I missed it: the hype of all the great multi-sequence epic films of the recent years! I was buried underneath mounds of medical books, emerging occasionally, feeling disconnected from the world around me. It was daunting to try to imagine what someone who looks like "Smeagol" resembles, and why everyone around me was suddenly hailing each other with "my ppppreeeecious."
When I heard of James Cameron's Avatar, I vowed that this is one craze I was not about to miss.
I was truly pleasantly surprised! Avatar definitely has something for everyone: the graphic lovers, the romance seekers, and of course the action fans. You can even view it as a literary masterpiece emblazoned with clever allegories and vivid symbols. I could write an essay analyzing all the quest elements in the movie that could make my grade 12 English teacher proud!
What sets Avatar apart from all other epic movies, especially those set in parallel worlds, is that poetic sweetness and romantic connection back to the "roots." In this age of technology, we are increasingly isolated from nature. As we sit here, behind our flat screens and laptops, we use avatars to represent us in our "virtual" lives. We uplink ourselves into the World Wide Web to lead a parallel life. A cold, barren life. We have abandoned our physical selves to lead a parallel "dream" life. Our avatars are antithetical to James Cameron's.
"They have killed their mother," says Neytiri in the movie. And she is right. As the human "invaders" were leaving Pandora, they were hailed off as "returning to their dying world."
This narration in the final scene sent shivers down my spine and brought tears to my eyes. Indeed, the whole movie has created insatiable yearning to reconnect with nature, a desire to weep over the lost rain forests and the extinct species everywhere. This is something to be commended. Not many movies can claim that they leave a positive impact on the generations to come. It certainly beats the vampire madness stirred up by Twilight!
All the "white savior" controversy is, in my opinion, irrelevant — after all, he did turn blue at the end! So is the "anti-American" claim for that matter. Jack Sully is an ex-marine. The indigenous population is the "Na'vi"—recall the book shown in a scene back in the laboratory. Na'vi – possibly a word play on Navy?
Bottom line: I am ready to hop on board the Avatar craze, and join all the fans in anticipation of the sequel(s) and the PC game!