One of the top news stories of the last week is the record-breaking hit Avatar. James Cameron’s hit movie has surpassed another Cameron epic flick, Titanic, as the top-selling movie of all time.
The two movies seem to have nothing in common except for being really long, so I assume either the self-proclaimed King of the World is like Midas with movie scripts or he has made a pact with the devil. I shall guess the second.
As for Avatar, I was a fan. The movie has action, romance, and the most awkward sex scene since Michael Cera and Ellen Page copulated in Juno. Not to mention the CGI was amazing. I still haven’t seen the movie in 3D, but I hear it’s amazing as well. Hopefully more tastefully 3D than the various Disneyland 3D experiences with water squirted at you from the ceiling to represent bug snot or random BOO! moments of things shooting at you.
I read an article in The Escapist a few weeks ago–can’t find the link, as it was read on a Kindle and the website was a pain to navigate–talking about the obvious anti-imperialist and pro-environmentalist undertone that plays throughout the film. The author notes the controversy surrounding the leftist “agenda” and cries of racism, and wonders whether there has been a negative effect on viewership because of the controversy. Obviously, given the numbers, it hasn’t. The author also points to the Fascist undertones to 300, also fairly obvious to the average viewer.
So…does political undertone affect my willingness to watch and enjoy a movie? Short answer: no way.
While it is natural for us to connect films to our lives (or so I’d hope) and draw comparisons, I’m rarely offended by the “deeper meaning” of a film. I didn’t dislike 300 because of the Fascism. I was more focused on the nearly naked attractive men, awesome cinematography, and three slow-motion decapitations (even though I’d been promised four). I go to a movie to escape real life and submerge myself in a story–another world–for a few hours. I may disagree with the intent of the film–I’m certainly no fan of Fascism–but it won’t change the appeal of the movie, especially for action or sci-fi movies. It’s a work of fiction and has to be taken as such.
To quote my boyfriend, “Were there explosions? Then it was a good movie.”
In fact, that’s the sign of a good screenplay. The film has led viewers to relate to the protagonist, regardless of the protagonist’s convictions.
This is obviously not true in the case of documentaries. Conservatives will dislike and disagree with anything produced by Michael Moore. People who don’t believe in global warming won’t like An Inconvenient Truth. Liberals will dislike films by Glenn Beck and Ben Stein. Religious folk will hate Religulous. Hell, I’m an Atheist and I was bothered by some parts of Religulous. Though my unease was caused in part by the seemingly insane conviction of some religious people and militant groups.
But I suppose that’s the point of a documentary or docu-drama.
In short, a good movie is a good movie. Stop trying to ruin my fun.
And as an aside, for fans of awkward alien sex, rumors have spread indicating a possible extended sex scene on the DVD. I, for one, am intrigued. Not out of some perverse desire to see awkward sex–I once stumbled upon a Disney princess porn that, among other things, involved the Beast raping Belle, and would rather not repeat the experience–but out of pure scientific intrigue. Do the Na’vi have sexual organs (and intercourse) similar to human physiology or are their magic connector tails somehow involved? If it’s all about the tails, I’m more than a little creeped out. They also “communicate” with animals using their magic tails. Do the Na’vi practice some sort of bestiality? Would it be considered bestiality since the Na’vi are technically not human?
I find it fascinating. Can’t wait for the DVD.