Home Entertainment Avatar: The Way of Water review – a thunderously underwhelming damp squib of a return

Avatar: The Way of Water review – a thunderously underwhelming damp squib of a return

by admin

Astonishing! Enthralling! Thrilling! Immersive! None of those phrases might sensibly be utilized to the three-and-a-quarter-hour Moist Smurfahontas stodgeathon that’s Avatar: The Means of Water. A lumbering, humourless, tech-driven damp squib of a film, this long-awaited (or dreaded?) sequel to one of many highest grossing movies of all time builds upon the mighty flaws of its predecessor, delivering a patience-testing fantasy dirge that’s longer, uglier and (amazingly) much more clumsily scripted than its predecessor, mixing trite characterisation with sub-Roger Dean 70s album-cover designs and thunderously underwhelming motion sequences. In water.

We choose up a number of years after the wholly forgettable antics of 2009’s Avatar. On the distant world Pandora, Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) has gone native, elevating a household with Neytiri (Zoe Saldaña) after shedding his human pores and skin to inhabit his alien avatar (see earlier movie). When the “sky folks” of Earth come in search of a struggle, amongst different issues, the forest-friendly Sullys are compelled to flee to distant archipelagos the place the water-tribes dwell. Right here, they have to abandon their tree-hugging way of life and be taught the methods of the reef folks, who’ve thicker tails and are a bit extra turquoise. Actually.

The Metkayina tribe are led by Tonowari (Cliff Curtis) and his associate, Ronal (Kate Winslet), whose children don’t click on with the Sully brood, setting the scene for a lot teen-movie model internecine squabbling adopted by inevitable boring bromance bonding. En route, our blue heroes will be taught to experience amphibious skimwings (think about How you can Prepare Your Dragon as retold by the writers of Star Trek and Stingray), to talk the language of the seas in all its wondrous wetness, and to befriend a broken, whale-like creature (assume Free Willy in area) who will turn out to be a key participant within the movie’s emotional baggage dealing with.

There are moments that should be thrillingly thrilling. These are simple to identify as a result of the characters on display screen shout “Woohoo!” in the identical manner that younger Anakin shouted “Yippee!” in Star Wars: Episode 1 – The Phantom Menace. Sadly, the comparisons with Lucas’s ill-fated area opera prequels don’t finish there. Like Jar Jar Binks, the residents of Pandora seem to have been designed by a stoned sixth former whereas listening to Tales From Topographic Oceans, all wide-eyed Center-earth marvel combined with cod FernGullymodel fairytale heroism. There’s additionally a feral human baby (he speaks usually, however sometimes growls annoyingly) whom James Cameron presumably imagines to be a thematic descendent of Rudyard Kipling’s Mowgli, however whose irritating presence merely jogged my memory how a lot I most popular the plush worlds of Jon Favreau’s The Jungle Book and Andy Serkis’s Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle.

In fact the joyous watery wibbling (“Woohoo!”) can not final, and the sky folks come calling, resulting in a hyberbolic motion showdown that bolts the third act of Aliens (against-the-clock sprog hunt via exploding/collapsing steel constructions) with the primary act of The Poseidon Journey (watery world turned the wrong way up) and the second half of Titanic (breath holding and private conflict-solving mixed!).

As for the 3D – a moribund format that has risen and fallen just like the tide on umpteen events all through cinema historical past – the one factor it immerses us in is the tough realities of the Chinese language theatrical market, the place spectacular stereoscopy nonetheless guidelines the roost. Let’s face it, with very few notable exceptions (Creature From the Black Lagoon within the Fifties, Flesh for Frankenstein within the Seventies, Gravity within the twenty first century), 3D has executed valuable little to “improve” anybody’s viewing expertise. However when the monetary stakes are this excessive (The Means of Water reportedly must take round $2bn – £1.6bn – to scrub its face), Cameron merely can not afford to desert a gimmick for which he has turn out to be chief gong banger, normal bearer and book-keeper.

Beneath all of it is identical honkingly bland anti-imperial/anti-colonial/eco-friendly metaphor that gave the primary Avatar the phantasm of gravitas, though it’s laborious to miss how a lot Cameron enjoys the human {hardware} sequences, which have a tough physicality that stands in stark distinction to the floaty computer-game visuals of the remainder of the movie. Whether or not issues will enhance over the course of subsequent films (two extra sequels are already in progress) stays to be seen. On this proof, I doubt it.

Source link

You may also like

Leave a Comment