Friday, December 30, 2022

Avatar Review

"Avatar" is a science fiction epic directed by James Cameron and released in 2009. The movie tells the story of Jake Sully, a disabled former Marine who is sent to the distant planet of Pandora to participate in a corporate-funded project to mine a valuable mineral called unobtanium. While there, Jake falls in love with the native Pandora inhabitants, the Na'vi, and becomes torn between his loyalty to his human employers and his growing connection to the Pandora ecosystem and its inhabitants.

One of the standout elements of "Avatar" is its groundbreaking visuals and special effects, which were groundbreaking at the time of its release and hold up well even by today's standards. The use of motion capture technology and 3D animation allowed the filmmakers to create fully-realized, lifelike characters and breathtakingly realistic environments that are a joy to behold. The movie's action scenes are also well-choreographed and exciting, with impressive set pieces that showcase the unique creatures and landscapes of Pandora.

The story of "Avatar" is not particularly original, with elements of the "white savior" trope and a simplistic, good-versus-evil narrative that pits the human characters against the Na'vi. However, the movie's themes of environmentalism and cultural imperialism are timely and thought-provoking, and the performances of the cast, particularly Sam Worthington as Jake and Zoe Saldana as the Na'vi warrior Neytiri, are strong.

Overall, "Avatar" is a visually stunning and entertaining action adventure that is worth seeing for its groundbreaking special effects and strong performances. While its story may be somewhat simplistic and familiar, the movie's themes and visuals more than make up for it.

Best wishes,

John Coffey

P.S.  I didn't write this review.  An AI called chatGPT did.

Sunday, December 25, 2022

IT (2017)


When it was announced that Stephen King's very popular novel IT was being made into a feature film, there was almost no end to the hype.  People were very excited about it, and the reviews ended up pretty favorable.  My favorite movie critic, Richard Roeper, gives the film four stars.

However, I see almost no redeeming qualities to the movie.  It has one very disturbing image after another.  The movie about a supernatural killer clown apparently comes from a very dark place in Stephen King's psyche.  We see children constantly in danger and facing gruesome and gory events that seem to go on without end.

A group of preteen boys take it upon themselves to fight this danger, however unrealistic this may be.  They are also plagued by bullies who are far more sadistic than what would seem plausible, along with some uncompassionate adults who are a bit sadistic themselves.

One problem that I have with Stephen King is that he treats American characters as stereotypes, often cruel ones, that are not believable.  There is the crazy religious woman in "The Mist", a movie that didn't work at all for me.  His novel, Under the Dome, is full of stereotyped "good old boy" characters that aren't realistic for Americans anymore.  It is almost painful to read.

When I watched the movie Jurassic Park, I didn't like seeing children in mortal danger.  I have the same problem here.  Nor is it realistic that children would rise to the occasion to take on the mortal threat.  After everything that happens in this movie, these children should be experiencing severe post-traumatic stress.

The movie omits a scene from the book where a teenage girl has sex with six preteen boys as a way of bonding with them.  Very dark indeed.

At no point is it explained where this supernatural killer clown comes from.  Reportedly there was a scene filmed that might have explained it, but it was cut because it was too disturbing.  Given how disturbing the rest of the film is, that's saying something.

I thought that I liked Stephen King novels, like "The Dead Zone" and "The Stand".  I may have to rethink this.

Rating:  D.

Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Rotten Tomatoes Won’t Exist In 5 Years. Here’s Why.

Avatar Is An Absolute Snooze Fest

The only movie that almost caused me to walk out of the theater was Uncut Gems.
Avatar was passable as entertainment. Not saying that it was great, but it was good enough.