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Old 01-06-2010, 02:39 AM   #33 (permalink)
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Bucho's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Aotearoa
Posts: 3,883
Originally Posted by spooky View Post
Let's all be honest, the story was good, really good. Finely crafted, honed, sharpened by the story having been told several times before with great success. We've all seen it before, at least if we are over our twenties.

There's nothing wrong with that.
That's exactly right, the story itself is fine. The archetypes are solid, the emotional beats are in place and the re-tooling of it into a futuristic setting is pretty well worked.

But after this story being told a few times before why is Avatar a worse telling of that story? Why did Cameron stand on the shoulders of those giants and yet the telling of that well-worn story fall below them? Why are the characters who fit into the tropes we saw in Dances With Wolves and The Last Samurai and Pocahontas less compelling than the characters in those previous films?

The choice of a predictable story was smart, for the obvious reason that it had to be a proven popular tale that would maximize appeal to the widest possible audience, to give it a shot at making its money back (which it has already doubled easily, going past the billion in only three weeks). What was disappointing was that 210% effort went into the look of the thing and only 21% effort went into making that story really sing. It's a fun ride, it's just not a great film.
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