Newest Review: ... where humans can use hybrid bodies which look like the blue skinned ten foot tall Na'vis. On one mission, Jake is trying to protect ... more
Member Name: lilmsnaughty79
Advantages: Great Visual Spectacle
Disadvantages: Thin Plot
On the distant moon Pandora, humans are desperately mining for the mineral unobtanium. Unfortunately for them Pandora has a native population who just happen to live on top of the biggest deposit of the mineral on the moon.
Paralysed soldier Jake Sully is approached to take over the role in the Avatar programme of his brother, who had been killed, in attempting to infiltrate and obtain the trust of the indigenous people.
James Cameron knows how to make a successful blockbuster, he hasn't made a huge number of films but those he has have generally done very well, with his 1997 movie Titanic being until this film the highest grossing of all time.
The time gap between Cameron's films, in this case twelve years, and his reputation for pushing the boundaries of special effects make any new film big news. The big thing here is the use of 3D. Ok, this is not new, 3D pops up every now again to try and part us from out hard earned cash, this time however the technology should have improved things significantly.
The visual effects are very impressive, especially the battle scenes, the world of Pandora and the creatures that inhabit it are at times breathtaking. This really is one of the most impressive films you will see for special effects, they are used to very good effect.
The first time I saw this, due to having some time to kill away from home and the 3D being sold out, I saw it first in 2D. It was suitably visually impressive even in 2D. A month later I saw the 3D version and to be honest I was quite underwhelmed. Most of the time the film seemed to be just two layers deep, almost like having a cardboard cutout in the background and the actors in the foreground. The most impressive 3D effect
was when some floaty creatures float down around you. I though there would be some more wow moments. I don't know if I would have felt differently if I had not seen the 2D version.
Acting wise the film is totally adequate, Sam Worthington plays the main character of Jake Sully and he does a very good job, this role should
make sure he's not quickly forgotten. Sigourney Weaver teams back up with Cameron, I noticed that her avatar made her look younger. Zoe Salanda is the co-star as Neytiri, a native of Pandora and the love interest. She is very good, although you never get to see what she really looks like
as she's blue all the time of course. Worthington and Salanda have good on screen chemistry and the bond between them is believable. See Star
Trek if you want to see her in the flesh.
The biggest problem with Avatar is the story, it's as thin as paper. This was also the problem with Titanic. Considering how thin the plot is he does a great job of keeping up the interest as it's a lengthy film. I've seen some talk on the internet that the film is basically a rip off of Disney's Pocahontas, I've not seen it but from what I've read there are many similarities to the Earth bound animated story.
Summing up, having seen the film twice now I can say that the second time, even being in 3D was much less impressive, I started to notice the
shortcomings in the plot. For this reason I'm not really sure how well it will on DVD, it's not a film I'll be rushing out to buy straight away. If I was to buy it I would probably punt for the Blu-Ray version as it's the effects that the film is about really. It is worth seeing. If you want to see it on the big screen again or for the first time then you might be in luck as Cameron wants to re-isssue it with some extra footage thrown in.
Main Cast List
Sam Worthington - Jake Sully
Zoe Saldana - Neytiri
Sigourney Weaver - Dr. Grace Augustine
Stephen Lang - Colonel Miles Quaritch
Joel Moore - Norm Spellman
Giovanni Ribisi - Parker Selfridge
Directed By : James Cameron
Running Time : 162 Mins.
Cerificiate : 12A
Summary: A Fantastic Voyage To A Distant World