Thursday, January 21, 2010

Pocahontas in Spaaace

I finally saw Avatar this weekend. Not at the Imax as Smith and I originally intended but we still saw it in Real3D. It’s a shame we didn’t get to live our Imax dream but it would have been another two weeks and I’ve come so close to people nearly ruining it for me that I just couldn’t wait any longer.

The story is good. Nothing amazing, and as many people before have pointed out, highly derivative of other works. It is enjoyable and a thoroughly fun movie though.

The thought and detail that’s gone into the world is incredible. Good sci-fi and fantasy have a good grasp of the cultures of their races. Avatar goes so much further. Not just with the Na’vi where the story dictates that they’re culture is worked out, but the biology of the world.

However, where Avatar really shines is the special effects and the 3D. Not once during the movie did I find myself thinking the CGI was ropey. In fact I didn’t even think about it all and just accepted it. That’s one hell of an achievement. Watching a film that’s something stupid like 90% CGI I accepted Pandora and its creatures just as much as any human character on screen. The 3D was wonderful too, spending the majority of the time just adding depth to the shots and making the world just feel that bit more real and immersive. Only once or twice did they pull “WOW SOMETHING FLYING AT YOU” that the other 3D films ram down your throat, and those were the times that I caught myself rolling my eyes.

That said I loved the film. Not sure how it’s going to stand up on the small screen, even with new fangled Blu-rays. News of 3D TVs may help it but they’re going to be ridiculous prices for a while. I still say that outside of the cinema 3Ds not going to take off in any major way until some genius invents a way of it working without glasses. Then we’ll have holograms and that’s a whole different story.
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