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Old Dec 29, 2009, 08:14 AM   #16
Iwata
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Re: Avatar 2009

A planet of furries!

That alone had me rooting for the humans.

Wipe them out!
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Old Jan 7, 2010, 04:45 PM   #17
Tack
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Re: Avatar 2009

I thoroughly enjoyed it in 3D. Fantastic SFX. so you can see the story coming from a mile away but its still a fun movie to experience.
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Old Jan 8, 2010, 03:26 AM   #18
SF_not_Sci-Fi
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Re: Avatar 2009

Quote:
Originally Posted by Iwata
A planet of furries!

That alone had me rooting for the humans.

Wipe them out!
Of course you would, you Nazi
Luckily there was a human there to lead the resistance, because as we all know, those savage natives need a white guy to free them- a white guy who very much needs assuage his racial guilt while maintaining his white privilege by becoming one of the natives and betraying his own race, while still remaining firmly in charge of the natives. It's Dances With Wolves all over again, isn't it? The white boy's fantasy of running away, joining the noble savages, and being made chief because of his inherent superiority is an oldie, but it's a goodie.
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Old Jan 12, 2010, 08:37 AM   #19
HighWiredSith
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Re: Avatar 2009

Quote:
Originally Posted by SF_not_Sci-Fi
Of course you would, you Nazi
Luckily there was a human there to lead the resistance, because as we all know, those savage natives need a white guy to free them- a white guy who very much needs assuage his racial guilt while maintaining his white privilege by becoming one of the natives and betraying his own race, while still remaining firmly in charge of the natives. It's Dances With Wolves all over again, isn't it? The white boy's fantasy of running away, joining the noble savages, and being made chief because of his inherent superiority is an oldie, but it's a goodie.

Well put - couldn't help but notice myself that the Navi, like their Navajo and Samurai brethren, were pretty much helpless until their standard issue, guilt laden average white guy came to save them.

BTW - I hated the movie, really did. Preachy, poorly written, simplistic, more plot holes and inconsistencies than George Lucas could conjure on a good day all wrapped in what is, I have to admit, the best damn special effects I've ever seen.
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Old Jan 12, 2010, 09:06 AM   #20
HighWiredSith
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Re: Avatar 2009

Did anyone notice how the basic plots to Avatar and District 9 were identical? Humans exploiting alien races, treating them bad, human goes over to the other side, allows them to successfully fight back, etc.

Couldn't help but contrast these two movies - the one, a fresh approach, unique, unafraid to be unorthodox and a little quirky, and feeling like a very real movie despite it's outrageous premise...the other, a billion dollar special effects laden behemoth of a movie whose plot was practically paint by numbers with horrible, unrealistic dialogue, one dimensional caricatures instead of real characters...
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Old Jan 14, 2010, 07:09 PM   #21
Seraph
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Re: Avatar 2009

Quote:
Originally Posted by HighWiredSith
Well put - couldn't help but notice myself that the Navi, like their Navajo and Samurai brethren, were pretty much helpless until their standard issue, guilt laden average white guy came to save them.

BTW - I hated the movie, really did. Preachy, poorly written, simplistic, more plot holes and inconsistencies than George Lucas could conjure on a good day all wrapped in .
See? + Predictable and that is pretty much what I'm expecting, plus, I (so far) dislike the blue characters on sight.

However I made a comprise, I said I'd go if it was IMAX (yes 3D). So IMAX it is, tomorrow night.

If my expectations are this low going in, I might actually be presently surprised, plus IMAX with big sweeping planet scenes in 3d? That's got to be fun.
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Old Jan 15, 2010, 08:45 AM   #22
HighWiredSith
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Re: Avatar 2009

You know, I probably should have seen Avatar before I read like a billion reviews of it. I knew I was going be preached at mercilessly about every hot button issue from white man guilt to save to trees to war for oil, to blah, blah, effin blah. As a result, I thoroughly hated the movie, despite the fact that visually, yeah, it blew me out of my seat.

And if you think it was the message that made me hate it - I think District 9, which was just as preachy, probably more so, and preachy on many of the same topics, is the best SciFi movie of the year (have not seen Moon yet so maybe I should withhold my final verdict). I don't mind being preached at if the preaching is done in a fun, unique, and entertaining way.
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Old Jan 15, 2010, 09:35 AM   #23
Iwata
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Re: Avatar 2009

Quote:
I think District 9, which was just as preachy, probably more so, and preachy on many of the same topics, is the best SciFi movie of the year

Absolutely. Hell of a fine movie.
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Old Jan 19, 2010, 01:32 PM   #24
JACKER
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Re: Avatar 2009

Hey, I enjoyed the flick. It was entertaining. I loved the FX and the action. The story is nothing great and a lot of characters are one dimensional (like the main bad guy--he was just a bad guy). The Navi style of living one with nature was also fascinating. Of course all living things exist within nature, not outside of it, as our minds tend to create that false dichotomy. Perhaps the Navi, more or less, simply acknowledge the fact. It was a fun watch and I'm not sure if I was supposed to expect anything more than that because of the film's budget and what not.

Also, as a side, basically every sci-fi flick with humans interacting with aliens is not really about humans and aliens, but are metaphors for how humans treat other humans in reality, whether at a present stage or at some point in history. "District 9" is about African apartheid and famine, "E.T" is even sort of about how we treat the sick and dying, and "Starship Troopers" is representative of soldiers needing to dehumanize the enemy to the status of a cockroach. And so on. Therefore it shouldn't seem like any big secret that "Avatar" isn't any different in that respect.
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Old Jan 24, 2010, 04:25 PM   #25
ThinWLady
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Re: Avatar 2009

Jacker said well about Avatar. Personally I felt with Avatar (3D) the same joy that I felt years ago with Star Wars. Of course Avatar wasn't brilliantly written, but if we compare its screenplay to old Hollywood classics (let's just say for example Gone With the Wind, Gigi...) they're not much more impressive. Also, the new visual depth can be so amazing for some viewers that it could be difficult to follow a less simple story. BTW, it was great that they didn't just try to scare the audience with the 3D effects. Eventually people will get tired to see things thrown at them from the screen.

In Avatar 3D is used differently. Everything that was shown in this movie felt more natural and real because of it.

What becomes to District 9 - it was a big disappointment to me. Yes, the movie started well, it was very promising, although it was a bit preachy too... but then it lost all its logic, began to look like a cheap video game and eventually I found myself hating the movie, because I couldn't feel sympathy to any of its characters. Okay, it's pretty also impossible to feel sympathy for example to any of the characters of Tarkovsky's Mirror. However, Tarkovsky's movie has something else to give, something that makes it awesome experience. Unfortunately District 9 had nothing else to give but boring fuss.
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Old Jan 24, 2010, 05:30 PM   #26
Sharky
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Re: Avatar 2009

Some photos of myself dressed as a Na'vi at Bizarre Magazine's Ball last year for your amusement:











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Old Jan 25, 2010, 06:45 AM   #27
Demosthemighty
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Re: Avatar 2009

I read somewhere that people have killed themselves because they can't be a na'vi. I refuse to watch this movie just based on that
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Old Jan 25, 2010, 07:33 AM   #28
Iwata
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Re: Avatar 2009

RDA all the way, baby!

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Old Jan 25, 2010, 09:32 AM   #29
HighWiredSith
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Re: Avatar 2009

Now that Avatar has officially become the highest grossing movie of all time. Now that the awards givers are lining up to bestow as much meaningless hardware on James “King-O-The-World” Cameron as possible. Now that everyone on the planet with access to a Cineplex and $15 has seen this movie. Now maybe it’s time we consider how this movie, yes the highest grossing, destined to be most awarded, first Science Fiction film to ever win Best Picture could have truly been great.

Little doubt in my mind, Avatar is a momentous achievement in filmdom. The first time I saw Pandora in 3D I was instantly reminded of my grandmother’s description of seeing the Wizard of Oz when she was a kid. It was the first color film she would ever see and hearing her describe what she felt, how in awe she was when Dorothy opened the door of her black and white farm house to reveal the color splendor of Oz…well damn, I felt the exact same way. What a tremendous achievement in the creative process, the creation and entire other-world, familiar enough to handle yet alien enough to marvel at over and over. And not just the landscapes. The Sci-Fi environs were the best I’ve ever seen, from the cockpits of drop ships to the control center of the mining base the inner workings of those Mechwarrior suits I found myself in literal jaw dropping awe again and again and again.

And yet, for all its wonder and achievement, what a cut rate, paint-by-numbers story whose plot devices might as well have been listed out for us during the previews. There was nothing I didn’t see coming a mile away. Worse, the characters were flat and one dimensional and the protagonist, handicapped marine Jake Sully, was the most un-dynamic lead character I think I’ve seen in a major movie in years. This includes his role in Terminator Salvation and every character in the G.I. Joe and Transformer movies.

So how could Avatar have been better. Here’s my thoughts.

The first thing I would do would be take out the ridiculous, contrived love story. Quiddich was right, the entire premise to me was, Scully gets a little Navi tail and suddenly he goes native. How much better would the story have been were it built around a strong friendship between Scully and a Navi warrior. In turn, why does the middle aged, guilt ridden white guy have to be the quintessential savior of the natives? Would it have not made the story much more intriguing to have Scully befriend the real savior (forgot what Cameron called the chosen one) of the Navi, maybe help him along but ultimately the Navi save themselves?

Secondly – what’s with the thousands of mindless, evil marines? How cheap a plot device to make all of your protagonists one dimensional, mindless thugs. And damn, just when I thought the Burke character (Giavano Ribisi) was going to realize the error of his ways, that his pulling the trigger resulted in hundreds of deaths – nope, it’s corporate greed as usual. For me, this static protagonist is elementary writing from a writer who, like so many when it comes to our pet political causes, refuse to see those on the other side as real, rational, thinking people (see political thread in the mess). I guess in Cameron’s mind, the man who runs the big, greedy, capitalist, environment destroying corporation is incapable of humane thought or action, totally unable to realize he might be wrong or unwilling to give up big profits to save his soul or his humanity. So, we have thousands of mindless marines, fighting for money, dying because they can’t conjure up an ounce of sympathy or empathy for those they are told to kill. They don’t care about nature and they only care about money – except for Quiddich (who I loved btw – total badass – and yes, it is okay to have one static, mindless thug for a bad guy) who apparently just loved kicking ass.

Thirdly - I felt that Navi were way too Native American – seriously, their language, their look, it was just, odd, not alien enough, too Navajo. I also scratched my head at the decision to tie the Navi spiritualism directly into something tangible. It felt very medichlorian to me, like the writer found himself totally unable to accept the spiritual aspect of his creations on faith but felt this need to ground them in the physical. As a result, the seemingly spiritual Navi were just parasites tapping into the very real energy source of their planet.

Again, Avatar is a true spectacle and a monument of a movie. But good grief, how can I not feel like it was written by a 12 year old? Imagine the possibility had Cameron hired real writers, kind of like George Lucas did with The Empire Strikes Back.
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Old Jan 25, 2010, 12:07 PM   #30
Optimus Prime
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Re: Avatar 2009

Quote:
Originally Posted by HighWiredSith
Now that Avatar has officially become the highest grossing movie of all time.

Actually, Sith, if we go by adjusted dollars of Domestic Gross, Avatar isn't even close to the highest grossing film of all time. That would go to Gone With The Wind, followed by Star Wars, The Sound of Music and E.T. Little Avatar is just 26th on the list of all times.
http://boxofficemojo.com/alltime/adjusted.htm
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