Katniss Everdeen voluntarily takes her younger sister's place in the Hunger Games: a televised competition in which two teenagers from each of the twelve Districts of Panem are chosen at random to fight to the death.
A young man who survives a disaster at sea is hurtled into an epic journey of adventure and discovery. While cast away, he forms an unexpected connection with another survivor: a fearsome Bengal tiger.
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
James Cameron started working on the film following the cancellation of his TV series Dark Angel (2000). See more »
When Jake wakes up from Cryogenic sleep he says "It doesn't feel like 6 years." but when he ejects from the sleep chamber the doctor attending to the passengers proclaims "You have been in Cryo for 5 years, 9 months and 16 days." meaning, they have only been in cryogenic sleep for 5 years and not 6. See more »
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.
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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 »
I was not blown away by this movie like everyone else seems to be. First, the good stuff. There are some good actors in here, especially the actor who plays Jake (though I might be biased, because he was pretty hot), and they all commit to what they're doing and make it believable. As everyone says, the graphics and visuals are pretty freakin' awesome (as well they should be, with the budget of this movie). The world that Cameron creates is stunning, mesmerizing, and pure: the special effects are amazing. Like many, I saw it in 3D and it was good old fashioned movie-going fun. Yay!
Okay, now for the not so good parts. As others have stated, the storyline/plot is a little lacking. I had trouble understanding the motivations of many of the characters. Ah, yes, character development - that would have been nice, too. Don't expect any. Yes, it's a recycled and re-used plot: clichéd and often predictable. It seems reminiscent of many great classics, my favorite being "Star Wars." Now I'll be the first to admit that the mythical structure of "Star Wars" was not completely original, but at least it seemed Lucas "made it his own" (to quote American Idol?) with his original characters and unique setting. "Avatar" is practically plagiarism (one line in particular made me want to shout "THE FORCE!" in the middle of the movie). Also- we get practically no character background at all, so we have no idea what makes these people tick (perhaps there would have been more if the edited version wasn't already a staggering 2 hrs 40 min.). Instead, we get one-dimensional, stock characters that had me rolling my eyes underneath my uncomfortable and overpriced 3D glasses. Lastly, the film is doused with lessons in morality from Mr. Cameron; it is a blatant criticism of US foreign policy. Not everyone will pick up on this, which I understand, since most of us want mindless entertainment at the movies. But upon closer review, I don't see how some people cannot see it. One of the "evil" characters actually says: "We'll fight terror with terror!" (Though mind you, they are attacking a planet filled with peaceful inhabitants who have never attacked them, for the simple quest of obtaining a precious metal called...unobtainium...::rolls eyes again::) Now I don't mind a little political satire here and there, but it seems misplaced in what is seemingly intended as a mindlessly entertaining popcorn flick.
To give an example of the poor story-telling and lack of motivation: the "evil" humans are attacking the peaceful planet of Pandora in hopes of getting more "unobtainium" (gah it's so cheesy) but Cameron never bothers to tell us WHY. It is barely even mentioned. Is it just pretty and shiny like gold? Or, as another reviewer brilliantly pointed out, this stuff could save lives on Earth for all we know. It is never explained and the movie makers just assume you will accept it and not care what the reason is.
I was actually really glad to come to IMDb and find there were others who felt the same way. I don't think it was an awful movie, I just don't think it's worthy of the enormous praise that seems to surround it. Should you see it? Yeah, sure, it's pretty entertaining I guess. And if you are into graphics/special effects, and/or don't mind gaping plot holes, then you'll probably love it.
Bottom line: Remember when Lucas revamped the "Star Wars" saga with the three new prequels, and instead of telling a great story with interesting characters like he did with the original trilogy, he got so obsessed with graphics and special effects that it pretty much ruined the whole movie? Yeah, it's kind of like that. I guess they stole that from "Star Wars," too.
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