Monday, February 15, 2010

Avatar - Movie Review

Okay, okay, so we finally saw Avatar and you know what? I didn't hate it. Yeah, it's kinda sorta about what its critics say - it's do-gooder, nature-worshiping, military-hating, re-telling of the Pocahontas story claptrap but it's visually stunning claptrap and if you're interested in state-of-the-art digital effects and animation, then you can't pass this up. (Oh, wait. It's box-office numbers tell me you didn't pass this up. It seems we're the last ones in the world to finally see this movie.) Story-wise? Meh. For about two-thirds of the movie, I forgot all about the critics and was mesmerized by all the purty colors state-of-the-art digital effects and animation and purty colors but the final third, while undoubtedly thrilling, completely unravels everything that came before it. Sorry, I'm just not gonna root for the utter destruction of well-intentioned characters.

We would've preferred a plain ol' regular 2D experience over the 3D - really, the 3D effects didn't add much to the presentation and the glasses were more distracting than anything. Yep, the fantastic aspects of the fictional world were limp. Essentially, Pandora and its creatures are like Earth's only bigger and of different hues. And you can just about hear the metaphorical wheels creaking underneath as the plot turns.

Will it win Best Picture? I hope not; Up would be far more deserving. Though I'd be the first to argue that a film's box office can't be ignored when it comes to best picture, that's not the sole factor - Star Wars never won Best Picture and Avatar shouldn't either. Though it's dazzling, it lacks a soul.

(Looking for a compelling sci-fi movie? Try Moon. )

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