Sign up for our newsletters   

Baltimore City Paper home.

film Home > Movie Reviews

Film

Blue Man Coup

No, really--Avatar is kinda freaking awesome


Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana's computer-generated on-screen stand-ins target the

By Joe MacLeod | Posted 12/16/2009

Directed by James Cameron

James Cameron (Titanic, The Terminator, Aliens) pissed everybody off at the Oscars once when he said he was the "king of the world" just because he won an Oscar, but now he has gone and made a whole new planet of which he really is king of--God, basically. Also, he will soon be living on a Planet of Money, some of it yours.

The movie-planet of Avatar is called Pandora, and it is the scene of an agglomeration of like, Every Movie James Cameron Ever Made, plus Every Movie You Have Ever Seen, plus some television shows, so no worries about absorbing the subtle nuances of the Plot, the King of Pandora is going to futuristically robot-hammer that shit into your skull for about the first half hour of this 162-minute kickass ass-kicking romantic sciencer that kicks ass with the Best Special Effects Ever, as of 2009, A.D.

The trailers and TV spots don't even come close to the seamless, luxurious, and immersive computer eyeball-trickery you will witness looking at an iMax screen while wearing some superdork 3-D glasses, but really, don't look at this movie any other way, you fucking nerd. Also, maybe think real hard about that jumbo Coke with your popcorn, OK? It cannot be overemphasized: 162 minutes is a long time, trust.

Meanwhile back on Pandora, there's this Stuff called--get ready for it--"Unobtainium," har! Unobtainium is this super-rare rock that is very hard to obtain, and as the corporate slickee-boy most ably portrayed by Giovanni Ribisi explains, it's worth a shitload of money and is good, expensive, nothing will stop us from getting it, blah, blah, we really didn't pay attention because we were waiting for the movie part of the movie to start, but turns out there's a shitload of Unobtainium (Still: Har!) on the planet, and so this Company, backed up by the Marines (featuring the outstanding Stephen Lang as totally ooh-rah Marine Col. Miles Quaritch), wants to strip-mine it out from under the beings who live there already, the Na'vi, a race of blue and supercool people who are like nine feet tall and good at hunting with arrows and being in touch with Nature and the Planet, which, thanks to Science, provides totally hero-named Jake Sully (Sam Worthington, who was good in that last crappy Terminator movie, and he's perfectly fine here as a paraplegic Space Marine whose Heath Care Plan doesn't cover the surgery he needs to be able to walk) the opportunity to inhabit a Na'vi body that kinda looks like him--an avatar, if you will--in an effort to win the Hearts and Minds of the Na'vi people by looking like them or something.

So there will be blood, of the Rated PG-13 variety, "for intense epic battle sequences and warfare, sensuality, language and some smoking," and there will also be an entire working planet of flora and fauna, including raver-trippy bioluminescent jungles, freaktastic catdog predators, hammerhead rhinos, and a screaming army of flying dinosaurs that will save the Economy next Xmas with toy sales when every kid wants a flying dinosaur or a Na'vi doll or some of James Cameron's latest military hardware instead of all that tired Star Wars shit. An entire new world, this is.

Along for the avatar-ing is Sigourney Weaver as a Do-Gooder Scientist, but basically this means nine-foot tall, blue Sigourney Weaver playing basketball wearing a half shirt and booty pants, because yes, James Cameron is the most successful 12-year old boy in the Solar System, and this flick (but probably the no-doubt-crazy-not-to sequel) is the culmination of his healthy and highly functional fetish for the born-again-hard Amazon-type female who could snap your neck or make with you the sweet, sweet indigenous love, rated Blue. Soon, in the not-so-distant Future, James Cameron will declare all money be changed from green to blue.

E-mail Joe MacLeod

Comments powered by Disqus
Calendar
CP on Facebook
CP on Twitter