If you haven’t seen the movie yet and don’t already know how it goes (and can’t guess) then DON’T read this post. I won’t tell you exactly how it ends, but guessing will be child’s play after reading this.
Don’t get me wrong; I loved this movie. I’m listening to the soundtrack right now. It was visually stunning. Beautiful. Could easily develop a fantasy crush on one or two of the Na’vi men.
I really have to agree with my daughter, who said Avatar is Ferngully meets Dances with Wolves. I also have to agree with NYT columnist David Brooks’ article The Messiah Complex. This is a fairly well-known (and common) scenario. It does a disservice to aboriginal populations everywhere. Although, it does paint them in a lovely light, it isn’t an especially realistic one. Aboriginal peoples have the full spectrum of people too, just like us immigrants: there are honest and good people as well as corrupt and evil ones. Most lie somewhere in the middle with a tendency to follow rather than lead.
That’s not really my complaint though. Here comes the spoiler part…..
In the film Neytiri talks about how the entire planet is connected, and then Dr. Grace Augustine says how the nerve connections that all living things on this planet have seem to be able to connect to each other constitute a planetary ‘brain’. THIS is the part that didn’t get sufficiently developed, if you ask me. THIS part is cool. And original.
Why did Cameron have to resort to the traditional “last battle” to settle things? I was really hoping for something more to do with the planet’s ability to act as a single organism. There are so many cool things that could have been done. Roots getting into the machinery; critters behaving badly (we only see a tiny bit of that). They could still have had some final fight – American entertainment seems to demand that conflicts are settled with, well actual conflict, but REALLY, once you decide that the film will culminate in a final battle, the rest just sort of writes itself. It doesn’t take much creativity, and in fact, that whole series of scenes was completely predictable.
Maybe in the sequel, huh?