Sunday, December 20, 2009

Movie Review: "Avatar" An Amazingly Beautiful Movie Experience! (Though Right Wingers will Shudder at the Plot)

My husband and I saw the movie Avatar this weekend. This is Hollywood's most expensive movie ever made, costing over $500M to produce and distribute. It should recoup its costs however, especially since, during the first 3 days of opening, this movie made over $232.2M. Just imagine what it will make overall. Even at two and a half hours, the 3-D special effects of this film were amazing and beautiful to watch. The action sequences were fully packed, and sometimes back to back.

The plot:
In the year 2154, a Human corporation is engaged in the colonization of Pandora, the lush moon of Polyphemus, which is light years from Earth. The Humans seek to exploit Pandora's reserves of a precious mineral called unobtainium. Pandora is inhabited by an indigenous species of humanoids called the Na'vi. This indigenous species stands nine feet tall, with tails and sparkling blue skin. The Na'vi live in peaceful harmony with the natural world that surrounds them although they are considered primitive by Human standards. Humans are unable to breathe the Pandoran atmosphere making peaceful interaction with the Na'vi difficult. Human researchers, led by Dr. Grace Augustine (Sigourney Weaver) created the Avatar Program. This program takes Human DNA and Na'vi DNA, using it to genetically engineer "human-Na'vi hybrid bodies" called "Avatars." A Human who shares genetic material with the Avatar can be mentally linked to it, allowing the Human to control the Avatar's functions and experience what it experiences, while their own Human body sleeps.

Jake Sully is the movie's hero. He is a former U.S. Marine who was wounded and paralyzed from the waist down in combat on Earth. His twin brother Tony was a scientist who died while working on the Avatar program. Jake is recruited, offered and accepts the opportunity to take his brother's place since he shares Tony's genetic DNA and is therefore compatible with his Avatar. However, Dr. Grace is not happy about Jake taking his brother's place since Jake did not have a doctorate, nor over 5 years of training to participate in the program, and never learned the Na'vi's language as his brother had.

Once Jake occupies his Avatar, he is delighted at being able to walk and run once again as a whole being. So begins the adventure. As the adventure unfolds, roll in the love interest, the tame animals, the beauty of the planet, the greedy industrial forces teamed with the military out to deplete the new planet of their rich natural resources, and you see where this adventure can take you.

This movie reminded me of "The Matrix" -- humans in pods whose minds enter a new world; or the episode of Star Trek with crippled Captain Pike inhabited a healed body in a new world.

I enjoyed the movie "Avatar" even though it did run two and a half hours. Yes it was predictable. However, it is probaby the most absorbingly beautiful two and a half hours you will ever experience. You are, after all, taken into a whole new world, complete with your 3D Glasses.

One more note: Yes it probably was a little too politically correct and the right wingers will probably groan through the end if they think about it, but then, they probably don't go to these types of movies anyway. I did read a review by one of them: "The corniest movie ever made about the white man's need to lose his identity and assuage racial, political, sexual and historical guilt."


Proletariat Defender said...

Ok, why would right-wingers (conservatives?) shudder at the plot? I didn't see anything in your post that eludes to that...

Post it or you're off base....

Dee said...

Right Wingers disagree with Global Warming. Agree with Manifest Destiny, etc. etc.

Here are a couple of examples of right winger reviews:

With the imminent release of the science fiction .blockbuster "Avatar," some have characterized it as a multi-million dollar public service announcment for global warming.

Dee said...

Popular Science reported Tuesday:

Unlike [George] Lucas’ more playful science fiction epic ["Star Wars"], [James] Cameron reaches for a heavy environmental message. Avatar is every militant global warming supporter’s dream come true as the invading, technology-worshiping, environment-ravaging humans are set upon by an angry planet and its noble inhabitants.

Proletariat Defender said...

I guess I'll have to watch the movie. Obviously I can't connect the dots between a Sci-Fi film and global warming, except the amount of CO2 released into the atmosphere due to it's production.

Vicente Duque said...

Hope springs eternal in the human breast;
Man never Is, but always To be blest:
The soul, uneasy and confin'd from home,
Rests and expatiates in a life to come.

-Alexander Pope,
An Essay on Man, Epistle I, 1733

Have a Nice Christmas Dee and all friends here !

Dee should be happy with the Health Care Bill advances in Congress. I think that there is going to be a final approval.

What Teddy Roosevelt said about Health Insurance, protection of the poor and the weak, Protection of the Immigrant, Taxation of the Rich, Presidential Campaign 1912

Vicente Duque

Vicente Duque said...

Homage to Two Great Teddys - Washington Post : Senate approves landmark health-care bill Thursday morning that would provide coverage to more 30 million people

Two Great Teddys :

See Washington Post Article under my commentary and Homage to Two Great Teddys

A sigh of relief for people that understand the Importance of this decision.

Not only many Americans, but Canadians, Brits, Aussies, Europeans, Latins, Africans, should celebrate this decision and should be elated. - If America gets sick the rest of the World will suffer the consequences of American Decadence and Political Quaqmire.

So Mr Harry Reid is the Hero of Christmas !

My Homage to Teddy Roosevelt ( and Ted Kennedy ) :

Washington Post :
Senate approves landmark health-care bill
By Shailagh Murray
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, December 24, 2009; 7:20 AM

Senate approves landmark health-care bill :

Some excerpts :

The Senate passed a landmark health-care bill Thursday morning that would provide coverage to more 30 million people and begin a far-reaching overhaul of Medicare and the private insurance market.

Vice President Biden presided over the 60-39, party line vote.

Thursday's vote -- which came on the first Senate session on Dec. 24 in more than five decades -- brings Democrats closer than ever to realizing their 70-year-old goal of universal health coverage.

For the first time, most Americans would be required to obtain health insurance, either through their employer or via new, government-regulated exchanges. Those who can't afford insurance plans would receive federal subsidies. And Medicaid would be vastly expanded to reach millions of low-income children and adults.

Difficult issues must be still resolved in final negotiations with the House, which has passed more liberal health-care reform legislation, and those talks could stretch through January and perhaps into February, Democratic leaders said. But Democrats are increasingly confident that President Obama would sign a bill into law in early 2010.

"Health care reform is not a matter of 'if,' " White House spokesman Robert Gibbs told reporters Wednesday. "Health care reform now is a matter of 'when.' "

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid declared after Wednesday's vote that: "We stand on the doorstep of history." But he declined to speculate about negotiations with the House.

Youth, Minorities, Politics :

Vicente Duque

MMPete said...

Wasn't it Al Gore the Democrat who studied global warming and preached about its bad affects?

Whether or not global warming is a threat controlling our population growth makes sense no matter what your political views are. It isn't just a right winger phylosphy.

I haven't seen this movie but it appears the plot has to do with the "right" to protect one's territory from a foreign invasion. Kind of reminds you of what is going on in this country right now, doesn't it?

MMPete said...

Well I went to see this movie today. It truly was an outstanding cinema spectacle. I chose to see it in 3-D.

I didn't see any relation point to global warming. I didn't see anything related to manifest destiny ethier.

What I saw was an indigenous peoples trying desperately to hold on to their way of life and culture from a foreign invasion. Much like Americans today are trying to do against the millions of invaders who have entered our country illegally. If you sympathized with the indigenous in that movie it would only make sense to sympathize with Americans for the same reason.

One might argue "well they are only looking for work" but the destructive outcome is still the same.

Dee said...

First, I am very glad you enjoyed the movie.

Second, movie enjoyment is just like beauty, in the eyes of the beholder.

Finally, many reviewers I read compared it to Europeans invading America, taking away their land in search of gold and other riches of the land. And read wiki for the definition of manifest destiny.

MMPete said...

What is ironic is that it is those very same people who are complaining about the European invasion to our country are also descendants of the Spanish Europeans aka the Mestizos of Mexico. Kind of weird to complain about the Europeans when their ancestors were also European, isn't it?

MMPete said...

Man·i·fest Des·ti·nyNOUN
1. historical expansionist doctrine: the doctrine or belief prevalent in the 19th century that the United States had the God-given right to expand into and possess the whole of the North American continent.

The U.S. only makes up one country in the North American continent. So the U.S. did not expand or ever possess the whole continent. So much for the "manifest destiny" concept. It never happened and I don't see our country even trying to make that come true.

MMPete said...

You got me to thinking about manifest destiny again and the desire to expand one's country and/or ethnic group. Isn't this what hispanics are doing and not non-hispanics on the north american continent? I mean consider this, non-hispanics are only the majority in the U.S. and Canada but the rest of the continent is dominated by hispanics and are on their way to becoming the majority in this country also. Are they practicing manifest destiny themselves? Is that concept on a different foot today opposed to what was understood about it in the past?

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