Great graphics are the signature of this movie…which I regard as more of a “fantasy” than a “sci-fi” story.
Filled with anti-industrial clichés, Camerons “back to the cave” enviro-fascist beliefs crawl out onto to screen to present themselves to unsuspecting patrons who were looking for a reason to justify their fears of progress and their wanton destruction of civilization. That being said… if we evaluate the movie less for its hideous political messages and more on the basis of a sort of interplanetary Lord of the Rings, we actually find a fun movie. I liked the vast landscapes of rain-forest like colors and depths, it was almost as if Cameron wanted to make deep-sea life part of open air reality. I liked the fact that a life-bearing planet could be portrayed as significantly different from earths. I liked its rebellious and treasonous nature with the antagonists and protagonists. It was interesting to see how nature on Pandora was meldable with intelligent creatures. There was a certain, values affirming, spiritual bonding between the planets plant and animal life, its intelligent occupants, and its allies in the opposing invasion force. Many probably pop a little chubby with Camerons moral equivocations, Lucas yanked them off similarily with an evolving Vader in the Star Wars films.. as if the Bush war on terror theology was Vaders inspiration to “go dark”, in Avatar, the message is that all corporate, or profit seeking individuals and entities (esp- mining entities) are demons from the parallel sith world we refer to as Wall Street. They want to rape the earth, starting with the Amazon, then strike out for Pandora to bulldoze a slice of someone elses property. (Incidentally- anyone noticed that “property rights” do not exist in The Cameron-Verse?) This is where I relate Avatar more to fantasy, and much less to sci-fi. It was forged from the green fantasy of nihilistic envirofascism…just as Terminator was forged from the mind-numbing anti-war, anti-technology goblins of the cold war era. Both Terminator, and Avatar are excellent movies, but were designed to separate the thinking soul from its life enhancing, pro-survival ability to use reason and logic. In another sense, Avatar gives new meaning to the Aristotelian observation that ‘nature, to be conquered..must be obeyed’. Which means, don’t jump off that Cameronian cliff until you have invented the bungy cord, and measured it stretched to the equivalent of terminal velosity..and…please.. don’t expect to land on a giant puffy mushroom one thousand feet below. Gaia warns, but does not protect…she wants balance, and will deal with the unbalanced by keeping their numbers low, and their bungy cords, too long. (ref-Darmin Awards)
If you have not seen it yet, I still recommend Avatar. I picked it up because the rental store was out of “The Hangover” (still have not seen it), it was available for seven days, and too many to number have urged me to view it.
I won’t urge anyone myself, I liked Titanic as well, but did not go psychotic and view it 12 times with boxes of tissues. In a sense, Avatar is similar to Titanic, made to stir emotions, and stop people from thinking. Sort of like Facebooks Farmville. But since the FX is much better, its worth a few bucks to rent.