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  • Quicksilver6

    I really, intensely hated this movie. I can’t even begin to describe how petulant and immature the mindset towards humanity this film has. It quite literally can be described as if it were a film made by teenage furries on Deviantart. The misanthropy and oversimplification of not only human history, but also military and political history, cultural interaction, and people in general felt like the biggest “Fuck you” I’ve ever gotten from rich white self-loathing Canadian who doesn’t like himself or humanity and is taking it out on the world in the most puerile fashion possible. 

    I really like how all the scientists were relegated to cardboard cut-out status in favor of the dumbest man in the world going on to become awesome by pure chance. Who needs things like analytical thinking and scientific method to determine the best course of action when a seed can resolve all the problems? Not that it really matters as they NEVER DO ANYTHING THE WHOLE MOVIE. What on earth did Max accomplish? Or Norm? They might as well have been transparent for all the good they did. I’m really impressed, guest who told me I wasn’t looking deep enough into the characters. All the sympathetic humans fail to accomplish anything or have any kind of a story arc besides the two women dying pointlessly and accomplishing nothing in the process. Norm’s anger at Jake disappears, accomplishing nothing. Max does nothing the whole movie. Trudy dies at the end, failing to accomplish anything. Grace also dies, accomplishing not much either. Great writing! I really felt like two cultures were really interacting and that humanity was given a fair shake. That totally isn’t going to inspire self-loathing and depression in people, or fuel stupid impossible fantasies about “I’m not human, I’M A SPECIAL SNOWFLAKE!”.

    I also really liked how the Na’vi were HUGE RACIST ASSHOLES and wouldn’t even talk to humans unless they assumed an entirely new form, and how literally everything the humans did was wrong to them. Talking? Out of the question. Walking in the forest and getting attacked? Your human background and culture caused it, you foolish human. Exchange cultural background and information? Nonsense. Our way is the superior way and is catered to by a literal goddess. Working at improving yourself or your way of life is for chumps. Intercultural relationship going on? You don’t need things like a careful respect and balance of two cultures – it needs you to abandon everything you’ve ever known and assimilate into a new culture that has no respect for your past, history or place of origin! Because that’s worked out so well in human history. The RDA were no heroes, but jesus at least they TRIED to talk something out.

    The only interesting character with ANY kind of internal moral conflict was the administrator Selfridge, and he was swinging wildly between “Yes I will give you a chance to resolve this peacefully” and “I AM A CARDBOARD CUTOUT OF A RACIST CEO FROM THE 1980’S BECAUSE NOTHING HAS CHANGED IN HUNDREDS OF YEARS DESPITE HUGE OVERHAULS IN RECENT HUMAN HISTORY”. 

    Fuck this movie. I don’t deny terrible things have happened and still happen to all kinds of people, or that our countries have their hands clean, but simplifying the past to the point where one side is all good and the other all bad, not to mention ensuring all the bad guys were poorly characterized white americans with nothing to describe them except mindless, poorly explained hatred, is taking the easy way out of a potentially interesting conflict and story.

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  • http://twitter.com/Smsff7 Steven

    Pizza roll FTW :P Well they are better then this movie at least :)

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  • jsmith0552

    Yeah, but the protagonist is the a white guy too, so what point are you trying to make? I guess a lot of people would have really hated it if Cameron had made the protagonist any other race but white. And of course if the Na’vi weren’t blue skinned cat aliens but some identifiable culture, no one would have felt the need to see it at all. [We love our reality wrapped in fantasy] I honestly don’t know from what political or social realm Cameron was coming from when he made this. I know I didn’t care for it, but obviously a lot of people sure did. I’m seeing it attacked by one side as anti-American, anti-military, anti-capitalism, with a white guilt complex, yet I also see it attacked for the white savior plot (which really stands out btw). Some kind of way these two viewpoints don’t really seem to jibe. It’s really a tired plot that mainstream America seems to like so I don’t get the first group at all, except that recent wars in Iraq have made people over-sensitive to criticism of U.S. involvement in foreign countries that seem to be spurred on by economic reasons, or any films that cause people to make that connection. At another point in history I don’t believe a lot of people would have necessarily made that connection at all.

  • guest

    What’s not to get? The “America/military/humans/capitalism is EVIL” stuff is what Cameron intended, because he’s simple minded and so is his target audience.
    The hypocrisy of said message coming from a rich, white, human guy who makes millions from capitalism and technology was NOT intended, because Cameron isn’t that self-aware.
    The “white savior” part was completely unintended on Cameron’s part, and just emerged because Cameron isn’t really “progressive” and neither are most progressives. There’s a reason why studies keep showing that political “liberals” give far less to charity than “conservatives”.

  • Otend

    Perhaps the definition of hype without backing. This movie, despite the supposed scope and grandiose visuals, lacks substance. It’s like a critically-accepted Michael Bay film.

  • anon

    that is because liberals pay full taxes and conservatives pay none but they do donate to charities, I mean, the mormon church to advocate the death of the gays…

  • mrrowland

    Anyone who has seen this movie and has reached a mental age beyond finding the likes of Adam Sandler funny (I was around 16 when I figured this out), knows how lightweight this film is.

    People defending it are always the ones who haven’t developed any taste yet. You can’t blame them for that really, most people don’t care enough to make the concerted effort.

    Don’t fret petals, if you rewatch this film in 20 years time (or not bother – which I wouldn’t blame you for) you’ll find it has literally no charm/intrigue/intelligence/vaguely realistic social commentary/emotional depth/involvement… etc etc. All the things which you obviously currently don’t give a fuck about, one day you will realise are all-important. But it’ll have action. It’ll always have ACTION!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/richardhalo Alexandru Popa

    One thing about Avatar : A Sci-Fi hyper 3D Pocahontas with great special FX. Just replace names from Pocahontas with the ones from Avatar (add some space ships and big guns) and you get the same plot.That’s all.

  • zero_miles_per_hour

    “White guilt” and “white savior” go hand in hand actually. Basically, the idea is “Don’t be afraid, I’m sorry for what white people did to you but I’m not like them, I’m here to help.”

  • zero_miles_per_hour

    Conservatives don’t pay taxes? That’s impossible, that’s like half the people (or they’d never win elections), that’s like Greece before the collapse.

  • zero_miles_per_hour

    I didn’t hate that colonel, actually I sympathized with him quite a bit. He was so excited that an ex-Marine was joining the Avatar team, because deep down he suspected that the scientists were such tools that they couldn’t even be trusted just to explain to the Navi what we needed, and then try to work out a peaceful way for us to get it. So when the colonel discovered their treachery and saw that the ex-Marine was the one who corrupted them, that he essentially turned double agent for the Navi because he was having too much fun pretending to be one of them, that was pretty tragic. If anything the colonel was far too forgiving of those traitors, which was essentially the cause of his downfall. And when it was revealed that the Navi didn’t want the tree to be disturbed because it’s where they kept all their ancestors in a perpetual state of living death, I strongly sympathized with the colonel’s desire to tear that hellish tree down and rescue the damned deathless souls trapped inside it.

  • john

    I like Avatar but get the criticism. It’s just a great movie to see in 3D unlike most of the shit that has come out since in 3D.

  • Damon

    I wasn’t a huge fan of Avatar, but reading you get so worked up and angry over a movie is actually making me like it all the more. It sounds like you allowed yourself to get swept up in the hype and then you paid the price with your attitude when the film didn’t meet your lofty expectations. Sucks to be you.

  • Dyne

    And idiots like this are allowed to vote. So your grand logic today is that only liberals pay taxes, and conservatives are somehow exempt from paying taxes based on their political ideology. Yes, there’s a vast conspiracy perpetrated by the US government to keep right minded individuals from paying their taxes. Because that makes any sense. Your second lesson is that there exists another vast conspiracy from the Mormon church to eradicate homosexuals, because there is actually evidence to support such a ludicrous accusation.. but of course there isn’t, but we don’t have to use facts, right? Do humanity a favor and just die. Mankind ill needs a brain such as yours.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/John-Halen/100003840392805 John Halen

    This review sucks. All thru your star wars reviews you complain about the over complication of the plot. Now you’ve got what you want and your not happy. People likes the characters and sympathised with them. I don’t know about the rest of you, but I would fuck the shit out of a Navi.

  • http://twitter.com/psycho_pigeon bobby kirsch

    lol avatar is poop face

  • dieeerp

    after reading that rant. I like the movie even more.

  • Vague

    “…Or Taco Bell.”

  • Panther

    AHHH!! PITT! :DDDDD

  • Sb

    You’re very strange.

  • Vimes

    This movie was not dances with aliens it was furngully, and it’s storyline sucked was almost as if they spent all the money making the sets and then thought shit we need a story i know my kid just saw this film bout a magic tree and some fairys….

  • George Lucas

    so manny idiots are posting comments!

  • iZoe

    I never saw this film; had no interest in it. Guess it’s because Titanic is probably one of worst movies ever made. All the more hated because it won the Oscar. I lost respect for the Oscars that year too. Go back to the Alien and Terminator franchises James!

  • Daggoth

    By the end of the movie I wanted the humans to win, and I wanted to see those Na’vi fucks burn in nuclear hellfire…. just my two cents

  • http://twitter.com/Patrick_PHA13 Patrick Allen

    It’s the Empire on Endor’s forest moon all over again. Fucking fucking little fucking bear fucking Ewok fuck fuckers. Fuck!

    I hate the Ewoks, Chuck. I hate ‘em.

  • http://twitter.com/Patrick_PHA13 Patrick Allen

    I thought the Colonel was awesome. I was rooting for him.

  • http://twitter.com/Patrick_PHA13 Patrick Allen

    The protagonist is a white guy who abandons his species because he’s more enlightened than the rest.

    He’s Tom Cruise from The Last Samurai or Kevin Costner from Dances with Wolves.

    The bad guys are two-dimensional military and business types, and the two big baddies are pasty white types. Grunts are blue-collar whites, blacks, and hispanics, sure, but they also get killed like crazy, which fits into the common portrayal of soldiers since the Vietnam Era, ie. a bunch of colored people dying needlessly in the service of the white military-industrial complex. Same old, same old.

    I don’t think the movie’s a piece of propaganda. It’s just so stupid that it swallows a bunch of politically-motivated cinematic cliches whole so it can ignore any plot complexity and get on with the CGI.

  • some guy

    navi means profet

  • advancedcaveman

    I don’t believe for one second that anyone was actually making this movie for 15 years. The script was probably slapped together on weekend after Cameron found out that people have a bizarre hard-on for motion capture and he realized that he could make a metric shit ton of money if he made everything dumb enough and covered every possible base in the marketing.

  • http://twitter.com/Shahrukahn Piss Standing Up

    Wat is the song playing at the end? Someone, anyone, please?

  • proghead777

    They’re not military, they’re mercenaries. They’re people who provide “security” (shoot people… or giant blue cat people, in this case) for money. You know, like Blackwater. This is stated very clearly in the first few minutes of the movie. I only point it out because it’s a very common criticism of this movie that it makes villains out of heroes. That’s not correct. It makes villains out of people who are willing to commit mass murder for profit. People do that sort of thing, you know. And I don’t think Avatar is as much about white guilt for the genocide of Native Americans as it is suggesting that we’re being a little naive if we think that people would never do such things again. If a corporation severely lacking in the ethics department had the means, the motive and, most importantly, the ability to act with impunity because no one’s around to even know what they’re doing, let alone stop them, they’d do it in a New York minute.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Webb/1405341955 Chris Webb

    this movie reminds me of what mike compared paranormal activity to, a theme park ride. as a story it’s a pile of shit, but as a theme park ride it’s not to bad

  • deerstop

    I agree with your critisizm. Plot was boring and predictable, characters were plain and uninteresting. I loved the film still. The visuals!

  • http://twitter.com/aliennetwork RP Clarke

    I am posting in your webzone!

  • EdG4MES

    dude the garbage pail kids comparison made me choke on my sandwich. thats some fucking funny shit.

  • Dan

    Someone’s a bit of a troll, eh?

  • Dan

    “White guilt” is kind of stupid in the first place, since we were kinda enslaving each other in the start of it all. Race only became a convenient excuse, when in reality, it would have most likely happened despite it. It wasn’t truly…”personal” at the root of it all. It’s time to get over it. Until we move on, it guilt only says we’re still that backwards that it’ll happen again. Leave it to the history classes, not hack film makers.

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.westgate.100 Daniel Westgate

    Unlike Micheal Bay there are characters that have something to them that is identifiable and somewhat relate-able, even if on the most shallow, primitive, dumbass level. On the other hand, it’s unoriginal. e.” So… fuck it.
    “No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no…. no, no…”

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.westgate.100 Daniel Westgate

    That’s not all he did. He also made it shittier, too.

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.westgate.100 Daniel Westgate

    It’s more spiritual than that. They’re not “trapped” in it but a part of it. Everything is connected, remember? If they were simply trapped in it, Grace could have just came right back had her soul some direction.

    On the other hand if everything is connected why do they need a tree in the first place? That was the first thing to grow and everything came from it or something? Now we’re sounding a little too mythological and supernatural here.

    Now, the whole time I was wondering, “why doesn’t Jake just tell them that they only want the Unobtanium and not the tree itself? would it be so hard to go in their and get the fuel and leave? And if it would harm the tree, just take a little at a time.”

    But then the Colonel is waaay too cartoony to compromise. “Fuck damn savages can’t tell me how to run my operation! Get out or die!” Yeah, so I take it, and hope you only sympathies with the colonel because all the other characters are even more stupid.

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.westgate.100 Daniel Westgate

    The fact that they physically tap into the world via hair is a perfect example of how they aren’t truly spiritual, but this is a kids movie, right?

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.westgate.100 Daniel Westgate

    I think it’s less about the audience being stupid and more about the fact that a good story would be distracting from him outdoing Lucas.

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.westgate.100 Daniel Westgate

    Painting it was freakin stupid. The odds of the Navi destroying that thing were small. If it weren’t painted she could retreat and blend in and keep making attacks, or at least have the chance too. It was just a way to force emotion so a script doesn’t have to. Because words that mean something are distracting.

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.westgate.100 Daniel Westgate

    Well it’s kinda hard to be fat when you live on a forest and only eat what you need to. They all looked ugly to me. Maybe I just hate blue people.

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.westgate.100 Daniel Westgate

    That’d make it even longer and cost more, no?

  • anonymous

    it’s best to describe this movie very simply as “the last samurai” given the george lucas treatment, take someone’s story of an invader that doesn’t understand the local culture, get’s his ass kicked, and then goes native, learns the local ways and then fights to preserve that way.

  • http://www.facebook.com/zck2020 Zane Knight

    They were EX-military MERCENARIES. Yeah.

  • Maddy

    Most of the scenes in Avatar were taken from Fern Gully. Actually, I’d have to say the whole plot was. Then it has a bunch of stuff from dances with wolves? This movie is comletely unoriginal. The only part that actually made this movie worth watching was the theme of pandora, the animation, and the action.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jason.hockridge.50 Jason Hockridge

    I’m so glad I never have and never will see this film. If only I could have done the same with Prometheus :( Oh and to all the people who like the film more because other people hate it. What? Base your opinion on your tastes and well respect you. Don’t base it on just taking sides, surely that is childish and ultimately pointless?

  • famguy210

    “A guy named William Shatner once said” lol that made my day

  • Daniel Burke

    Get a life, troll.

  • Herrerasaurus

    One is immortal so long as one has not a life.

  • Gearhm

    I don’t get why people think this movie ripped off Dances with Wolves! I always thought it ripped off Ferngully!

  • Eric

    He deconstructs the way in which the movie manipulates our emotions in order to disparage it. Isn’t that what all good movies are supposed to do? Manipulate your emotions? I enjoyed this movie, sure it might have preferred if the aliens were actually alien, and the humans had been a little more nuanced, but then we wouldn’t have been able to have a love story (it’d be a hard sell to the audience that Jake falls in love with one of the aliens from district 9), had it been more nuanced, the movie would have taken a lot longer. What’s wrong with it being a “ride”? What’s wrong with one movie being good guys vs. bad guys? And what’s wrong with humans (or the white man, or an allegory for such) being the bad guys? I love it when people rip on the “originality” of a story. I have news for you: NO STORY IS ORIGINAL. Its pretty much impossible these days to come up with a story that isn’t a “rippoff” of some other story. I heard Shakespeare’s hamlet was a rippoff of some previous story. Wait, what other movie features a human joining some aliens to fight his fellow humans? Set on a crazy, psychedelic alien world? Pshh! So unoriginal, I’ve seen a million movies like that..:P Jeezus, get a grip people. Some people like it, some people don’t, what’s the big deal? People get so self-righteous about hating this movie. Unlike a lot of people here, I didn’t see this as an allegory for stuff that happened a long time ago, I thought the themes were pretty current. At one point Jake says: “When they’ve got something you want, you make them your enemy”. That kind of stuff is still happening today! John Perkins drew a parallel to Ecuador from this movie on his blog. http://www.johnperkins.org/avatar-in-the-amazon/, I’m sure you can

    The aliens were “perfect”? “peaceful”? The first thing I thought when I saw their bows and arrows, and how good they were at fighting was: “These guys must fight each other from time to time”. Pacifist cultures aren’t this good at fighting.

  • Eric

    Didn’t the Navi destroy a WHOLE BUNCH of those things? You didn’t see the movie, did you?

  • Eric

    Well, modern mining isn’t always drilling, tunnels, often times you dig big quarries. Still though, they have faster than light ships, but they can’t find another deposit of this mineral that isn’t under the indigenous people’s home? Nah, better to sour relations with the first sapient species we’ve ever met, its too expensive to keep looking.

  • Eric

    I feel exactly the same way about this film. I went into this to see a visual 3D sci-fi masterpiece (the only film I’ve ever seen do 3D well I might add), and I got more than what I bargained for: Relevant themes, even if people construe it as simply colonizers vs. natives (not a wrong way of looking at it, but not the only way), a “dead issue”, . Anyone who thinks that there isn’t anything relevant in this movie probably doesn’t know much about the crimes perpetrated by Coca Cola, United Fruit ( now Dole), mining companies, etc.. Its like the commenters on this board think that all the bad things are over, exploitation and environmental destruction is a thing of the past, so how dare James Cameron drudge up such awful historical baggage with this movie! Also, don’t ever criticize capitalism or the military, or the military industrial complex, you’re not allowed!

  • Eric

    I saw Ferngully about a dozen times when I was young; the plot was nothing like Ferngully.

  • Starone

    So you’re basically saying the military is immune from criticism? Our military has done great things yes, but that doesn’t change the fact that they’ve also done some pretty bad things too. To imply that the military is immune from ANY criticism PERIOD is a simple and even dangerous mindset to have.

  • Andrea Darling

    I feel like there wasn’t a lot to this review. Plinkett goes into depth as to why people liked this movie, but he doesn’t say a lot about why people shouldn’t have. Sure he mentions a couple of times how he thinks the plot and characters are one dimensional, but that’s about it.

  • GenreHatingAnyone?

    Moral of Avatar: Don’t go and see an Action Adventure movie that is meant to ENTERTAIN audiences and expect some epiphany scale story, enlightening characters, discussions on philosophical issues of species dominance, or paradigm shifting emotional attachments.
    Expect explosions, acid trip visuals, and explosions.

  • DevilsAdvocate

    So, the Civil War beginning because of different perspectives on enslaving coloured folk doesn’t envoke misanthropy or seem oversimplified to you?

  • http://www.facebook.com/nick.signedup.3 Nick Signedup

    yes buddy,, im sure they will release a snuff version of avatar soon for ya. hang in there.

  • http://www.facebook.com/nick.signedup.3 Nick Signedup

    The movie is fucking awesome! your all a bunch of overgrown fat fucks who get jealous of success in movies! grow a pair! get out of the basement and actually do something with your lives.!! avatar is the best movie in the world with the record of 2.7 BILLION $$. like it or not he doesn’t give a fuck about what you retards think!! oh and avatar 2 and 3 are coming in the future ;) looking forward to it BAHAH..

  • http://www.facebook.com/nick.signedup.3 Nick Signedup

    and your mother had better visuals and special effects in bed.

  • http://www.facebook.com/nick.signedup.3 Nick Signedup

    your intelligence is an insult to the fucking world.

  • Kinsey

    Actually, there was a MUCH deeper and longer script for Avatar that would’ve run for six hours, called Project 600 or some such. I can’t remember where, but there’s a newspaper article out there that summarised it. Needless to say, it got chopped down.

  • I don’t know who I am anymore!

    The fact that this review is the one that’s probably gotten the most shit from commenters is a sign that James Cameron did his job. You wouldn’t see this much crying in response to the Cop Dog review, now would you?

  • http://www.facebook.com/ben.lentaigne Ben Lentaigne
  • Guest

    I feel I should just mention that they weren’t exactly great at fighting. Look how the angry boyfriend gets his ass handed to him when he tries to fight Jake. They’re hunters, which is why they’re good at shooting their bows and arrows.

  • Eric

    Jake had both Marine and Navi training, plus, who’s to say that if they fought again, it wouldn’t happen differently? Also, I’m not sure what the definition is of “getting your ass handed to you” in movies. He got a few shots at that other Navi, but in movies, people tend to be able to take a lot more punishment than they could in real life, without the fight being over. You get fights where one guy gets punched, kicked in the stomach, thrown around, then gets back up and does the same to the other guy, the fight going back and forth a lot. About the war thing, I guess that really comes down to how you interpret it; movies are open to a lot of interpretation, where they don’t explicitly state certain things. Maybe the Navi really never had any wars like you said, or maybe they did. I think that they did, because: a) Aboriginals on Earth did. and b) they seemed to catch on really quick how to conduct a war, and were planning on doing it with or without Jake’s help.

  • Baker

    Because Dances with Wolves is about a soldier who gets seperated from his group in unfamiliar territory, is soon enough taken in by the Native tribes, learnes more about their culture, way of life, ect., and eventually becomes one of them. Oh, and the soldiers attack the Native camp too….

  • GoodGuyGrayson

    For me, Avatar was always…boring. The atmosphere and setting were nothing spectacular. The characters were either boring or annoying (save the evil general, who goes down as one of the few villains I legitimately rooted for). Whats really sad is one of the defenses to my opinions of the film was “Yeah but do you know how much money this movie has made?”

  • Deus Gladiorum

    Lol you felt like you were watching some Disney animated film? Maybe it’s because you were. Ever see the disney movie Atlantis? I swear to God it is literally the EXACT same story. Don’t know if you’ve mentioned that in your review yet, I’m only a couple minutes in.

  • RLM

    I think you mean the Fern Gully. In Atlantis, the main character doesn’t BECOME an Atlantean. In Fern Gully, the guy becomes a fairy, so to speak, and has to learn their ways before his old construction crew cuts down their fairy tree. That is the exact same story. Not Atlantis, not Dances with Wolves; Fern Gully is the only one where there is a special tree that gets cut down by the people of the guy who gets turned into a fiary to learn to appreciate the forest.

  • Fuck a duck

    Thank you for punishing me for using ad blocking software, finally the lesson I needed to learn.

  • Jack

    This movie really should have had this as a distant finale.

  • Mike Jakermen

    That is always what i called it. “Dance with Wolves in Space”.

  • AlcaldeEste

    Avatar (2009) = Pocahontas (1995) = Fern Gully (1992) = Dances With Wolves the film (1990) = Dances With Wolves the book (1988) and it’s probably older than that. Let’s just say that story has been told before.

  • Sam

    I love this review, gave me a chuckle, but I wish dear Plinkett would make up his mind. He likes sci-fi that uses futuristic settings to make commentary on the modern condition…. but doesn’t like that Avatar had a military that aped the modern US military?

    Or was it simply too obvious?

  • Roman Monaghan

    The irony in this comment that criticizes over analysis and getting worked up over a movie is that it was made on Red Letter Media dot com.

    Like, dude, the guy who made over analyzing and getting worked up over movies popular is the website you are making fun of this dude on. The level of stupidity you’re exhibiting here is nothing short of hilarious.

  • L0lwut

    Would have been the greatest movie ending ever.

  • Baron Teapot

    There’s nothing wrong with having clear villains, but it’s a shame that Cameron abandoned subtlety in favor of making it incredibly obvious to anyone watching who we were supposed to root for. A good story gets you invested in the characters without needing to portray everything as black-and-white.

    I’m not saying it’s a bad story, it’s just a little too simple for my tastes. There’s no puzzle to it; the audience doesn’t feel conflicted over the greedy Unobtanium guy, nobody in the theater thought that the battle-scarred veteran general was a good person, and it’s all so safe and obvious.

    We’re not retards who need a woman patiently cooing to us who we should and should not root for; I can pick up a crayon without stabbing myself in the eye with it… most times.

    Plinkett called Cameron a “master of his craft”, in that he makes an incredibly “effective” movie that uses all sorts of technology, themes and symbolism to tell us something we could’ve easily worked out ourselves.

    “Humans bad, Na’vi good.” Got it.

    The story was second to showing off the technology involved, and that’s fine, but please don’t suggest that ‘Avatar’ is anything more than a gimmicky movie, or anything less than the pinnacle of special-effects (when it came out, at least).

  • fuckstick

    The problem is this. The oversimplification of characters in a drama which is a morality play is intellectually dishonest. It supposes that some people are just evil or just good or only evil or only good. If Avatar is supposed to be analogous to the war in Iraq then it does a disservice to the truths of the situation because while the whole war is unfortunate it is not a clear black and white situation. I doubt any of the commanders involved are so overtly evil, each of them was a peace time career officer who was thrust into running a poorly conceived military campaign by their civilian executives.

    A movie like Apocalypse Now, does a great job of showing how war dehumanizes and desensitizes its participants to the point that men willingly and even happily commit atrocities (see the flight of the Valkyrie/Helicopter scene). It shows normal people, who begin with good intention (service to america defending the south Vietnamese) descending into madness, which all builds up to Col. Kurtz’s horror monologue at the films finale.

    I imagine the real life General Custer, probably started out good, he was some mother’s baby, baptized into a faith which teaches us to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. But, after years of prosecuting the Indian Wars he was driven to hatred and contempt of the American Indians, at some point he learned to love glory and advancement, and he and his men paid for it with their lives and perhaps their souls.

    The climax of Avatar ends with a Little Big Horn situation, but it teaches us nothing about being human and the nature of hatred and glory. It merely pulls at the common man’s heart strings, and more importantly his wallet. In essence Cameron fails to learn the lessen he purports to teach: that the love of money leads men to do horrible things. In this case it’s a shallow narrative propped up with 3D bobbles. The Horror, the Horror!

  • Alex Lee

    Except Michael Bay doesn’t know how to develop or create characters. Cameron has simple characters, but at least they are characters.

  • Mitch Strenke

    I actually would compare this to the recent cracked sketch, “If characters knew they were in a nineties kids movie” It shows a bunch of kids getting a prep talk from the coach before a bunch of ragtag misfits pile of the bus to oppose them, he knows whats coming and tries to explain to the kids why their years of practice and active attempts to be good at baseball are their undoing because an audience is watching and wants the other team to win just because of convenient drama. I actually was sympathetic to the general at the end, he was just doing his job. Sure the navi might not have deserved annihilation (as far as we know) but they were portrayed as totally innocent even though their actions suggested that the humans made numerous attempts to negotiate that the navi would have no part of. The general guy could be getting the unobtainum to fuel space travel thus ensuring humanity wouldn’t go extinct when sol explodes eventually, for all we know unobtainable is some vital mineral that could do very important things and they aliens are just being selfish assholes who refuse to share because they got a Christmas tree to live in and what not. but because theirs an audience watching they just get to win because, even though the humans totally kick their ass so que alien dinosaur appocalypse

  • Mace Window

    That mash-up with the Cabbage Patch kids was the most horrifying thing I’ve ever seen.

  • Stephen Moyer

    Actually it was the Garbage Pail Kids.

  • Mace Window

    Both are hideous anyway.

  • Godsbedamned

    Obviously you didn’t actually watch the video…
    Fucking dumbass.

  • Operation Knightfall

    It wouldn’t matter if they were called a Pep Squad. With all those future guns and the fact they act like a sci-fi military, they’re a sci-fi military regardless of what they call themselves.

  • Operation Guestfall

    You don’t seem to realize how proud you are to have been played with like a bitch…

  • Daniel Burke

    You are a class A idiot. You call the film crap, and then say that because it looked good, you still loved it. What a retard.

  • Bjorn13

    Oh common, i love Quaritch, that guy is a hearo of a human race! This is still awesome and funny thought.¨

  • jedidethfreak

    Of course JC “did his job.” His job is to make the studio a shit-ton of money. How he did it, however, is completely disingenuous.

  • Patrick

    Since when did he say that he expected an action adventure movie to be enlightening or deep? Avatar attempts social commentary, but fails miserably: that’s what makes it bad. Also, lowering your expectations to generic and boring doesn’t mean a movie is suddenly better for now meeting the lowered expectations.

  • akira

    If the unobtainum meant that much to the humans then they should have got it from their own planet. If they were unable to then they should have asked the Navi nicely for some of their unobtainium. If the Navi refuse (which is their right) and the humans then take it by force, the humans are the bad guys of the situation. Simple. I really don’t see the confusion here, if someone takes something valuable by force and against the owners will, then it’s called a ROBBERY! It really is that black and white. I find it very hard to root for violent home invaders over their victims. But hay, that’s just me I guess!

  • AFox

    If only they had some way to negotiate with the savage aliens that kill humans on sight. Oh, wasn’t that what Jake Sully was there for? Also, earth is dying without the unobtainable, so I don’t think then evil for bombing the crap out of the selfish aliens. Navi would rather a whole species die before they move some where else… or just stop attacking the miners that weren’t even mining under their tree. It’s also not robbery unless Pandora is under human law. It would be more so raiding.

    What is it with people suddenly not caring about billions of human live when it involves moving some natives? The same thing happened in Star Trek: Insurrection.

  • Otto Torrens

    The Navi didn’t care about or have any interest in the unobtanium….

  • Baron Teapot

    Mitch Strenke and Otto Torrens, would you steal verruca cream from a man with no feet? Whether they were using the “unobtanium” is irrelevant. If the humans in charge aren’t capable of reaching a diplomatic conclusion, that’s their fault.

    Plus, doesn’t it allow them to talk to their ancestors? They use the stuff at the end to allow Jake Sully to become an Avatar-Man.

    If oil is discovered in a country with no interest in oil, should we just invade and steal the oil, ’cause we need it to get to work and bikes require effort? lol :-)

  • AFox

    I’ld like to see you prove that. I could easier prove that the Na’vi kill humans just to kill humans. Also it’s not the sole responsibility of the stronger force to find diplomatic solutions. in fact it’s the otherway around.

    The na’vi didn’t even try to negotiate. They instead attacked everything human.

    NO! The Na’vi do not use the unobtanium once in the film for anything. In fact, the Na’vi could be completely unaware that the unobtainium exist, since Jake Sully never told the Na’vi why the humans were on Pandora. Instead he made it sound like the humans are there to perform some kind of ethnic cleansing.

    No we shouldn’t invade, we should send in ambassadors to negotiate for it. We should only send in force if they attack civians (which they did), or if they are willing to squat on the reasource out of spite (which they also are willing to do in the movie).

    This movie’s entire premise becomes stupid when you realize that it only works if Sully never tells them why the humans are there, otherwise the Na’vi look like selfish asshole. Heck the whole part about the unobtainium being used to save humanity and clean up earth was removed because it made the humans to sympathetic.

  • fuckstick

    Property is theft – Peter Kropotkin. So who is the villain now? See what you did there, you took the Lockean concept of property and inserted it into an alien society as if it was a native concept to them. And that don’t make no sense. I said don’t waste my time!

  • Jason

    I couldn’t get through the first ten minutes of this schlock. The characters were all one-dimensional clichés, existing only to serve as obvious, ham-fisted attempts to get an emotional reaction from me. “Oh, the corporate guy is so greedy and heartless, I hate him!”. “Oh, the military guy is a warmongering sadist, I hate that guy!”. “Oh, the crippled guy can’t walk, and people mock him, I feel so sorry for him and hope he wins in the end”. “Oh, the scientist lady is clear thinking and rational, but no one listens to her, if women ruled the world there would be no wars. It’s so frustrating, fuck men!” On, and on, and on, ad nauseam. The politically correct pandering was overbearing and insulting.
    For me, this movie serves as the ultimate personality test: if you liked it, you are not someone I want in my life.

  • Uncle Sporkums

    Agreed!

  • Veteran of the Psychic Wars

    I was amused by the hypocrisy of a computer generated sci-fi movie made using the most advanced technologies by a multi-millionaire with the purpose of advancing Cameron’s agenda of selling expensive projection technology with in-built obsolescence and starting a profitable franchise spouting a vacant anti-technology and anti-corporate message.

    That’s about the only entertainment I got out of this movie, though.

  • Keith Thomas

    Couldn’t agree more!

    I suppose if your an Obama-maniac from Berkley, then this is deep and meaningful. Otherwise its was depressing trash, more cynical than even the Phantom Menace.

    I don’t object to political movies, Christ I’ve even sat through a Sean Penn movie, but gushing, over-simplistic crap like this is even more disturbing than Triumph of Will, and an insult to those who really do serve in the military.

  • Keith Thomas

    ‘military that aped the modern US military?’

    Errr……so you ‘know’ what the modern US military does? It certainly isn’t this piece of shit film.

  • Lat

    I was amused by that paragraph-long sentence. The only entertainment I got out of this movie was silently choking my chicken in the back of the theater to the thought of That Guy from Dodgeball.

  • Lat

    “Hey guys, I know you are unaware of this fact, but your planet is full of an element not found on Earth that would benefit our species greatly! Mind if we take some?” Movie over.

  • Captain Matticus, LP Inc.

    Everybody told me to watch this movie because it was so amazing. So I watched it at my cousin’s house. I was less than impressed and that’s when everybody told me that was because I didn’t get the full 3D/IMAX experience. I explained to them that it wasn’t the lack of 3D that didn’t impress me, but rather the lack of an original story or interesting characters.

    Then I was called “snobby.”

    Oh well.

  • YonLittleSwine

    Hang on…Unobtainium?

    That was a mineral mentioned in the 1957 Uncle Scrooge story “Land of the Pygmy Indians”, in which Scrooge goes out into the wilderness and encounters a tribe of two-foot tall Indians who are frightened by his ideas of mining and exploitation.

    Oh, Mr. Cameron… *facepalm*

  • Chatterbox

    I just have one problem with this review – the “military” outfit in this movie isn’t a military at all, but a private security company.

    They mention this early on in Sully’s (Sam Worthington) narration; that the privatized outfit is made up of “retired military dogs and mercs, fighting for the money” (paraphrasing).

    I can agree with Mr. Plinkett’s points about how the military portrayal is kind of insulting to the present day military, but there isn’t really a military in here – just hired guns and thugs, ex military – and there is plenty of precedent in real life for ex military taking part in questionable or unethical work after leaving service.

    Otherwise I can totally see the points here. I loved Avatar for what it was; it’s not the “best movie ever” or even in the last decade by a mile, but it was a good telling of a simple story with some great performances.

  • Jonah Falcon

    Miss the point?

  • Jonah Falcon
  • Chatterbox

    What exactly did I miss? I was just pointing out a small discrepancy, not dismissing the rest of the review.

  • YonLittleSwine

    Yes, I know it’s a common term. I was making the point that this old children’s comic book not only uses it -but- also features some not-so-small plot similarities…

  • scott autry

    Was pissed off – for all the reasons you pointed out in this review – by the time we got to the line, “And we will fight this terror with terror…” at which point I told my two co-worker friends, “That’s it. I’ve had enough” and walked out to wait for them in the lobby many minutes later…

    It touched on my lingering anger at my 3rd Grade teacher – who told us how rotten American society is and how the ancient Mayans were such peace-loving people at one with nature and surrounding peoples and about the lovely ball game they had that was a cross between soccer and basketball.

    When I read on my own years later that the players were often sacrificed to the gods – I became bitter…

  • Jory Brown

    This is Plinkett’s most brilliant analsis, in my opinion.

  • Shawn Smith

    “I guess a lot of people would have really hated it if Cameron had made the protagonist any other race but white.”

    Yeah, like all of Will Smith’s movies that just totally crash at the box office because white people can’t stand seeing someone else as the protagonist. Did you think this through at all, or just spit out leftist drivel like you’ve been trained?

  • Brent Minehan

    The avatar hate is probably the most irrational backlash against a movie i have ever seen. I despise the aurora around this film. It doesn’t deserve anything but mild criticism against SOME of its plot un-originality. To hate on a film because others loved it so much and you didn’t think it was a good as they said it is, well is absurd. I know why people have come to feel this way and it has nothing to do with how good the film is. Expectation. Go watch it again and ffs temper those expectations. There is a reason why most of the most well respected critics and directors praise this film… and you should to.

  • senorhuxtable

    Is this real life or is this one of those irony things the kids like

  • Ryan

    I refused to even watch it because I figured it would just be pandering, wishy washy shit based on the trailer.
    turns out I was right

  • Yezzir!

    Plinkett’s right about the movie being just about the technical achievement and the payoff. Any modern film where the orientation of the audience to an alien world that starts with “you’re not in Kansas anymore” ain’t about innovation in the story.

  • Catalina Andreea Oprea

    i love it when we get an anti-technology message in a movie that’s made 99.9% in a computer

  • sean

    the point is that it’s the military, it doesn’t matter who is paying them. It was just the standard Hollywood concept of soldiers as violent bullys or dumb jocks.

  • Duckler

    Is this on o’ them “talkie” pictures, then?

  • Lat

    I wonder how she felt about Apocalypto

  • Wizard Phoenix

    Best part of the movie that ain’t the visuals is The Colonel. I fucking love this character. He’s so evil and over the top, and the actor knows this. Stephen Leg or Lang or whatever has so much fun with this character. Cameron fucking knows this too. That’s why he got a mainly stage actor to play his villain.

  • jack2211

    This movie convinced me to give my condo back to the Indians (not the ones who I talk to on the phone when I’m trying to up my credit limit — the other ones).

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