Dec 19, 2009

Avatar- A Visual Feast

If you haven't heard the hype about this movie, you've probably been living on an island somewhere. I saw it last night (opening night) and I have to say it's fantastic. For anyone with even the tiniest bit of love for sci-fi, you'll like this movie.

For the unitiated, here's a plot summary:
 "Avatar" is the story of a paralyzed ex-Marine who finds himself thrust into hostilities on an alien planet filled with exotic life forms. As an Avatar, a human mind in an alien body, he finds himself torn between two worlds, in a desperate fight for his own survival and that of the indigenous people.

As we watched the movie, we all commented how completely immersed we felt, and how easily we accepted the environment as a place that could actually exist. The landscape of Pandora, the alien world, is filled with lush visuals; glowing plants and insects, pristine forests and colorful creatures. The use of 3D  enhanced the feeling of 'being there',  leaves fluttered down to the ground as you looked up at the giant Hometree; glowing insects buzzed around the characters and off the screen toward you, as examples of the careful use of this technique. The scenes of CGI mixed with live action were incredibly seamless, as well.

The CGI of the characters was really the most amazing. Every subtle facial movement was captured, making it possible to read the emotions the characters were feeling even if they didn't speak. Most amazing to me was the avatar of the Sigourney Weaver character. It looks incredibly like her, yet alien.This movie radiates with color and life. Pandora is a real place by the end of the film. The 2 hours and 40 minutes went by so fast, and we all decided we would see it again, if only to enjoy the stunning visuals the second time around.

As an artist who's been in a love affair with color and creativity my entire life, this movie was a showstopper. I absolutely loved it. For anyone in the creative field, there's a whole lot to enjoy in this movie. Don't get me wrong, there's plenty of action to keep your big guys and little boys happy - but for me it was the dazzling creativity on display that will have me coming back for another look or three.

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