Jan 1, 2010

I see you ... Actually, I don't really.

Avatar - vaguely disappointing. Maybe it was due to a slight fuzziness from the wearing of contact lenses (or was that the 3D glasses?), but I don't quite get the AVATAR WAS AWESOME hype hanging so near-ubiquitously in the virtual air.

I guess the visuals were good, (though it seemed they tried rather hard most of the time to avoid having aliens and humans in the same shots) but I like my 5-star films to have plot in them and intelligence and stuff like that. Don't get me wrong, it was mildly impressive; and I highly appreciated the way the team managed to shove their ideology down the world's throat (surely I'm allowed to anthropomorphise the world) - perhaps I should've taken notes. I can also envisage using some short clips from this heathen-friendly film as teaching points in modern church services or youth-directed christian education programmes. So I'm hardly a hater.

The ideology was in any case, rather interesting - it illustrated well a kind of modern neopagan scientism in what it promoted; but was far more clear in what it opposed i.e. the American military, unbridled capitalism, trashing of the environment etc. Yet I don't think Hollywood's new cause-célèbre-baby works. It could almost have been an anti-war film; if it wasn't for the obvious joy taken from whipping the Earth-soldiers' collective butts, complete with Hollywood explosions. It could have been pro-scientism; even keen to put a scientific slant on the Na'vi spiritual stuff - but the soldiers' offensive atheism was shown up as just that - and ultimately, there was clearly at least one mind behind Pandora's ecological balance, combined with a kind of dualistic view of persons. It could have been anti-Christian; I suppose the soldiers, like the real US military, could have easily had a religious gloss - but the film preferred to both be pro nature-worship (deification of nature) and to leave in a few church-friendly references that might help the DVD sales. ("Born twice", "hallelujah mountains", etc. Come on; "hallelujah mountains"?!) Oh - and I just discovered 'Avatar' means 'Incarnation' in Sanskrit. Cool.

It could have been a really good film; but somehow, it kinda failed.

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