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Avatar (2009)

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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 756,713 users   Metascore: 83/100
Reviews: 3,015 user | 712 critic | 35 from Metacritic.com

A Paraplegic Marine dispatched to the moon Pandora on a unique mission becomes torn between following his orders and protecting the world he feels is his home..

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Won 3 Oscars. Another 73 wins & 101 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Neytiri (as Zoë Saldana)
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Jason Whyte ...
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Storyline

When his brother is killed in a robbery, paraplegic Marine Jake Sully decides to take his place in a mission on the distant world of Pandora. There he learns of greedy corporate figurehead Parker Selfridge's intentions of driving off the native humanoid "Na'vi" in order to mine for the precious material scattered throughout their rich woodland. In exchange for the spinal surgery that will fix his legs, Jake gathers intel for the cooperating military unit spearheaded by gung-ho Colonel Quaritch, while simultaneously attempting to infiltrate the Na'vi people with the use of an "avatar" identity. While Jake begins to bond with the native tribe and quickly falls in love with the beautiful alien Neytiri, the restless Colonel moves forward with his ruthless extermination tactics, forcing the soldier to take a stand - and fight back in an epic battle for the fate of Pandora. Written by The Massie Twins

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Enter the World See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for intense epic battle sequences and warfare, sensuality, language and some smoking | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

| |  »

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

18 December 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Avatar: An IMAX 3D Experience  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$237,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£8,509,050 (UK) (18 December 2009)

Gross:

$760,505,847 (USA) (12 November 2010)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (special edition) | (extended cut)

Sound Mix:

| | | (IMAX version)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The actors playing the Na'vi had cameras attached to their head so that they filmed close-ups of their faces. Dots painted on their faces allowed motion-capture software to record their facial expressions, providing a 'framework' from which the CG artists worked. See more »

Goofs

Jake walks up to the Tree of Souls to pray to Eywa with his ponytail down his back normally. Jake kneels before the tree, with the ponytail in the same spot. Jake reaches down for something, the shot changes, and the pony tail appears in his hand. This was likely done to match Sam Worthington's performance as he was not holding it as he approached the tree, and it would look unnatural for him to do so, being at odds with the motion capture data. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Jake Sully: [Narrating] When I was lying in the V.A. hospital with a big hole blown through the middle of my life, I started having these dreams of flying. I was free. But sooner or later, you always have to wake up.
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no opening credits of any kind (outside of the 20th Century Fox title card). The title of the film doesn't appear on screen until the end of the movie. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Nostalgia Critic: My Pet Monster (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

I See You (Theme from Avatar)
Performed by Leona Lewis
Music by James Horner and Simon Franglen
Lyrics by Simon Franglen, Kuk Harrell, and James Horner
Produced by Simon Franglen and James Horner
Leona Lewis performs courtesy of Syco Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
The best blockbuster in years - the master is back!
15 December 2009 | by (www.clickonline.com) – See all my reviews

It has been 12 years since Cameron unleashed the phenomenon that was Titanic and real fans would have to look as far back as 1991's Terminator 2 for their last proper dose of his incredibly epic action (True Lies, while fun, really doesn't count). So the anticipation for Avatar has long since reached fever pitch and beyond.

Thankfully for the patient masses, Avatar has turned out to be the biggest and best event movie of the year, perhaps the decade. The story is pure Cameron simplicity – a paraplegic ex-marine is given a chance to walk again through the use of a unique alien body, called an Avatar. It is his job to gain the trust of the natives so that a greedy corporation can steal the precious metal from their lush moon. Jake's (Sam Worthington) crippled main character is the perfect point of contact for the audience – not only is he new to the visual delights of Pandora but his disability means that every moment in his Avatar body is one of glorious freedom from the confinement of his chair. When the Corporations intentions become more sinister, Jake must choose between his new found place with the natives and his own race and fight for what he believes in.

Avatar combines parts of Pocahontas and Braveheart with a liberal dose of Space Marines into an epic whole that takes nearly three full hours to unfold. We could criticise that length, the weak story and the hammy dialogue. We could attack its thinly-veiled ecological message or the frankly bizarre spirituality in its second half but honestly nothing can spoil the experience while you are enveloped in it. And a large part of that is down to the brilliant use of 3D – which is both subtle and incredibly effective. Til now, we have been making movies with 3D elements, Avatar is the first truly 3D film and might well prove to be one of the most significant things to happen to blockbuster film-making since Star Wars.

Cameron is also pushing the envelope with truly photo-real CG – something which has been promised for years but has finally been delivered with Avatar. The interactions of the characters with the environment is incredible and the detail on the faces of the motion-captured leads (Worthington and Star Trek's Zoe Saldana) bring them to life. You will believe totally in their performances, representing another quantum leap in tools which have rarely been used for anything other than spectacle.

Make no mistake, Avatar is an important film from a technical standpoint but it is also great entertainment. The world of Pandora is a stunning spectacle from scene to scene and as Jake learns more about the Na'vi the film approaches the kind of light hearted adventure story which has been absent from movie theatres for years. Then the final act explodes into tragedy and desperate action, with the final half hour a blistering life or death struggle that has to be seen to be disbelieved.

Over the coming days you will be hearing a lot about Avatar, and some of the critical reaction is bound to focus on its weaknesses in a bid to appear appropriately reserved and objective. But this is not a film to be dissected or examined, rather one to be experienced with a warm crowd, a great sound system, in 3D as you bask in the knowledge that the movie-making master is back!


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