By David Zou
When James Cameron’s Avatar was released at the end of 2009, audiences were smitten. With its high-tech 3D and its use of cutting-edge technology, Avatar was awesome to look at. It made $77 million in its first weekend of release and eventually made an astounding $760 million domestically (and $2.7 BILLION dollars worldwide). Critics were impressed as well: Avatar has a 83% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes (very good) and an aggregate score of 83 on Metacritic (even better). For reference, Alfonso Cuaron’s Children of Men has a score of 84 on Metacritic and Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight earned an 82.
Avatar was so well-received that it quickly became the odds-on favorite to win the Academy Award for Best Picture at the 2010 awards show. When one watches Avatar, it is immediately evident the amount of craft and vision that went into producing it. This is no surprise, coming from the man who helmed Terminator 2: Judgment Day, The Abyss, Aliens, and Titanic (itself a Best Picture winner). James Cameron knows how to make gorgeous and nail-biting films that the public loves. To take anything away from him would be silly–a waste of time.
That being said, Avatar’s mind-boggling success had less to do with that masterful filmmaking and more to do with its blockbuster characteristics. At the 2010 Academy Awards, Kathryn Bigelow’s The Hurt Locker took home the Best Picture prize (as well as Best Director for Bigelow) while Avatar took home statues for Best Cinematography, Best Visual Effects, and Best Art Direction (acknowledging the beauty and craft of the movie but not so much its resonance).
For most of 2010, Avatar was spoken of as one of the possible best films ever made. However, as the AMPAS recognized, Avatar is less an incredible picture and more a well-made, slick, → continue…
From:: Taste Of Cinema