Tuesday, December 29, 2009

I'm Bbaaa - aaaacccckk

Do you remember the character Russell Casse (the pilot) in the film Independence Day?

In the film Independence Day, humanity triumphed over the aliens as our race faced a dire end as our existence on this planet was threatened  by the monstrous weapons in the "death ships" slowly orbiting the planet and destroying everything in its path.  It has been well over a decade since that movie was released in 1996.  I remember watching it many times as it was a family favourite and each time there was an uplifting feeling at the end when the main characters watch debris from the mothership enter the atmosphere like fireworks.  We always cheered as the aliens had their asses kicked in this movie.

I felt a similar emotion at the end when watching the movie Avatar, but I was rooting for the Aliens this time.

While the movie is being praised mostly for its special filming and 3D effects and the animation, that is not the most interesting aspect of the film, in my mind.  Not to say that the visuals were not stunning and well worth the price of admission.   As far as the visuals are concerned, it is in the same league as the Star Wars movies, perhaps even in its own league given the innovative filming techniques.   For more detail on the techniques check out wiki - suffice to say if these filming techniques catch on we should have some interesting movies coming up in the next few years..

I dare say that this is a movie I will want to see more than once and in a theatre equipped with the IMAX 3D because of the excellent 3D effects.  

Warning:  SPOILER ALERT:  skip the next paragraph if you have not seen the movie and want to be kept in suspense about the plot and outcome.

It is a great movie full of action heros and villans. As you learn about the Navi way of life you come to identify with this alien race and how they value every living thing on their planet so when the battle scene arrives you identify totally with the poor Navi and want the nasty humans to get an ass whipping in the battle for the Navi's home and sacred ground.  Of course we cheer on  Jake Sully, our hero, who ends up changing sides and organizes the Navi to defend themselves and overcome the invaders.

There is so much symbolism in this movie that we go away from the theatre thinking about nature, biodiversity and how we treat the planet and the creatures which inhabit it. It the scene where they were bulldozing the home tree there is some pretty obvious parallels with the bulldozing of the Amazon Rain forest and the displacement of the Brazilian natives who live there.

That the film has been in production since 1996 is pretty amazing. James Cameron, who gave us Titanic, is certainly a director of great vision and talent.  He wrote the scriptment upon which the film is based.  Avatar was officially budgeted at $237 million (although rumoured much more was actually spent) and has grossed an estimated $232,180,000 Worldwide on its opening weekend, the ninth-largest opening-weekend gross of all time, and the largest for a non-franchise, non-sequel and original film. Two more sequels are planned.  They will be carting their profits away in wheel barrows for sure.

It is is another movie for my all time favourites list, right beside Independence Day.

For trailers and video clips go here.  For the official film website go here.

Oh ya - the opening title - I am back to blogging after a long period of intermittent and infrequent activity.  Last month's excuse was the NaNoWriMo and this month it was my Cuban holiday and then Christmas which kept me occupied elsewhere, but now I am back at it and am going to try and do some daily blogging for a while to get back into the swing of things. Of course in a few weeks I will be working on my 2nd draft of my NaNoWriMo novel, so maybe not daily blogging at that point... but we will see.

Hope everyone out there in the blogsphere had a wonderful Christmas (or other) holiday!  The first leg in our holiday season is now over and leg 2 - New Years - is nearly upon us!  Happy Holidays!

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