends Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger, who become his best friends. Harry joins his new school, where he makes friends and enemies alike. Focusing on those young magicians, the film series creates a relatively dark universe with moments of feel-good joy and almost unlimited re-watch.
6. V for Vendetta (2006)
The movie plot, based on Alan Moore’s 1980s graphic novel, takes place in futuristic Britain under the rule of a dictatorial-fascist regime. The protagonist of the film (V) hides his face with a mask of the 17th-century British revolutionary Guy Fawkes, who has since become a revolutionary symbol and has been used by many demonstrators around the world.
London is a policed state run by a corrupt fascist government after the world war. V has had enough and decided to use terrorist tactics to fight the oppressive government he now lives under.
He has become one of the most notorious vigilantes to ever live. Used to working alone, things change when he saves Evey from the secret police and finds himself a partner in his war against the country’s oppressors.
7. Hanna (2011)
Hannah Heller is a teenage girl who has lived all her life with her father in the Finnish wilderness. She has grown up quite differently from any other child. From a young age her father, a former CIA agent, trained her for one purpose: to make her the perfect assassin.
One day, her father decides that his daughter is competent enough and sends her on a difficult elimination mission. Hannah embarks on a journey across Europe entirely alone, as she dodges agents sent by a dangerous operative who used to work with her father. Will the time and distance from home be enough to gain back Hannah’s humanity?
8. Circle (2015)
If you like movies like The Hunger Games for the battle royal aspect of it, then this one is for you. Circle sees 50 people in a darkened room, arranged in two concentric circles around a black dome.
They have no recollection as to how they got there. When they attempt to move from their designated platforms or touch others, alarms sound off.
When someone ignores the warning and leaves formation, a beam from the dome kills them, and their body is quickly removed. Every two minutes, another person is killed. Each of them faces imminent death as they have to vote for which person dies next until only one is left standing.
9. The Maze Runner Film Series
When sixteen-year-old Thomas wakes up in a rusty elevator, the only thing he can remember is his first name. He soon discovers that he is trapped with a group of boys inside a huge compound surrounded by stone walls.
No one knows why and how they got there, they only know that every morning stone doors open in the wall that leads out to the labyrinth that surrounds them, from which no one has ever returned.
Thomas quickly becomes comfortable within the group and gets promoted to Runner. The Runners set out and explore the maze to map out every detail in hopes of finding a way out one day.
Thomas decides not only to escape the maze but to solve the riddle and reveal the secret of who brought them there and why.
10. Squid Game (2021)
Elements: Drama. Dystopia. Action. Strong Female Lead.Thriller
Country: South Korea
Sang Gi Han is the protagonist of “Squid Game” (Netflix). He is a betting addict who lives at the expense of his old mother. Sang has a daughter who lives with his ex-wife and her new husband, with whom she has difficulty maintaining contact.
He owes a lot of money to banks and creditors. One day he gets an offer – to join an obscure survival Hunger game-like competition, which includes six rounds and 456 contenders. Whoever wins all six rounds comes out of the gladiator game with a respectable fortune. The Catch: Whoever loses the game will pay with his life.
11. The 100 (TV Series 2014-2020)
The show, created by Jason Rothenberg and aired on CW, takes place 97 years after a nuclear world war that resulted in the almost complete annihilation of the human race, except for the inhabitants of twelve lucky space stations.
Like the biblical Noah who collected animals for the end of the world in an arc surrounded by water, the station people gathered for the end of the world in a station that is surrounded by stars and is called ‘the Arc”.
At the beginning of the series, the Arc houses about 2,400 people, and to maintain a balanced population, each couple is allowed to give birth to only one child and each criminal over the age of 18 is thrown “floating” in space (criminals under 18 are kept in custody).
When failures in the oxygen supply system are discovered in the Arc, 100 young criminals are chosen to be sent to Earth in hopes of possibly re-populating the planet.
12. The Walking Dead (TV Series 2010+)
You’ve probably seen The Walking Dead as it runs for 10 seasons now. However, if you haven’t yet, it’s about a group of people trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic world where the majority of the population has become bloodthirsty zombies (referred to as “walkers”).
The series tells the story of the sheriff’s deputy Rick Grimes, who wakes up from a coma. While in a coma, the world has been taken over by walkers. He becomes the leader of a group of survivors as they attempt to sustain and protect themselves not only against attacks by walkers but by other groups of survivors willing to do whatever it takes to stay alive.
13. The Divergent Series (TV Series 2014-2016)
If you ask us, the movie ‘Divergent’ is mostly an attempt to recreate the success of The Hunger Games. The similarities between the two are numerous, from the teenage characters fronting Divergent to the dystopian future provided for them to roam in.
Also, the fact that everyone in this future world is divided into factions based on traits isn’t very different from The Hunger Games’ idea of districts.
The movie focuses on a world in which humanity is divided into five factions: Abnegation (the selfless), Amity (the peaceful), Candor (the honest), Dauntless (the brave), and Erudite (the intellectual).
The protagonist, Beatrice Prior, is a member of a family belonging to the selfless stream, but in her tests, the result obtained is not unequivocal, which means that she is a “Divergent” and therefore considered a threat to the social order by the government.
Beatrice hides her true identity as a Divergent and embarks on her arduous initiation ceremony, which will turn into a dangerous journey in the depths of her soul and in the face of the problematic society in which she lives, refusing to accept the weak and the unusual.