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|Movies That Are Destroying America - Avatar Edition|
Sunday, January 17, 2010
I thought about reviewing James Cameron's new movie Avatar (2009) -- not to be confused with Pat Cadigan's novel Avatar (1998), or the shonen cartoon Avatar: The Last Airbender (2005-2008) -- but it's become such a monster hit that it would be redundant at this point. I really enjoyed it and it was just what I expected, which is to say it was a big-budget, live-action anime, sans involved plot but complete with mecha and oversized nekomusume. The central sf plot device of the movie is almost identical to that of Poul Anderson's story "Call Me Joe" (1957), but the overarching story is more of a Western set in space than anything. And while this movie isn't hard-sf, Cameron deserves credit for going the extra kilometer and hiring science advisers to give the film more scientific depth than the average Hollywood spectacle. Let's hope this sets a standard. My only real gripe is that when he invented a fictitious element he not only didn't think up a clever name for it, like Cavorite, Protonite, or Etherium, but he actually used the joke name "Unobtanium." WTF? Even Froonium would've been better than that. One thing that did puzzle me was why all the animals on Pandora evolved with organic USB cables growing out of them, but that's since been addressed. I'll let Stephen Colbert explain it.