Spitzit’s House

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Movie Review – Avatar by James Cameron (Possible Mild Spoiler Alert)

I went and saw the highly anticipated James Cameron movie, Avatar, last weekend, and I have to say I was both impressed and disappointed at the same time.  I watched it in IMAX 3-D and the movie was a visual masterpiece, really spectacular.  However, as you start really getting into the story itself, I couldn’t help but think I have seen this before.

Was I having a wierd case of dejavu?  Not at all…I was just watching a very unoriginal story.  I have seen other reviews that discuss political undertones, and important messages, etc. in this movie, but that just wasn’t the case for me.   I turned to my wife in the middle of the movie and said “This is Dances With Wolves set on a different planet”.    Outsider befriends local natives, becomes one of the them, hooks up with chief’s daughter, has antagonistic relationship with the main warrior, but eventually wins his respect, and eventually the outsider’s own race of people rolls into town killing and pillaging everything in site, and outsider comes in to save the day.

The fact is that many parts of this movie reminded me of other movies such as Aliens (walking robotic machines controlled by a human driver), Return of the Jedi (battle in the jungle with local natives using their own knowledge of the environment to eventually defeat the technologically advanced enemy).    Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoyed the movie, but it was not as great as I expected which is too often the case.    I saw the highly regarded District 9 which sucked big time and qualifies as one of my biggest disappointments of the decade.

I do recommend Avatar if for nothing else, because it is visually awesome.  However, don’t expect to be blown away by an equally awesome story line.  There is nothing original or political about it other than the imperialistic nature of a race that intends to crush the peaceful nature-loving natives of a foreign land.

That is my critical opinion…and I am sticking with it.


December 24, 2009 Posted by | Movie Reviews | , , , , , , | 1 Comment