Well, everyone’s said it, so let me say it. The CGI is phenomenal. James Cameron has really created an incredible visual treat. However, it really shines in 3-D, which was much more bearable for me this time round, compared to A Christmas Carol, since I had my contacts in and wasn’t trying to wear the CGI glasses over my regular glasses. The downside of the 3-D is that once you get it for your home, you can bet it’s not going to be anywhere near as impressive as it was in the theater. So if you’re going to watch this movie, see it while it’s still in the theater, in 3-D, because you won’t be able to appreciate it fully any other way.
And now it’s time for me to do what everyone else has also been doing. Bash the story.
Maybe that’s a little unfair. Really, the story wasn’t anything original. We’ve all seen it before, and while it would be nice for Hollywood to give us an original storyline for once, the story at least took itself seriously, which made it watchable. The foreshadowing was painfully obvious, but in a way it was like watching a legend. The kind of story where we all know what’s going to happen, but it’s still epic when it does happen.
The main characters weren’t really original in any way, again, nothing we haven’t seen. But they fit into the story. On characters, I will say I enjoyed the Colonel. He was a heartless bastard, and very entertaining to watch. While he was evil, he was still the kind of villain you like to see. The scene where he jumps from his crashing gunship in a mech, and lands while the ship crashes in the background was cheese, but the tasty kind of cheese.
One of the moments that made me laugh was when I realized that Joel Moore was playing a side character in this movie. Suddenly that episode of Bones that was one big forty minute long add for Avatar makes sense.
As for the music, it was grand, sweeping, with strong tribal elements to it. It’s also partially the same soundtrack as used in Gladiator. Seriously, James Horner? Oh well, it was only painfully obvious during the conflict scenes, other than that the music set a grand tone for the grand scale the movie was working on.
Now, the last element I would like to cover is the love story. And yes, it was very, very strange to see this unfold between an alien and a human in an alien’s body (is that some kind of gay metaphor, like X-Men 2?). But, while the visuals were odd in this story, the love story overall wasn’t the worst Hollywood has ever produced. (Oh, I’m gonna get my butt kicked for that one.)
So, overall, I know a lot of people say the movie is bets towards the end, when the plot starts. But really, I think the movies strongest point is the beginning. I enjoyed watching the amazing CGI and even learning about the Na’vi culture (gratuitous use of apostrophes FTW!). The plot itself, like I’ve said, is fairly weak, but I figure give credit where credit is due.
Should you watch it? If you’re not a hardcore story-ite, I highly recommend this movie. If story is crucial for you to enjoy a movie, then you might want to sit this one out, or watch it and write your own story once the plot starts. If you are going to watch it for the CGI, then make sure you go see it in 3-D.