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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
209 ( 88)
Won 3 Oscars. Another 85 wins & 128 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 ... Moat
Wes Studi ... Eytukan
Laz Alonso ... Tsu'tey
Dileep Rao ... Dr. Max Patel
Matt Gerald ... Corporal Lyle Wainfleet
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:

Return to Pandora 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:

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 | 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

When Grace is first helping Jake into his sleeper, as the lid is closing, Jake, fed up with her, barely audible, tells her "kiss the darkest part of my lily white......". the sound trails off. See more »

Goofs

When the colonel is in the robot asking Jake to report to him, in one scene a red disconnect flag is hanging off the robot's leg, but when the colonel starts to walk, the flag is gone. 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

The initial end credits soar over the world of Pandora. See more »

Alternate Versions

The 178-minute extended version has the same additions as included in the 2010 Special Edition with the following additions and changes:
  • The biggest addition is the alternate opening with Jake describing life on Earth. At a bar with his friend he picks a fight with a man who was hitting his girlfriend. However, he is thrown out by the doorman into a back alley. Two men then approach him to tell him about his twin brother Tommy's death and the proposal of taking his brother's place. There's a closeup shot of Tommy's face as he's cremated which morphs to Jake aboard the spaceship, emphasizing that he & Tommy are twins.
  • Before flying from the Venture Start to Pandora, an extra line of the pilot has been added: "Copy, Venture Star. Go for de-orbit burn at 2-2-4 niner."
  • The next two additions deal more with the abandoned school scene in the Special Edition. The first one happens when Grace considers a picture of Neytiri that Jake finds; Grace remembers her time with Neytiri & her twin sister Sylwanin. She reveals her dead, obviously killed by the mercenaries as well as Norm once had a relationship with her.
  • The second addition: After Grace insists Jake eat something, he sees a picture of Grace teaching a few Na'vi at school, two of them being a young Neytiri and her twin Sylwanin. She describes what happened on the day Sylwanin was killed and how the school was abandoned.
  • After the marines vacate the lab and prepare for retaliation, there is an extension of the scene which reveals that the marines wanted and planned for a war with the Na'vi. The small sequence that happens in the theatrical version after that was removed.
  • There is also the alternative Family-friendly audio track, which substitutes profane words with a more clean words. James Cameron said in an interview that the track was included when his young son complained on hearing that accidentally while playing the movie.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Best in Film: The Greatest Movies of Our Time (2011) 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

 
The best blockbuster in years - the master is back!
15 December 2009 | by ftylSee 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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