Quick Thoughts on James Cameron’s Avatar —> Spoliers
Well, I finally saw Avatar in 3D yesterday. On the whole, I think I enjoyed it. The effects are, indeed, mind-blowing. The story, on the other hand, is the same tired David vs. Goliath theme that inevitably leaves audiences with a warm fuzzy feeling inside. But, all that I’ll draw to your attention to here is a strange paradox about the film:
The film is set-up on binaries that we are all familiar with: Science vs. Nature, West vs. East/indigenous, etc… In fact, it is quite hostile toward science and technology. The natives worship the flows and energies of their planet (i.e. the biota). The human-industrialist occupiers want only some glimmering substance underneath a tree sacred to the natives. Then, surprise-surprise, one of the occupiers falls in love with one of the natives (and their way of life).
But the paradox of Avatar occurs in the film wanting you to root for the earthy Natives who worship a Nature goddess and are in touch with their planet while you sit in a dark multiplex theatre with plastic over your eyes watching a highly processed type of 3D film technology. There is something of a juncture between Medium and Message. While I was watching Avatar I kept thinking that I was plunking down my $15 to be offered the ability to think I was doing something good, while the reality was that I was feeding $15 into the same technical process that the movie has the audience rallying against.
Full Review to Follow…