Home > Uncategorized > In which I wonder why I didn’t really like Avatar that much

In which I wonder why I didn’t really like Avatar that much

Ok, I didn’t really expect much from Avatar, because I am officially old and curmudgeonly. In fact, I feel rather like Panthro (the least sensitive of the Thundercats) who, when confronted with something of awesome, life-altering beauty, said "it’s pretty" or something like that.

Avatar is pretty. The effects are no doubt a great achievement, but at my advanced age I tend to suffer special effects fatigue at about the 20 minute mark. Avatar comes across as an amalgam of three familiar, superficially rendered storylines, a handful of character stereotypes, and maybe one too many chase scenes. It’s not the sort of movie that’s going to stay with me. You know what movie does stay with me, year after year? Aliens. But I like my futuristic visions of hell as overtly dystopian as I can get them. This is probably due to a childhood kept carefully ignorant of Disney and its ilk by well meaning parents. I find chestburster aliens much less disturbing than the friendly flying jellyfish type. You always know where you stand with a chestburster.

In Avatar‘s defense, it is a fun romp. You know, with a Message. And Sigourney Weaver kicks ass as usual. (With SCIENCE!) I shouldn’t say she transcends it all, but (and this could all be just my skewed perception) she has a certain wry gravity, not to mention a fair amount of cred left over from Aliens/Ghostbusters/SNL/Death and the Maiden/The TV Set, etc. that makes her the most fun thing to watch on the screen.

Ok, I guess I sort of worked that through. Off to purchase a copy of Aliens.

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