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Avatar (2009)

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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.

Director:

James Cameron

Writer:

James Cameron
Popularity
224 ( 106)
Won 3 Oscars. Another 87 wins & 129 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sam Worthington ... Jake Sully
Zoe Saldana ... Neytiri (as Zoë Saldana)
Sigourney Weaver ... Dr. Grace Augustine
Stephen Lang ... Colonel Miles Quaritch
Michelle Rodriguez ... Trudy Chacón
Giovanni Ribisi ... Parker Selfridge
Joel David Moore ... Norm Spellman
CCH Pounder ... Mo'at (as Carol Christine Hilaria Pounder)
Wes Studi ... Eytukan
Laz Alonso ... Tsu'tey
Dileep Rao ... Dr. Max Patel
Matt Gerald ... Corporal Lyle Wainfleet
Sean Anthony Moran Sean Anthony Moran ... Private Fike
Jason Whyte Jason Whyte ... Cryo Vault Med Tech
Scott Lawrence ... Venture Star Crew Chief
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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. Return to Pandora.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official Site

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

18 December 2009 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Avatar: An IMAX 3D Experience See more »

Filming Locations:

Hamakua Coast, Hawaii, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$237,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£8,509,050 (United Kingdom), 20 December 2009, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$77,025,481, 20 December 2009, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$760,507,625

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,787,965,087, 13 February 2015
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (special edition) | (extended cut)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS | SDDS | Sonics-DDP (IMAX version)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

"Unobtainium" is a humorous term used mainly in the aerospace industry. It describes a material that is perfect for an application (but does not exist), is extremely expensive, or violates the laws of physics. Its chemical symbol is Uo. "Unobtainium" is also a general concept term used by sci-fi enthusiasts for any fictional substance that is needed to build a certain device that is crucial to the plot of a sci-fi story. "Unobtainium" is featured in The Core (2003), where the earth-boring vessel called the "Virgil" has a hull made from unobtainium to help it withstand the massive pressures inside the Earth's core. "Unobtainium" is also an anti-gravity element in the online multi-player video game "Skyrates." See more »

Goofs

Magnetic fields strong enough to float mountains would interfere with (if not completely destroy) aircraft avionics. It would be impossible to fly in or around such fields as it would make the aircraft uncontrollable. The avionics two centuries from now, are more likely to be optical than electrical. 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 »

Alternate Versions

"Avatar: Special Edition" was released theatrically less than a year after the original release, it contains approximately eight minutes of extra footage, including new creatures and action scenes. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Tina Fey/Justin Bieber (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

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User Reviews

 
A Whole New World
18 December 2009 | by deathscythe_42See all my reviews

Director James Cameron's return to the world of science fiction cinema is a glorious one indeed. Twelve years after delivering us the highest grossing film of all time, Cameron brings us the sci-fi epic Avatar, a film that is not only visually breathtaking, but also character driven, emotional, exciting, effective, and masterfully directed.

The marketing and hype for this movie was mostly based around the groundbreaking visual effects, so I'll start there. I was lucky enough to get to see this film in a digital 3D theater. My only complaint is with myself, in that I wish I had seen a couple of 3D movies before this one. This was my first experience with a 3D film, so I really didn't have anything to compare it against, but all I knew from the very first shot of the movie was that this was going to be unlike anything I had ever seen before. At first it took me a while to adjust to the dimensions of the film, but after my eyes got used to what i was seeing, I realized that what I was looking at was not a 3D gimmick but a world with an incredible amount of depth. James Cameron rarely gets right in your face with the big things in this movie. He is more subtle than that. The things that appear to be directly in front of you (and they really do) are the little things that capture the ambiance of the scene and make you feel like you're there with the characters. The rest of the 3D effect serve to add dimensions and reality to the scenes.

The visual achievement in this film is not in the action scenes (which are some of the most exciting I've ever seen) but in the lengths that were gone to to bring this world to life. James Cameron has created a planet, a species, and a culture that work in perfect harmony with each other, and likewise the visuals are in perfect harmony. I'll admit I was a little apprehensive that this movie was more computer animated than live action. To me that usually suggests that a film crew is getting lazy, and that it's going to look like a video game. That is not at all the case here. The truth is that without computer animation there is no other way this film would have looked this impeccable. The planet of Pandora is extremely beautiful and detailed, and the Na'vi species fit with it perfectly. In all honesty, you can in fact tell that the aliens are computer animated. They still haven't quite attained the ability to make CG characters that look absolutely 100% unquestionably real, and in a live action world they might still have suffered the out-of-place look that many CG characters in movie get. However, in the computer animated world of Pandora, they blend in seamlessly and beautifully. This is of course not to downplay the design of the na'vi. They look as real as you could possibly hope for. The nearness they have come to looking real, the motion capture used in this movie, the range of facial expressions and emotions that they show, are all unprecedented.

All of that being said, the next big question about this movie is this: Are visual effects all it has to offer? My answer: Not at all. The depth of Avatar goes far beyond the visuals themselves.

As with all of Cameron's movies, Avatar is character driven. The central characters of the film are all dynamic, well written, and very well acted. You go on an adventure with them and throughout the movie you fall in love them (or grow to despise them depending on which characters).

The general plot-line of the movie is a bit generic but that's okay. No, the premise isn't anything completely brand new, but it's still an excellent plot, and one that is familiar to our society and very important for us to remember. Along with that there are still several aspects of the plot that are quite original. James Cameron took a familiar story, one that many storytellers before him have told version of, and made it his own. Furthermore, this is one of those movies where you predict things because you want to see them happen, and when your predictions turn out to come true it's gratifying. That's not to say that everything is predictable, because that would get old. Don't worry, Cameron has thrown in a fair amount of little surprises too.

This film is also as much emotionally effective as it is visually effective. James Cameron is a master at getting a certain emotion or feeling out of his viewers, and every scene in the movie works toward one or more of these effects. It's very light-hearted at times, with a good bit of comedic relief, and then quite intense in other scenes. Some scenes make you fear for the main characters, or perhaps even for yourself. Much of the film is brimming with anticipation and suspense, and several scenes had me simply grinning with excitement.

Overall this is one of the greatest cinematic experiences I've ever had. Avatar is groundbreaking, dynamic, powerful, and a ton of fun. I must say it was worth the wait, but I certainly hope Cameron is here to stay this time.

10/10


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