The hidden meaning of James Cameron’s AVATAR
by Joel Sattler with a postscript by Michael Sattler
The movie AVATAR is a triumph of moviemaking.
As cinematography, it rates a 10 on the scale of 10. It is in the first rank of Science Fiction films such as The Matrix, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Star Wars: A New Hope, The Day the Earth Stood Still, The Time Machine, Metropolis, Alien, Bladerunner, The War of the Worlds, Le Voyage Dans la Lune and King Kong. All of these films represented great advancements in the science of filmmaking, and the extension of our vision, and the expansion of our minds.
As far as plot, theme, characterizations, acting….well, all very competent, even excellent in places, but no big deal. It’s what we’ve come to expect from even routine moviemaking. No complaints, really, except that what goes in the ear doesn’t measure up to the thrill of what goes in the eye.
So, what is it about?
Ostensibly, it’s just another variation of the colored man rescued by the enlightened hero white man. We’ve seen that in Lawrence of Arabia, Mississippi Burning, Dances With Wolves, and hundreds of other such.
But, to me, there is an added element. Something that was just not possible before.
At the end of Avatar, the hero becomes one of the indigenous people: not just an honorary member of the tribe.
The Avatar becomes his reality.
Would you make that choice?
The kids of today are playing video games 100 hours a week or more. They are overweight, underexercised, maladjusted, miseducated, delusional nerds. If they had a choice, would they choose to live in the Call of Duty world? Where they could be strong, lethal and immortal? Where they could be heroes?
In Avatar, the hero’s choice is between living as a cripple and a traitor to the human race, or as a supercat among the cat-people flying the baddest ass of the badass pterodactyls.
Is this the future?
Would you choose to live in the CGI world, young and healthy and sexy, when you have become old and decrepit and infirm? Would you give up your humanity to be virile and strong when you have lost everything?
Laugh while you can, monkey boy…..
Postscript from Michael Sattler:
AVATAR is a movie of multiple meanings, some can be taken as good, or bad, but the fact remains how disconnected from reality we have truly become. Some people have gone to the point where they actually believe that the fake world can become real to them if they try hard enough. And this isn’t just true for children; this is true for most of the modern population. And example of such is the game “World of Warcraft” which has accumulated over 6 million players world wide.