Starring: Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana
Half-naked, over-sized Smurfs in the jungle chased by guys with massive guns – so this is what James Cameron has been up to since sinking the Titanic.
The director promised his latest would be a quantum leap in film-making and, visually, it is. Combining next-level motion-capture CGI with 3D technology, Avatar sucks you into a dazzling world and keeps you transfixed, despite a predictable storyline.
On planet Pandora, a mining corporation is at loggerheads with tree-hugging natives the Na’vi. To befriend their hosts, a team of scientists develop an ‘avatar’ system, which allows humans, including marine Jake Sully (Worthington), to download their consciousness into bodies that look like the tall, blue locals.
When Sully falls for Na’vi warrior Neytiri (Saldana), it spells trouble. The CGI serves the story pretty well, with the special effects gurus capturing the facial expressions of the actors who portray the native Na’vi.
Cameron overplays his hand, though, and the film’s last 30 minutes has too much weird chanting and one too many battle scenes. All-in-all an impressive, if flawed, return for the ‘King of the World’.
Good for: Those who like cutting-edge visuals.
PIERRE DE VILLIERS
Find out more about Australia’s latest Avatar action hero, Sam Worthington