I’ve finally caught up with the rest of the world and seen Avatar. Not in 3D though. That experience is still yet to achieve.
I simply love what you can do with a computer and a great deal of skill and additional technology. I think it is fantastic that we can travel to other worlds existing only in someone’s mind.
But this stunning World aside, what do we got?
A classic story.
This does not mean that it is bad. It strikes primal tones within us, and the theme is as important as ever. The story is not the problem.
What I think is really disappointing is the poor work done with the characters. A classic story does not mean that the characters must be cliché and stereotype.
All the characters were the same throughout the entire story, except for a small shift in the main character. They had a label each and it was either black or white.
The Na’vi people were good, the humans bad; the general obstinate to utter stupidity.
There were no realistic characters anywhere. They had a trait, one trait only, like Cinderella is always sweet and nice and her Stepmom evil and nasty at all times.
We never get to know what makes Jake turns from being a spy to love his new life; or rather why he was a spy in the first place, since it was so obvious that he liked being inside his Avatar.
Then he very cliché-like looses his honour and becomes shunned and despised, a situation where I think brilliant people talk and try to understand the whole picture, instead of acting on pure instinct. Very disrespectful towards the Na'vi characters.
Jake gains his respect back by simply riding a dragon-like creature, and yes, I say simply, because it looked very simple. And by doing this without effort the Na’vi people were treated as simple natives believing in divine omens and placed Jake as a human (at least in mind) above them. He doesn’t prove his worthy by other means than using an old legend, like a trick. If he at least had proven his worthy by being mentally strong, instead of just kind-hearted stubborn.
The value of a life is not – as I recall it – an issue in this movie. It’s about human greed.
The Na’vi who care for all life-forms do not value a human life at all, something that they logically should, since they have predators surely taking some Na’vi lives are still treated with respect.
The issue what Na’vi lives are worth to humans, is hardly an issue either. They have no more value than animals to the humans, and that is that.
As I said it is about human greed.
And this greed has led to the killing of our own Eywa – “mother Earth” – an important message just flying by. What are humans if the soul of our world is dead? Do we have a soul any longer? Any afterlife?
What I want to say is that with a little more developed characters the story would have been so much more fascinating and not so simple-minded.
Wouldn’t it have been much more interesting if the general gained some insight and retreated? At least, I would have been surprised.