Ian’s review published on Letterboxd:
"Everything is backwards now, like out there is the true world, and in here is the dream."
To be totally honest, I never gave Avatar a chance. I had never seen it before and I just shrugged it off because I felt like it was going to be a diverse film amongst everyone and I didn't want to get involved. After deciding to go through Cameron's filmography, I knew that I would have to cross this off my watchlist and after finally seeing it, I have to admit, its not so bad.
There's no denying just how simply beautiful the film is, I mean Cameron waited multiple years just to make it. The world of Pandora - a vast landscape of true and beautiful nature - is a stunning masterpiece of filmmaking that needs to be appreciated by everyone. Its a true beauty to see on screen and the way that Cameron blends the CGI world with the real thing is done to perfection. If you have a blu ray player, get Avatar because it doesn't deserve to be seen on a simple DVD.
Written and directed by Cameron, Avatar is a fine achievement in the film world and shows him at his height. Like I said above, the film is gorgeous. Cameron is able to direct this beautifully and the landscapes come alive right in front of you. The direction is some of his best, and the story fits along side it well. The story is pretty strong as its a unique tale and it does justice. It was cliché at times, but I could get over the slight parts that were cringe worthy.
The real problem I have with the film is just how long and sometimes boring it becomes. As the action is perfect, the rest just isn't. The talk of politics and why they're actually at Pandora just bored me and seeing how the film runs for 2 hours and 40 minutes, it feels like forever. The second half is easily stronger as the war between them is brutal and entertaining the same. My other problem is that, while it was great while it lasted, I have no feeling to watch this again, or at least in the next year or two. That's a huge problem to me because I wanted this to be grand and epic and it just feel kinda flat.
The performances are pretty much thrown all over the place. Sam Worthington as a typical past and his performance isn't much to go on about. When he's human he's boring, but when he's the Na'vi, he works fine. Zoe Saldana is pretty great. She works well as her Na'vi and her interactions with Worthington feel real. Sigourney Weaver is always a plus, and with Avatar its no different. She is such a badass here and the way her character is written works wonderfully. The supporting cast is great with Stephan Lang obviously taking the cake.
Overall, I could describe James Cameron's first film in a decade as fine with great visuals. I know I rated it four stars but I can't see myself bragging about anything else but just how beautiful it is. So with that said Avatar is a fine and passable movie that gets praised, and hated, far more than it deserves. I can see how some may be thrown off by the long runtime and the amount of blue people, but for what its worth, seeing this once and truly experiencing it is worth every penny. Avatar isn't one of Cameron's best, but its a worthy entry into his works.