Friday, January 8, 2010
Hilarious link. In any case, I had mixed feelings about this film. Regardless of plotline, the visuals were stunning. Frankly I wouldn't mind seeing an entire 3 hour long movie of some dude running through a forest. However, it soon becomes abundantly clear that James Cameron, regardless of his long backlog of sci fi films, still cannot write successful (i.e. plausible) sci fi films. Avatar straddles the thin line between fantasy and sci fi, and oftentimes it simply seems unbelievable. As my friend Anthony commented, he taps into the beliefs of indigenous American tribes, and certain Asian and African ones in the "interconnectedness of all things," but makes it literal. In Avatar, the humanoids simply cannot live without being connected (literally) to each other. This is wonderful for environmentalist propaganda, but it really is just that... propaganda.
Also, unobtainium? Really? Unobtainium? If the director wasn't Cameron I would swear that the word was used ironically. The plot is full of holes and film cliches, for better and for worse. It certainly makes for an engaged average Joe, and plenty of good reviews. Who wouldn't like a conglomeration of Pocahontas, Dances with Wolves, Star Trek, Apocalypse Now, and bits and pieces of every. other. major. Hollywood. film. thrown in?
Where this film succeeds-- apart, of course, from 3D visual effect awesomeness and those killer Buddy Holly-esque glasses (to keep!)-- is in its war movie aspect. Environmentalism aside, this is a pretty incredible war film, and I'm a sucker for "noble cause" war movies (unless, of course, it's Inglourious Basterds, but I'll rant about that another time). It was a film that should have been made, considering the time, and considering the audience. Americans need a film like Avatar, which inspires environmentalism and compassion, and practically makes a mockery of capitalism (or perhaps that was my own projection...) I'm very curious to see where this film makes it in the history of World Cinema. Is this what the later generations will remember? Is this really the Apocalypse Now of our time, instead of The Hurt Locker?