(Source: cinemablend.com)

What the heck is James Cameron’s next movie really about?

James Cameron’s Avatar is like Aliens meets Lord of the Rings if it were written by Al Gore, with the battle of Endor thrown in for good measure. It’s preachy, it’s repetitive, it’s derivative, and in spite of that when you see it up on a movie screen there’s a pretty good chance it’ll be the coolest thing you’ve ever seen.

The whole thing culminates quite literally in an Ewoks versus Empire style super-battle, with the natives using such familiar Ewok battle tactics such as falling rocks, log battering rams, giant nets, and bolos to fight a desperate war against the encroaching death machines of Earth’s military industrial complex. The only difference really is that these Ewoks aren’t cute (though Cameron does seem to spend a lot of time trying to make his aliens are incredibly sexy and erotic), they don’t do much singing, and when they do kill something it’s in horribly gruesome, rated-R ways.

Judging from what’s in the script, it’s likely that for at least 75 percent of the film you won’t see anything on the screen that isn’t a computer rendered construct. The entire planet and all the aliens on it will have to be completely CGI, and most of the movie is spent following them around in Pandora’s forest, with no real human present on screen except those which are wearing alien (and CGI rendered) Avatars.

I guess what I’m saying here is that the script kind of sucks, but that doesn’t mean Avatar will suck as a movie too. It has big-budget, brainless popcorn potential, assuming they tone down the extremist environmentalism guilt trip and focus more on aliens, aircraft, and blowing shit up. But don’t expect anymore from that. It has lofty ambitions of making grandiose statements about the nature of humanity and the dangers of technology and disrespect for the environment, but it’s too clumsy, too cartoonish, too unrealistic, and too heavy handed to do any of that.

It’s a blockbuster, and if it tries to be more than that expect Avatar to fall flat.

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