Film: ‘Avatar’

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Set in the 22nd Century the story revolves around a battle between Earth and a small moon called Pandora, a “terrifyingly beautiful” place full of strange creatures and rich minerals. It’s the latter that Earth wants. Pandora is inhabited by the Na’vi three-meter tall humanoids with tails and blue skin that are peaceful unless attacked. A paralysed Marine named Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) is sent to Pandora to scout out the terrain for the military. Humans cannot breathe Pandoran air, so they genetically engineer human/Na’vi hybrids known as Avatars – living, breathing bodies that are controlled by a human ‘driver’ through a technology that links the driver’s mind to their Avatar body. Matters become complicated when Sully falls in love with a Na’vi princess and has to decide where his allegiances lie. Director James Cameron pushed technical effects to the limits in films like ‘Titanic’, ‘Aliens’ and ‘Terminator’. He does it again here. ‘Avatar’ is the most ambitious 3D film ever made. Previously 3D films were derided as flat with the occasional object flying at you. Not any more. The entire screen has a depth that makes the viewer feel as if they’re being pulled into the virtual world. The imagery is stunning and unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. The cast is superb (the film also stars Zoe Saldana and Sigourney Weaver). It’s being billed as the film event of 2009. We believe them.