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James Cameron's Avatar

The movie, that is.

Saw it last night on a "RealD" screen. Without spoiling it, here's the precis.

It was 3 hours. Do not drink soda in the early part of the film. I did not and I was happy.
It was gorgeous. It used but did not abuse the "RealD" 3D technology.
A huge selling point was how it got past the "dead eyes" "uncanny valley" effect of many high-CGI works previously. It ... really, really did a good job.

It was, yes, trope-tasmic, trope-tastic, and trope-a-licious.
But with three hours in which to show you the characters, even the obvious, in your face bad guys are allowed enough screen time that you can see there is more to them than that.

There were two places which got a HUGE audience reaction, one a disbelieving groan and muttering of disgust at the words coming out of one character (but ... they were appropriate to the character) ... the other was at the end. The audience broke into applause with some cheering.

I have not seen that happen for a movie in a very long time.

There will be people complaining later about the heavy-handed political message, the politics evident in the story, and even about some technical details. Ignore that. It's not important to what's really going on.

Watch the pretty. In a theatre if you can, or on the best quality HD TV you can find.


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 19th, 2009 06:37 am (UTC)
Seeing it tomorrow in RealD with my kitbashed glasses. Will be sure to smuggle in a diet-appropriate snack. :)
Dec. 19th, 2009 08:16 pm (UTC)
Why kitbashed glasses? I used the ones they provided and they fit over my regular lenses OK, but if you have a better way ...
Dec. 19th, 2009 10:56 pm (UTC)
I wear large glasses to begin with. Stock RealD glasses will sort of fit over them, but they flex in the middle which warps the view slightly. So I modified the joints so that the sides will move out another ten degrees, which does the trick.

BTW, you weren't kidding...Chekov's entire gun cabinet is in there.

I did appreciate the Prolemurs as a nod to anyone who might be wondering why the Na'vi are four-limbed and everything else is hexapodal, though. A lot of the science went utterly unexplained, but the Prolemurs let them fill a storytelling slot (show that not EVERYTHING wants to kill you) while laying out a little evolutionary biology.

I do wonder who let the Na'vi get access to martial arts movies, though...unless the "cannot pour into a full cup" metaphor is an example of the universality of cliches. ;)
Dec. 20th, 2009 06:22 am (UTC)
There was a great deal of sophisticated expression that was intended to point out that living a technologically primitive lifestyle does not require that one be an unsophisticated monkey.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )


Steve Hutchison

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