[lighthearted spoilers to follow? maybe? i dunno, this nerdfest is outta my element]
Avatar was ok.
Very very pretty. And there's something communally bonding about a bunch of nerds sitting in an IMAX theatre at 10:30PM on a Thursday night during a massive snow storm in suburban Chicago all wearing bright yellow 3D glasses. Nerdlingers, unite!
But it was a little long. And trite. And familiar. But that's enough beating around the bush. Here's how I really felt:
- Hey, sci-fi movies, why do you always have to have a nerdlinger supporting character who always undermines the unknowledgable lead? We don't need you, avatar aficionado Norm Spellman (lovable dork Joel Moore), sassing your sci-fi jargon to outsider Jake Sully (the gorgeous and hairy-chested Sam Worthington). Jake's in the same position as us, the unwise audience. Lay off. Avaaaaatar!!! ::shakes fist::
- Hey, James Cameron, why don't you let anyone else write your scripts? Your dialogue is wonky. That's all. Avataaaaar!!! ::shakes fist::
- Hey, the future, why are you whitewashed? Besides the Latin Trudy Chacon (Michelle Rodriguez wading through her material as best she can), 2154 is a very white place to be. No black scientists or soldiers? Hmm.... Avataaaaar!!! ::shakes fist::
- Look, fellow audience members, another chase scene! Oh no! Will he escape all the perilous and scary monsters who inhabit Pandora? ::he does:: Phew!
- Hey, Grandmother Willow, it was great to see you in another film after your 1995 debut in Pocahontas. But aren't you worried your work is falling into a "preserve the land, listen to your ancestral spirits, paint with the colors of the wind" rut? Branch out, sister. ::rim shot:: Avataaaaar!!! ::shakes fist::
- Hey, Sigourney Weaver, remember when you played the same hard-ass character in James Cameron's 1979 prequel to Avatar & he called it Alien? I do. Avataaaaar!!! ::shakes fist::
- Look, fellow audience members, another scene where Jake is learning something or following someone. Oh no! Will he learn everything he needs to know in time for the big Na'vi bar mitzvah? ::he does:: Phew!
- Hey, greedy land-monger Parker Selfridge (the poorly cast Giovanni Ribisi...but remember how good he was in The Other Sister???), you sit and converse with Jake on a daily basis about with experiences with the Na'vi: how come you don't know what Jake's avatar looks like? THEY HAVE THE SAME EFFING FACE! Here's a thought: DON'T ATTACK A NA'VI WHO LOOKS LIKE YOUR INSIDE MAN! Avataaaaar!!! ::shakes fist::
- Hey, the Diznee Corporation, it was very nice of you to let James Cameron and his crew film the Hometree sequences at your Animal Kingdom theme park. Specifically the Tree of Life. Do the Na'vi get to Fast Pass the line at It's Tough to Be a Bug 'cause they're locals? Really, it's the same design. You can't pull a fast one one me, Avataaaaar!!! ::shakes fist::
- Hey, misleading "Avatar: The IMAX 3D Experience" title: YOU WEREN'T FILMED ON IMAX FILM! Why did I pay $15 dollars to watch a relatively regular-sized movie on an IMAX screen? There was sooooo much empty space on the screen wasted by the fact it was a digital release and not a real IMAX film. This one really steams my potatoes. ::shakes fist the hardest of all::
Bottom line -and you can take this any way you want- Avatar ain't no Titanic. If you're gonna see it, definitely see it in 3D, but don't bother with the "IMAX Experience." The only thing you'll "experience" is an unnecessarily lighter wallet. Ba zing!