Thursday, August 24, 2023
Mackay and Whitsunday Life
James Cameron’s Avatar: The Way of Water was, amongst what became a turning tide of popular opinion over the past 13 years, an unwelcome sequel. Audiences would certainly have eaten up a return to Pandora in, maybe, 2011. But after more than a decade, they weren’t begging for a new Avatar - but JC still thought he should deliver.
Has he delivered, though? Maybe. Certainly, he has in a few personal parameters.
What I mean to say is, the indisputable thing with this universe that Cameron has collated is that it’s a passion project where he’s aspiring to perfection not for audiences but for himself. For Cameron, his aspirations for cinema can be expressed in few key metrics: Is it visually stunning, is it pushing the technological envelope, is it splendiferous and winsome, awe-inspiring, and beautiful?
He believes that a simple, solid story surrounded by an exceptional shell of visual acuity and worldbuilding can still create something special. James Cameron is a master of ‘Movie Magic’ – the true blockbuster experience - where the audience’s jaw is plastered to the floor, and they’re saying to themselves: “I don’t know how he did that.” Therein lies the achievement behind his return to the Avatar universe – he has created something breathtaking and immensely enjoyable because of it. There is a beating heart to this world, like our own.
Avatar: Way of Water sees Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) return alongside Ney'tiri (Zoe Saldana), the pair having formed a family, trying to do everything they can to stay together by even moving across Pandora’s regions to a new aquatic land. We have the standard faire of action, but there’s also Avatar’s often heavy-handed message to protect our own natural world – one that Whitsunday audiences will be attuned to in its salience; The Great Barrier Reef may just be an excellent allegory for our own Way of Water.
Avatar: Way of Water arrives at the Bowen Summergarden Cinema today.
Avatar 2 is a cinematic achievement in its pure spectacle, and may very well capture the hearts of audiences worldwide