|02.20.10||Bullock IMAX|| So Avatar... Finally saw it! Couple things:|
-glad I saw it at the IMAX. The visual fidelity really is the star of this movie. Everything I saw on the screen looked real even though I'd probably guess 95% of it wasn't. That's really astounding.
-Why do I think 3D televisions will fail? Because even in a friggin IMAX theater with amazing 3D technology unfolding before me (the best 3D I've seen to date... I'm still holding out for a chance to see Dial M for Murder theatrically though), I still FORGET that I'm watching it in 3D like 40 minutes in. By the end I was actually suspicious that the film had somehow become less 3D. I had to take my glasses off to make sure it was still blurry. Is it technically awesome? yes. Did I ultimately feel like it brought me into the movie more? Nope, at least not consciously. Maybe I'm wrong and if I watch it twice more one in 2D and them immediately again in 3D I'll realize that it is indeed a massive improvement, but how is Panasonic going to sell that to people? "Don't believe your brains, 3D really IS awesome!"
-blue? really? I love the scale of the aliens but why did they have to be blue cat-people? And however Zoe Saldana looks in real life, as a Navi she looks an awful lot like Jessica Alba. And there's not a single creature with hair on this entire planet? I don't understand why people get depressed because Pandora isn't real when literally everything on the planet could kill us for sport. They couldn't have thrown a dog or mouse in there or something? And I get that the forest is phosphorescent but still... Blue? Blue people with cat faces? Do I really have to overcome this hurdle to enjoy the multitudes of other stuff that is awesome in this movie?
-The antagonist was also a let-down for me. He seemed like if Billy Zane was a terminator. I really miss the relative complexity of Michael Biehn in The Abyss or Paul Reiser in Aliens.
-I know it's sci-fi and everything, but the shallow masking of us raping native americans and killing our mother gaia is a little grating to me. I've already noted this (probably with WALL-E or the remake of The Day The Earth Stood Still), but somehow I have no problem swallowing allegories on nuclear war, racism, class systems, or religion; but the environment gets to me. Go preach to China and Africa and Russia about your goddamn carbon footprint and let me have my goddamn air conditioning on when it's hot outside.
-Anyway, did I mention the visual fidelity? Awesome. And all of Cameron's technology was also great. He has a gift of thinking the futuristic stuff out enough to make the gadgets seem used-in-real-life practical rather than just futur-y.
-Fuckin Celine Dion.
All in all I liked it a lot. Thankfully this isn't Titanic Part 2 like I thought it might be. I'm really curious to see how it holds up in Home viewings... which is pretty cool. It seems like more and more these days movies are made more for TV than theaters; I think it's safe to say Cameron's trying to fight that trend.
Most of all, I'm kind of relieved that I liked it. Not sure if I LOVED it or anything, but this saves me a lot of debates. i was really getting nervous there that this would be another Titanic and I'd be forced to argue against Cameron, who I usually love (unlike Micah, who seems to hate with a passion). So... oh right, the story.
It was alright. Honestly, a ton has already been said about its genericism and similarity to District 9. I think that 12 years ago this story was much more "advanced" than it is today. I think maybe just the concept of the avatar and the process would tweak way more sci-fi geeks back then before the explosion of the internet and general disconnecting effect it's having on us. And the environment wasn't as big of a deal back then so maybe it would be seen as more forward-thinking and less on the green bandwagon (at least to me). Either way though, the story's pretty basic and nothing to really write more than a paragraph about.
Wouldn't it be funny if Cameron was really good friends with Ed Begley Jr. and he let him read the script a decade ago and Begley came back and was like "Not yet, Jim. The world just isn't ready to listen." And Jim said "But I just made the biggest movie in history and I'm the goddamn king of the world! What excuse can I possibly give to make people believe I'm willingly holding off on my next film for 5, 10 years?" And Ed says "Blame technology." So Cameron says that and immediately half of Digital Domain and untold amounts of people are out of work just because Ed Begley Jr. wanted Jim Cameron's next movie to come out when we were already feeling guilty about turning on our lights at night. Maybe that isn't as funny as I thought it would be a hundred words ago. Maybe I'm just rambling at this point... rambling.