Avatar: James Cameron's Ostensibly Revolutionary Spacey 3D Cinematic D&D Campaign


Yeah. Somehow I suspect that the few real YouTube hits are going to result in a whole bunch of attempts that will fall completely flat.


Oh, you're just saying that based on the entire history of internet video demonstrating exactly what you just said.


I know, weak premise as usual... ;)

I actually think it's going to get WORSE. It's possible.


That's the best review of Avatar yet.


Cameron goes “Full Kurtz”

I apologize if this example of the man’s lunacy has already been posted and discussed here, but I just saw it.

“Dear president of another country. Do you know how awesome I am? No? That would make sense, I wouldn’t expect a mere president to know how much money I generate on behalf of all humanity. It’s over a billion now! That’s a lot. Let me tell you all about it while I act like I am better than you in every single way.”

Also, I have decided that from now on, I shall refer to the man as “Cameraon,” because in spite of his massive douchiness, that 3D camera thing he helped to invent is actually really cool. I wouldn’t want anyone to forget that, myself included. I don’t think I’ll ever be a president of a country, so I’ll never get a letter from James Cameraon to remind me about his past, present, and prophesied accomplishments.


Cameron can be a douche all he wants. Makes no difference to me. I’d prefer he recapture the quality he was able to achieve between 1984 and 1991, but genre movies are definitely stronger with him than without him.


Avatar was released on Blu-Ray today and I swung by Target it to pick it up for 19.99. Pure anecdotal evidence suggests that this will be the biggest and fastest selling Blu-Ray to date.

My target had like 6 copies left on Blu-Ray but like 800 billion DVD copies left.


Sula and I watched this last weekend and…well… Does anyone remember when James Cameron made movies that were filled with anima? Filled with life and urgency and energy? The Terminator is basically a 90 minute chase. Aliens still has the power to leave a viewer exhausted. We both thought Avatar was a giant snooze. Like Titanic, where it takes half the film to get to the good part - the ship sinking - in Avatar it takes 90 minutes for the 'dozers to show up at the World Tree,or whatever the hell it was. Ugh. Awful script, no real villain - Oooo, the Corporation is the villain, how fucking Woodstock of you - cardboard characters, terrible dialogue, and is it just me, or is Sam Worthington the blandest action hero ever? First Terminator: Salvation and now this: he’s got all the screen presence of a floor lamp. The only parts of this film I enjoyed were, well, it looked great, but so what? Wallpaper can look great but when you pull it up there’s nothing under it but brick. And I thought Zoe Saldana was amazing; she really connected with the reality.

But, whatever, it served a billion. Just like McDonalds: empty calories.


The crazy thing is that Worthington is somehow sleepwalking his way into all these major rolls.

Terminator? Check
Avatar? Check
Clash of the Titans? Check

Did you know he’s been pegged as the favorite to become the new Bond if Daniel Craig doesn’t return for the next one, which is very possible considering the next movie just hit all sorts of big delay roadblocks.


He is the Jenna Jameson of non-porn cinema.


I realize this is going to come out of left field, but I was talking to some friends about this last night and metta’s post made me want to throw this out there.

Please do yourself a favor and see How to Train Your Dragon while it is in theaters. Please see it in 3D.

Do this especially if you felt abused by Avatar. Or, heck, even if you did not. And definitely do this if you, like me, have felt like saying “Fuck 3D” after the recent other 3D films to come after Avatar.

It’s so worth it.


“Pain. Love it.”


Agreed entirely.

“Thanks for nothing, you useless reptile.”


I saw this for the first time today, 2D Blu-Ray version. I agree with the previously linked review by Devin Faraci. I don’t care that the story was unoriginal, but I do care that it was so indifferently written. Although Pandora is visually striking, the setting still felt lifeless because the characters had no psychological mass - they all seemed like placeholders.

Taken together, Titanic and Avatar provide a good case study on the difference between a plot with inevitable major events (Titanic) and one with predictable major events (Avatar). An event is inevitable if I know it will happen because I can see the characters intentionally, or unintentionally, maneuvering themselves into position - the hubris of the White Star Line in Titanic, or the self destructive despair of Nicholas Cage’s character in Leaving Las Vegas, for example. An event is predictable if I can see the writer maneuvering the characters into position without the proper sense of agency from the characters. A predictable story is boring because the force driving events is external to the story, so there’s no chance that anything within the story can alter it. A story with an inevitable event - and the Titanic hitting the iceberg is the ultimate example of one - still has dramatic tension because the force driving the story is internal to the story, and therefore a course change (literal or metaphorical) is possible, right up until the last second.

Avatar is being defended with some of the same backhanded compliments which I remember hearing re Signs: “enjoy the experience, don’t nitpick the details.” Unfortunately, that approach doesn’t work for me, because I can’t not do that, so I’m unable to suspend disbelief if the story’s rivet-count is off. A writer who is willing to spend the extra time can fix plot holes and create believable characters, thus making the “wonder” in the story accessible to both rivet-counters and non-rivet-counters. Aliens-era Cameron was actually willing to do that.

Indifferent is the best word I can think of to describe the writing. The characters are so blah that I actually got bored during the fights between mechs, helicopters, Smelves (Smurf Elves), and dragons. The most damning evidence is the fact that I wasn’t offended by the insipid “white people, technology, and the military are evil” horseshit. There’s not much I enjoy more than being enraged by hippies, so my non-reaction to that means the movie was thoroughly inert and soulless.

**Please Note: I don’t begrudge anyone else their enjoyment of Avatar (seriously, if you spent money on it, you deserve to get what you paid for).

This analysis is interesting. Shorter than Red Letter Media’s Star Wars reviews (only 2 parts), and I think they only cut away from the analysis once or twice, but it was worth it for the answering machine message from the Department of Cultural Guilt.


She gets hired to play marines and cyborgs, despite a lack of Heroic presence?


Ugh. I guess he wouldn’t be an annoying Bond, just boring.


Each has good looks of that particular bland quality that allows viewers to imagine that they are watching someone else, to project another image on to the face. Jameson becomes the girl you had a crush on way back when; Worthington becomes you.


Yes, this, definitely. HTTYD’s first flight scene is more awe-inspiring than anything in Avatar, primarily because it concerns characters you actually care about.


I thought we’d long since established that Pandora was the star of Avatar, and that the characters were the scenery.

A curious inversion that I doubt worked as well as Cameron had hoped.

Oh who am I kidding, he probably thinks it turned out awesome.


Eh… this is a weird position to have…

Is the grand canyon going to be more stunning and visually inspiring to me if I am there with someone I care about, or if I go with a tour group? It is the same either way.

I loved HTTYD but Avatar was definitely more visually spectacular. Though, I did prefer the dragon character designs to the scary flying bird things in avatar.


What, you’ve never had someone else’s enthusiasm infect you? Or have some grouchy bastard ruin the mood? Who you’re with is going to affect you at some level, even is the scenery is the same.

Likewise, if you’re engaged with the characters in a movie, the way they feel in a particular scene is going to affect how the scene plays for the audience. Doesn’t seem weird at all.