Avatar a bias review.

7:55 AM by River Bird Comics

A review... it has been a while since I actually sit down to write a movie review so apologies if I am a little rusty. First the "elephant" on the room, why bias? Well James Cameron stole my idea, wait I know what you are thinking I don't mean to say that him or one of his minions were spying in my window when I designed Nhulluz nor that he saw my character designs online and thought: wow if I put half a billion dollars into this it may pay off! What I mean is that he probably reached on that collective consciousness soup that we all share and fished it out with a rusty spoon. In any case if reports of him being working on this are true I probably stole it from him, the point is he did the movie first and I did the comic (The Caerulean Dream) before his movie was out so we are even right? So I will address what is similar and what is different in between so bare with me if you don't care.
Continues after the over sized army smurf...




The Review, spoilers wise if you haven't seen the movie go see it and then come read the review I am not going to hold back on juicy details I think there is enough out there so you can make a decision on to see or not to see on you own, when in doubt: "eyeball it".
This is a great movie, Cameron's first accomplishment is burring the mystical "Uncanny Valley" there is no such a thing in this film, every CGI character is full of life and personality if you just wake up from a comma and were no up to date on FX you will think they are real aliens. The 3D  is gorgeous, I felt with other movies that it was only a two dimensional separation between foreground and backgrounds there is very little of that in here, to the point that you forget you are watching a 3D movie and you are just seeing that world. Characters Design wise here is were most of the overlap with The Caeruleas is first, you guessed it thy are blue but, they are also: tall, slender, agile, they have big round eyes, hair looks kind of like dreadlocks (they are really not), flat noses, long fingers, ear shape, etc. Differences: my characters have 5 fingers with two thumbs on each hand, they don't have feline eyes they are more like goat eyes, their mouths are bigger with complex jaws, their hair is not really hair but this thick chunks that grow out of  their scalps, their body type varies a little more than the Na'vi, also all their joints are bendable in 360 degrees make them excellent climbers and jumpers in a way that is very different to humans. In other character designs notes I find it odd  that all the animals in this world are constructed in a very different way, with four front legs but the Na'vi are not, I think the main reason for this is practical as an avatar how can a human control four arms? Having said all this the designs are outstanding, they convey their personalities their faces are different enough from each other that you can recognize them (most of the time), you can see how a human could trade with out blinking.The flora and fauna are very interesting, you can see were the base animals came from but they are not oversize versions of them, I really like the land sea-horse, the flora is probably nicer looking and more diverse than the fauna but more familiar to us too. The flying creatures shape was very similar to the ones in Starship Troopers but different enough up close. The world itself is outstanding, great balance and landscapes, this is another similarity with The Caeruleans their world is a low gravity moon in a gas giant system. I was expecting a little more variety on the other tribes habitat but there was not much time to explore it.

Continues after the lovely arrow throwing lesson... 



Plot wise I found it the weakest point of the movie, I will skip the comparisons with Dances with the Wolves, The Last Samurai and District 9 but there is plenty. Even when trying to show a point of view different from their own I think american directors can not stop themselves from putting the all american boy in the middle, it is being self center when you have to be both the hero and the villain? or just narcissistic? A good way of putting the lack of originality on the story is to say that is a mix of Battlestar Galactica and Princes Mononoke. I think the biggest challenge when creating an Alien spices is how to handle it, do you base it on a long lost culture, do you just go east or you skip the creative process on based on you own? It's hard the risk you take when you base it on a lost or heavily genocided culture is to make a mockery of their belief system in this case being: so the Na'vi are similar to the native Americans but all their "crap" about being connected to their land is true. Please don't quote me on that with out a context. I guess the Na'vi are more spiritual than The Caeruleans but they share the reverence for balance and nature in The Caeruleans is based on practicalities of survival something we could learn from. The acting is the other bright start in this movie, it's what helps smash the uncanny valley and bring the story together, the way they talk, body language and guttural reactions give them a personality package that is not rooted on language or references but in the gut reactions that we all feel making it different from ours but still keeping us connected to it. I smell an Oscar or too... oh wait that is just my feet. I hope Cameron makes a bunch of this movies and leaves the humans out of a couple of them, you really don't need them. And when the Holo-decks becomes a reality I know this will be their Minesweeper. Awesome movie in the near future when I get around to make a proper Caerulean Movie I may consider hiring the young  Jimmy Cameron to do some doodles for me he seems to know what he is doing, go see it so he can keep making his movies till then and thanks for reading my ramblings let me know if you have an opinion.

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