Say what you will about James Cameron.
There is no "but" in this sentence. Say what you want. The man is clearly a bullet. You may have noticed that his first film, Avatar, is a boring collection of dated and offensive colonial nonsense, combined with (at the time) avant-garde visuals, and he's probably sitting there blowing his million dollar bills. (which he probably has).
So, the funniest "Avatar. The Way of the Water' is that the new film does not repeat the mistakes of the original, but tries to overcome them. Jake Sully (voiced and directed by Sam Worthington) may be in the title role, but in some ways he's a bigger mess than ever, this time making a lot of mistakes he can't fix. The Way of the Water is no longer about Jake Sully's journey; it's about her children growing up surrounded by different cultures and struggling to find their identity. This makes the film quite compelling, even if it is still built on clumsy foundations.
And Cameron's screenplay, co-written by Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver (Mulan), with Josh Friedman and Shane Salerno, is often heavy-handed, distracting and overwrought, boasting new ideas and expertly refreshing familiar elements. his previous films. In many ways Avatar.
It's been a few years since the Na'vi banished almost everyone from Pandora, and that's long enough for Jake and Neytiri (Zoe Saldanha) to have two teenage sons, Netheyam (Jamie Flutters, High School for Good and Evil ) and Law. (Brittany Dalton, "Goliath") and a young daughter named Tuck (Trinity Jo-Lee Bliss, "Garcia"). They also adopted Kiri, who was born from the comatose avatar of the now-deceased scientist Augustine (Sigourney Weaver, who also plays Kiri via motion capture). The identity of Kiri's father is briefly discussed early in the film, and the theories are so disturbing that you probably wish no one would talk about them.
Of course, the thing about kicking people off your planet is that no matter how politely (or forcefully) you ask, one day they'll come back. And now they have, with a vengeance. Led by General Francis Ardmore (Eddie Falco) plans to leave Earth and colonize Pandora. After all, if sign aliens can attack a planet where the water kills them, why shouldn't humans colonize a planet where the air is toxic?
Instead of taking vast armies with him, Ardmore relies on a small group of marines, but now they are avatars that inhabit scientifically engineered Ship bodies. And yet, since Cameron gathered the whole gang, they're led by Colonel Miles Quaritch (Stephen Lang), who died in the first film but loaded his brain onto a flash drive anyway. Few actors can pull off an "O Poor Yorick" moment with their skulls, and Lang certainly pulls it off.
And since Jake and Neytiri have children, Cameron draws parallels with his villain; Quaritch spends most of the film with Sard (Jack Champion), a teenager who was too young to survive in the cryocell when humanity lost the war. continued. Growing up on Pandora with the Navis. Quaritch and Spider's close father-son relationship seems reminiscent of Ripley and Newt's eye in Aliens, if in Aliens the Xenomorphs were just the good guys and the Marines were even dumber.
It takes too long to reveal the main story, but suffice it to say that by the end, and it's a pretty big "eventually," Jake is forced to flee with his family to an island ruled by the Na'vi. . they have evolved to spend a lot of time underwater and interact with animals of fantastic fish creatures.
As Jake and Neytiri struggle to adjust to their new surroundings, the children take on most of the hard work of adjusting. They quickly find themselves in some of the most mature storylines in teen movie history, including first crushes, bigoted bullies, and the part in Bingo where Bonehead befriends a mermaid and no one believes. Except Avatar. The Way of Water's Superkit is solid.
That doesn't mean these scenes don't work. James Cameron has repeatedly relied on narrative clichés and often avoids them. It's pretty funny to see a respectful remake of a beach movie plot that sees Star Wars recreating scenes from old samurai movies.
"Avatar. There's more to the story of "The Way of Water," but for a movie that's over three hours long, it's not much more than you might think. Some characters have a lot in common with others, like Neytiri surprisingly little. Some secrets are revealed, others are kept for future films. Let's hope that one day they will understand what makes Pandoran coffee so delicious. In this film and the original, the human villains are always fighting their faces off on giant warships, even if it seems inevitable. There must be something in the water.
See, the problem with a three-hour movie like this is that as much as James Cameron wants us to reset our internal clocks and take him on a field trip, our minds have more time to wander and think. And it sometimes makes the odd details of Cameron's Avatar movies more obvious than they should be, especially on first viewing.
About places. CGI in Avatar. Waterway is an inch of its life, recreating expansive locations and beautiful aliens in great detail. The film is bright enough to compensate for any light lost through the viewer's 3D lenses, so colors always pop. This is by no means the most beautiful animated film of the year.
But the one-sided sharpness of the film, along with the high frame rate, also creates problems. Sometimes the action speeds up when people move quickly across the screen, which can take a long time. And the meticulous attention to detail in each frame and the tendency to depict these scenes in focus can make the film's visual language unnecessarily difficult to interpret. We often judge complex visuals by looking for where to direct the characters and the story, rather than paying close attention to that information.
Sometimes, in its busiest moments, Avatar: The Last Airbender. "The Way of Water" can be frustratingly misleading. And while the film was clearly meant to be watched on the big screen and often feels like you're visiting an amusement park, you end up dreaming of watching it at home, on a much smaller scale, where you can appreciate it all. details instead of absolutes.
However, when Cameron's film grinds to a halt, and cinematographer Russell Carpenter's (Titanic) stunning visuals created by the film's massive visual effects team may take a while, Avatar: The Last Airbender can take a while. . sometimes magical.
After some pacing issues in the first act and some odd plot decisions in the second, the film's breathtaking climax takes you by surprise. You'd think the movie has more twists and turns with so much time left, but Cameron introduces Avatar: The Last Airbender. Waterway as an incredible non-stop action sequence. immediate threats change dramatically, sometimes in an instant. It's like watching a tidal wave start from a small bump in the ocean miles away. When it reaches its climax, despite the film's many other flaws, it overwhelms us and finally rewards us with a truly moving and impressive ending.
All's well that ends well, I guess. Everything used to mix well.
"Avatar. Water Road opens in US theaters on December 16 at 20th Century Studios.