James Cameron’s Avatar is simply filled with so much visual splendour, it is easy for us to ignore the storyline. We have heard all the complaints that Avatar is simply a rip off of Pocahontas, with the Native American-like natives, except that they are huge and have blue skin color. The bad guys are once again white men with superior firepower and technological advancement. This time, one of the invaders also falls in love with a native girl. Critics argued that Avatar is filled with stilted dialogues and bad screenwriting, regardless of the amazing visuals. Even so, included with how Cameron directed Titanic, he is clearly a brilliant individual in the modern pop culture. Cameron is a skilled individual in putting all elements together to produce amazing results.
Like Titanic, Avatar also shows thousands of individuals both the natives and the invaders in the maws of death. Avatar is set a grand setting of warfare and it’s easy, with plenty of explosions, gunfire and death. With all its elements, Avatar has a storyline that is difficult to weave correctly and it continues to obtain worldwide popular appeal. It’s probably true that Avatar is essentially based on Pocahontas, but with some alterations, enough sci-fi elements and plenty of explosions, it becomes really interesting. It is often sad to see many majestic native warriors getting slaughtered by the diminutive beings, known as human. Even if they end up winning the war, they still suffer from inevitable destruction. By repelling the invaders, the film shows that the harmony in nature will always be re-established.
An important foundation is a blockbuster is that the film should end happily and people get what they want to see. Regardless of the amount of special effects, story is still an important factor. Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter series are based on excellent books, which are able to stay consistent with the original storyline, regardless of the overall simplification. Just like some places in the Middle Earth, Na’vi is also a place with lush surrounding that emphasizes on the plants and nature. The audience will get emotional and almost sensual understanding on many things related to the planet Na’vi. The place has different qualities of an utopian world, despite the lack of sophisticated technology, like what’s shown on some cyber-punk films. In such a wonderful surrounding, flying is a crucial elements, something that’s also applied in LOTR and Harry Potter.
As a result, we have a great orchestration of flight, love and dances of death amidst the gunfire and explosions. Watching the special effect alone is already the admission price that people pay in theatres. The Tree of Souls becomes the focal point of the overall battle, which is threatened by the techno-fascist human. Unlike what’s happen in our reality, the film doesn’t end in a tragedy and the superior invaders are repelled, while superior Europeans essentially wiped out the rich culture throughout the American continent. Although Avatar relies heavily on captivating visuals, Cameron plays it safe by saying in an interview that the future of film industry is still on storytelling.