December 23, 2009
The hype for Avatar has been immense.
Nothing can live up to that. And Avatar doesn't. It's long, clichéd and completely predictable, with design that reminds me of non-SF Disney films. No matter what people say, I can't stand the blue aliens and glowing plants. Yuck. Meanwhile the design of the military half of the film is just a copy of Aliens, from all those years ago.
Lots of people seem to be amazed at the 3D, personally I find it distracting. It doesn't help that I wear glasses, and putting 3D glasses over normal glasses is uncomfortable and results in the odd reflected glare, less than ideal. But then for each shot, half of it is out of focus, to gain the 3Dness. It takes my eyes an good hour or more to settle into it and relax, which is not fun. And although the CGI shots in Avatar had decent 3D, it wasn't any more spectacular than Monsters Vs. Aliens, with the non-CGI shots looking achingly annoying and jarringly different.
But the worldbuilding! gasped the crowd. Please. Yes it's a whole world, just like Star Wars was thirty years ago. There's plenty of films that have all encompassing worlds. Many of them even look cool.
And the story. Twelve years to write that? I don't think so. A day cut and pasting between Dances With Wolves and Pocohontas maybe.
The positives? The graphics were pretty good. In places. There were some explosions. But that's it really.