So tonight I went to see Avatar the 2 hour and 40 minute technically brilliant action movie. I was pleasantly surprised with the incredible special effects and the realistic way that they portrayed the “blue people.”
At this point if you haven’t seen the movie and plan on it STOP READING.
However, there were a few things that I’d like to critisize slightly. I don’t want to take away from all the incredible work that all the people did on that movie because, believe me, I really thought it was amazing but…
1. I thought that it had a conflict of interest when the plot was being developed. The native people have a really strong connection to the earth and a fairly peaceful nature amongst one another even though they are warriors and often kill animals. I think that they sacrificed a little bit of the values of the native people by having a fifteen minute fight scene where they were incredibly violent and unforgiving for killing people. There is a scene earlier in the movie when they kill an animal and afterward they “pray” (for lack of a better word) that the animal will go to a higher, better place and how it is now a part of their people. In any case, the point is, I just didn’t think that the way it was handled was a completely accurate representation of the native people up to that point.
2. The camera work for the majority of the movie, up until the big “fight scene” was very smooth and didn’t make you feel like you were behind a camera. I liked that because it just made up feel like you were there subconsciously without making you feel like you were in the middle of all the fighting and action, if you know what I mean. Anyways once the big battle scene started the director did a lot of fast zooming and “shakey cam” (as I like to affectionattely call it) and it seemed more like someone with a camera who didn’t know exactly what was going on and the camera’s actions were reactions to the action in the scene. I LOVE this kind of camera work when a director sticks to it for the entire work (The Office for example). But I felt like it compromised the feel of the movie up until that point by so suddenly changing.
So those are my main problems with the movie but otherwise there were a lot of excellent things about it…like
1. The connections to Americans killing the Native Americans and a lot of other genocides. It also had a lot of religous/spiritual undertones. Especially a referance to rastafari. (They kept saying “their spirit will provide” which is the same as “Ja will provide”) So I don’t know exactly how I feel about all the cross referencing and combining but I’m pretty sure I like it. I’m at least incredibly impressed.
2. They made up an ENTIRE LANGUAGE. Nuff’ said.
3. It introduced the incredibly comforting idea that everyone who dies becomes part of nature and they hinted at a biological scientific explanation in the movie.
4. I liked how the natives were kind of a mix between people, cats, giants and smurfs. Good stuff. It made their physicality very interesting.
Anyways, I don’t mean to crap on the movie or anything but I thought I would share what I thought about it. I would like to conclude this “review” by saying that I thought it was a really great film and I’d probably give it a B+/A- (which, by the way, is not a real grade Ms. Blair.)