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7.06.2010

The Last Airbender


PJVs QUICKIE POV: I was prepared for disappointment on this one. I saw it on Saturday, time enough for the bad reviews to come flooding in, so actually I believe that saved me from walking out of the theater. My expectations were low, so entertain it did. If you ignore the incredibly bad acting, plot holes and just marvel at some of the special effects, well....you might not regret paying the $10 as much. I'm so glad I didn't watch the cartoons first...so glad. I probably would have cried.

REVIEW: In a world where elementals are revered and taught to harness the power of the four elements, the planet has split into four nations: Earth, Air, Water, Fire. The is only one being that can control all of the elements, The Avatar (not blue). He can commune with the spirit world and works to keep peace on the planet and the nations happy. The problem is he disappeared like 100 years ago - and now the Fire Nation has taken on a mission to take over the entire planet.

When two teens from the Southern Water Nation stumble upon a child frozen under the ice - they couldn't know that it is The Avatar, but their enemies quickly realize that he just might be what they are looking for. In a quickly plotted rescue, the save Ang (avatar) and head North to find the Water Benders that will continue Ang's education, because he only knows how to Air Bend.  Along the way they just might start a revolution and ultimately a war.

I really don't know what M. Night was thinking on this one. First, the graphics, there was nothing redeeming about them, yes some of the effects were cool, but nothing I haven't seen before. The riding creature was reminiscent of The Neverending Story, and the water columns had me having flasbacks to Abyss. The hand movements and Tai Chi like dances the characters did were interesting and I thought pretty, but correct me if I'm wrong, it seemed that each movement was supposed to be precise, each gesture and foot placement would direct the air or water. So...when Katara and Ang are practicing their water bending they could have at least had their movements together.

Then the acting. Oh my. I think M. Night was trying to get them to emulate the anime cartoons... it was constant big eye, no blinking, emotional facial close ups.  No ones accents matched. There were old wizened Chinese men that spoke with an American accent, and young asian women that had Chinese accents. Then Katara and Sokka were what I assumed an Eskimo like clan - because all of the other people in the clan looked rather Native American/Eskimo esque, well everyone except them.

I actually was very happy to see Jackson Rathborn in a non Cullen roll, and his acting was better than the others, well a smidge better. I just didn't get that big eye thing they made them do!

Overall - your seven year old boy will LOVE it. You on the other hand, might find it a bit lacking.

RECOMMENDATIONS: It was somewhere in between Harry Potter and Narnia - if you are a fan of those, don't expect it to be up to par, but you might enjoy.






Poor Alice! How could she compete with a white haired princess?



19 comments:

Dren said...

Ok I'm with you 50/50 on this one. I'm a fan of the cartoon and hearing all the bad reviews I though ... crap another dud. BUT I was surprised that I actually liked it. It's not worth seeing in 3D. But would have certainly benefited from IMAX viewing. I hope M. Knight takes all the feedback from this movie and takes Book 2 - Earthbender to the next level. Oh and yeah my 6 year old can't stop talking about it ROFL.

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

O I am a fan of both of those. Sounds like this one is definitely for me!

Tiger Holland said...

*nods* Yep, my 7-yr-old bro loved it. I, on the other hand, hadn't read the reviews, and was very, very bowled over by the bad acting and plot holes.

Jackson was perhaps the best actor in the movie, but even that couldn't redeem it.

Mary not so Contrary said...

My little brother who is ten years younger then me used to make me watch the cartoon with him. Hes always been a big fan of the show. He went and saw it and called me after and said that if he wasn't such a "manly man" (hes 17) he would have cried thats how bad it was. I think I'll save myself the $10. Thanks for reviewing it.

Jana said...

You know, I did watch the cartoons, a lot, being the mother of two young boys and I think that actually helped me with the movie. It moved fast, but I recognized a lot of scenes from the cartoons in the movie and was glad. I mean, it is a good cartoon, but, it is a cartoon made for kids. And the movie was so visually stunning! I didn't hate it at all and I do hope they make the other chapters.

kimscarecrow said...

Haha Avatar was so not good it was kind of hilarious. My friends and I went to go see it because we liked the cartoon, but wow they messed up some things. Ahhh wow.

Missie said...

Oh noes! My little cousins (a boy and a girl) who are addicted to the cartoon have been begging me to take them to see this movie! Even though I'm not really a fan of M. Night (maybe I just don't get his 'creative genius'), I was looking forward to this movie because of Jackson, but EKE! Now I'm not so sure. LOL!

Thanks for the honest review.

Sandy said...

Oh dear I've already had low expectations ever since I heard they were making an Airbender movie and now they are lower (which is probably very good!), I'm a big fan of the cartoons -hopes not to cry-.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

So far the reviews and comments from actual moviegoers have sounded more entertaining.

Anonymous said...

I want to watch this movie really bad.
While I wait, I've found another movie that might help me kill some time.
It's called The Incubus and it's about an alternative kind of vampire that instead of sucking out one's blood, it sucks one's soul and it feeds off of human emotion.
It's very good! Worth checking out.


http://bit.ly/ahKeh7

hotcha12 said...

I HEARD IT SUCKED AND BEING ON DISABILITY I'LL JUST RENT IT, I ALSO SAW THE BOOK OF ELI SCORED VERY LOW BUT I BOUGHT IT AND WATCHED THREE TIMES!!

Monica said...

I watched it too. I did see the cartoons and I actually liked the movie. They changed um...a few things but as a movie it was entertaining and I was also glad to gaze at Jackson (don't know his real name) in a different movie *sigh*

Marie said...

I've heard SO many bad reviews for this movie, but the more bad reviews I read, the more I wanna see it! Plus it would be nice to see the actors of Twilight in films other than Twilight!

Luvsdemons666 said...

I did like reading your review but I would have to disagree with you about it being bad. If you don't mind reading my review on it, you here:

http://luvstoreadpararomance.blogspot.com/2010/07/avatar-last-airbender-review.html (If it's not alright to post this link, just delete it then)

MamaTink said...

We did watch the cartoon when it was out, which was the reason we went to see the movie. I think the movie stuck to the original storyline very well. The actors held true to the personalities in the cartoon, so they should be given a little slack, given it was a cartoon to begin with. We enjoyed it greatly!

Lily Child said...

I haven't seen the cartoon, nor did I really have any idea what I was walking into. I think that's what saved me on this. Overall, I rather enjoyed it. I agree on the acting, however. Definitely sub-par. Interesting review! :)

Alyssa Kirk @ Teens Read and Write said...

This is disappointing for those that love the show. Too bad!

Wings said...

oh bum...i LOVE that show so much!!!

i was so excited for the movie!

I knew the accents were off but the acting doesn't sound good.

Midnight Bloom said...

The special effects were really cool but I wasn't impressed that they couldn't even pronounce the names right for some of the characters. Some of the acting and the whole dramatic lines like 'It's your destiny!' made me laugh for some reason too. I still think the show was a lot better... in fact, I own every episode! :)

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