English Review – Avatar (2009)


Avatar is a recreation worth-taking, showing what it means to grant a mere cinematic experience.

Just think about any exaggerating positive words and I believe this movie would fit into that. This is entertainment you could expect back then, and unexpectedly, after all of this decade, it is still. Avatar is a mere cinematic experience. Now I get it why this movie peaked the Box Office like none for long. I would certainly love to swift my money for another ticket just to see Pandora once again, and perhaps again later.

James Cameron as producer and director had his own Star Wars: A New Hope in the terms of technological breakthrough, and succeeding of becoming an inspiration towards any geek out there. His movie breaks the boundary, showing that the idea of Sci-fi is limitless.

Cameron brought us to his visualization of the 22nd century where earth’s natural resources depleted. This crisis led The Resources Development Administration (RDA) to Pandora, a habitable moon faraway on space, and look after for some priceless mineral named unobtanium. But it’s not a simple mining opportunity since Pandora has its indigenous. A species of civilized human-like being, blue-skinned and almost twice-a-human tall named Na’vi is believed won’t welcome the idea as it means destroying the nature of theirs, especially their very home, The Hometree (those minerals are here underneath).

RDA’s scientist is working on a peaceful yet humane attempt by developing a hybrid called “Avatar” that connects human into its artificial-but-functioned-really-well Na’ vi bodies. As they say, the body of Na’vi but the mind of human. Captained by easily-convinced woman Dr. Grace Augustine (played by Sigourney Weaver), she is a determined scientist, had been learning anything about Pandora and also happened to open a teaching class for the native in recent past. One of her best recruit officers is deceased in an accident, thus the institute has to approach his identical brother, a former marine which is a paraplegic named Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) to take over the task.

Watching this movie feels like we are being escorted into a recreation we never know before. That sensation seems real because Jake as our main surrogate also had no idea about the journey he’s about to encounter which makes the whole of it perceived relevantly.

Each chapter of the movie gives a better understanding, we feel guided by it and properly introduced into it. As it’s a Sci-fi showcase, it is a gorgeous work, if not one of the best, of art production also. Cameron is shaping both a future of technological design (ie: 3D hologram map, futurist airplane concept, and military robot fighters a la Pacific Rim) and the concept of the imaginative world of Pandora which is very rich in detail. Brought to you is some exclusive look of mythical-fictional animal but with a great physiology and biology attribute to explore. Same with the majority of its flora which at nights would sparkle a luminous light, sending another pleasuring visual moment.

Some feel like very imaginative but several feels like it appears like it was a product of research. Like the people of Na’vi which had their own language, their own anatomy features, their style of primitive life, even their own faith and religion of believing the Mother God of Enywa. The framework is well-established and it’s a big deal.

Thanks to the CGI also which at the same time enhancing Avatar to the whole new level and influencing the industry ever since. The facial motion capture and smooth execution by merging what is computer-generated and what is real make it more alive than any animated movie you could find out there.

About the plot, people say that It is lacking and couldn’t meet the expectation like those technical aspects do. Indeed, it is generic and formulaic, even there’s some saying that calls it a Pocahontas in space.

Avatar has its clichés, and its ego has gotten very immense it’s unrealistic. But the story of war against the machine however touches me. The callous situation brings me an emphatical swing. We are on Na’vi sides, we struggle with them. And it’s super rare that I wish no one of them would die on this. Somehow Cameron delivered a well-written script of introduction, conflict, and resolution. The “you know all this time”, the “you betray your own kind”, the love connection and the intensity progression of final third of the movie. Rather than call it lacking, I would say that’s exactly how to properly write a blockbuster.

Avatar is an adventure that stimulates. Cheerful and awe-inspiring as flying with your dragon with infinite abyss in the background. Rage and unapologetic as watching the brutal failure diplomacy take its redemption. Avatar is a highlight of whatever bounds to it, especially James Cameron. A science devotee and an experimentalist storyteller that succeed in bringing a mere cinematic experience. I did say that again, didn’t I?