How to fall in love with a movie

Scifipop December 12, 2011 0

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This is an excellent article from a member at, Teejay. This was written basically in response to all of the “Avatar blues” hoopla during the peak of James Cameron’s Avatar popularity.

Fans from various Avatar fan sites, including, posted their feelings of despair and depression with the realization that Pandora and the world of Avatar did not exist.

The general public seemed to have come down hard on mocking Avatar fans, all the while we hear Soccer fans trampling each other, Oakland Raider fans fighting and shooting each other, and gaming fans stuck in their room for days pretending to be a Halo soldier. Yet, Avatar fans were the crazy ones getting all depressed over a world that did not exist.

Here’s TeeJay’s light touch on why she is an Avatar fan, and fan of movies in general. Thanks to TeeJay for allowing me to post this.


What would you think if someone told you he’s watched the same movie in the theater ten times over a period of two months? You’d think that person was just a little crazy, wouldn’t you? Well, you may be right, but that person could also be your next door neighbor or your colleague in the cubicle across from you.

I am that person too, and I feel no shame in admitting it. A lot of people have asked me the simple question why. Why would I spend more than three times the money that the Blu-ray will cost on watching this movie in theaters? I wish I had a simple answer.

Undoubtedly, the biggest part of it is the imagery of the universe that James Cameron has created. There is a certain mesmerizing, intoxicating quality to it, especially when you watch it in 3D. You can get lost in that world, and there is always something new to discover. The details inside that universe are just stunningly intricate, and you can tell that a lot of thought and love went into the process of creating the planet Pandora. It may just be the world that humankind has always dreamed would exist somewhere out there in space, say, on a distant moon 4.37 light years from earth.

However, it is not only the creation of the visual world of Pandora that we need to give James Cameron credit for, it’s the whole package that comes with it. What we see is not merely a painted canvas that he shares with the audience. It’s a whole culture, a whole universe. There are cultural aspects of the Na’vi that the movie doesn’t expand on, but that are there—in the background—nevertheless. And if you’re as infatuated with the movie as I am, you want to read about them in the “Activist’s Survival Guide to Pandora” afterwards. The Na’vi speak a language that was invented by linguistic professor Paul Frommer. A language that isn’t just a few fictional words put one behind the other, it’s a whole linguistic concept that has fixed grammatical rules and guidelines. It’s a language you can learn and speak, should you so desire. Fans are already doing so.

Fascinating to watch is also the journey that our main character, Jake, embarks on. When we first meet him, he’s this bitter, jaded man who has nothing left to live for. It’s intriguing to see him change from the person he was on earth to becoming the Omaticaya clan leader who finds his single thing worth fighting for and a whole new world to care about. The people he meets along the way are just as much a part of that mosaic, which in the end forms the big picture that James Cameron put together in his glorious, almost three hour film.

And I’m not only talking about Jake’s human companions, there is also the enchanting, exotic tribe of blue humanoids that we get to meet. A people who care about their planet and don’t carelessly let it wither away. A people so in tune with their fellow beings that they can form a neural bond with them. Isn’t that just a beautiful idea? I think if we looked at the world with our eyes just a little more open, we could achieve so much more. It’s a big part of what draws people back into the movie theaters for repeat viewings. It may be a compensation of sorts, to watch what you want but can’t have.

I think what it boils down to in the end is this simple question: Have you ever loved a movie or a TV show or even a book so much that you wanted to be a part of it, to live in it, to perhaps be one of the characters in it? If you can answer this question with yes, then you know why—if I’d be living in the 24th century Star Trek universe—I would spend all my spare time running holodeck simulations of planet Pandora. But since we’re not quite there yet, going back to the theater to escape to Pandora’s beautiful universe is the next best thing there is.

written by TeeJay

March 2010


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