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December 19, 2009


Chris Miksanek - The Med City Movie Guy -- 'Avatar'

In James Cameron’s new film, Avatar, the Titanic director gives us an epic tale that took fifteen years and $500 million dollars to bring to the big screen -- and we get all of that for under ten bucks!

(See also: Let's Get Digital, Digital)

     The year is 2154 and humans have colonized the planet of Pandora to mine their rich deposits of the not-so-creatively-named mineral “Unobtainium,” which is key to mitigating Earth’s energy crisis. A team of scientists led by Dr. Grace Augustine (Sigourney Weaver) hope to relocate the indigenous people, the Na'vi, away from their sacred land using diplomacy developed through remotely-controlled hybrids of human and native DNA called “Avatars.” A complementing paramilitary force has the same objective but has less patience.
     Progress is muted until ex-Marine Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) is recruited to control one of the Avatars, then it is altogether threatened by his conflicting allegiance. His “Once a Marine, always a Marine” mantra initially obliges him to the local command’s Colonel Quaritch (Stephen Lang). But when the wheelchair-bound warrior finds liberation in his alternate self and a romantic interest in the Na'vi king’s daughter Neytiri (Zoe Saldaña, more or less), he rallies the Pandoran clans to defend what is rightfully theirs.
     Early reaction to Avatar was akin to John Travolta’s response to a sip from Uma Thurman’s milkshake in Pulp Fiction. Just as Travolta had to know “what a five-dollar shake tastes like” film buffs had to see what a half-billion dollar film looks like. Their verdict: wonderment. Cameron created a culture and developed the technology to masterfully tell this story. So what’s not to like?
     For one thing, the heroes are blue. That’s never really explained, but it’s probably not from waiting for a bus on South Broadway in January. The film’s length is also a chore. At two hours and forty minutes, it’s no small commitment to your attention span or your continence (the latter is more problematic because the film is so engaging that you literally can’t step away for even a moment). At times Avatar is overtly politically preachy with stereotypical hawkish dialog like, “Our security lies in preemptive attack, fight terror with terror.” If that’s obvious enough, there’s even a “Shock and Awe” campaign. 
     Thankfully, the story is easy to follow, unlike, for instance, Dune, or The Lord of the Rings films (for those who didn’t read the books, anyway). Essentially, it’s a retelling of Dances With Wolves, but with a happier ending.
     Avatar is a must-see and only a “skxawng” would think otherwise.

3 Honks
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for intense epic battle sequences and warfare, sensuality, language and some smoking.

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This movie was amazing! it was worth the money to go see. The movie is about 3 hours.The plot is somewhat expected as it has a 'feel good' ending; the new camera technology is also amazing.

Avatar what can I say but " Awesome ". I got the thrill I was looking for when I saw the movie.

Love the movie and the relationship that the aliens have with each other.

I like the story of the movie. The next Box Office Hit!

The movie is totally awesome and I read almost all the reviews about it.

Today's movies are really something maybe because of the improved graphical display in today's films that make it look good and breath taking in theaters.

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