Friday, January 22, 2010

Na'vi me please

Never have I wanted to watch a movie twice so quickly after it ended. My bladder was bursting with soya bean and mineral water after 160 minutes in the cinema, and we had to grab a quick 7-Eleven sandwich lunch to go as we were catching the 1:20pm show, but I was sad when it all ended.

Yes, I'm talking about my first-ever 3D movie experience. Not just any movie. Avatar the movie. I told Wayne I want to catch it on the big screen again (maybe IMAX this time), or we'll just have to contend with 2D DVD versions in future.

It was a really good movie, and it helps that Wayne told me to focus on the action in the foreground (as opposed to the background), or I will risk getting a headache (there are even sites that tell you that you can go take a quick toilet break in the 50-something minute). Hell, I also put on my contact lenses as I was afraid the 3D specs would not fit nicely on my own specs - but the latter was huge and rather loose (i.e. not friendly for Asian/flat noses like mine), so I was rather conscious that it might slip down anytime as it's very light (it did not though, or should I say I was too focused on the movie to notice any discomfort).

Before I caught the movie, I just 'BAH'-ed it off as just another over-hyped thing, and even thought the Na'vis looked very scary, irritating, and that they were the bad people - haha!

I really like the action, the storyline (though detractors say it's uncannily a rip-off of Pocohontas - but I say it's like comparing a school play with a Hollywood bloackbuster as they are totally on different levels, almost an insult really to the greatest movie of all time). I even teared slightly when (Alert: Spoiler ahead - highlight below text to read only if you do not mind spoilers!):
-- When Neytiri's mother Mo'at (who is also the Omaticaya's spiritual leader) cried when she used a blade to free Jake Scully (who had 'betrayed' them by bringing in the enemies), and said something along the lines of 'If you are really with us, then help us...' as she pleaded with him against a background of fire and explosions killing her people.
-- When the 'corporate people' at Ground Zero shook their heads, and some ladies cried, at the sight of the bloodshed on the Na'vis when they saw it on screen.

(End of spoilers)

Mr. Cameron, no matter how rich he got from making Titanic (and thank goodness he did not retire happily into oblivion), has really 'upped the ante' (such a catchphrase for PR talk when launching new products/services, eh?...) in the details for the whole movie. He created a whole new language for the Na'vi's, created a whole new world in Pandora (and an extremely beautiful one at that, in spite of the different scary creatures), and check this out from Wired 2009 issue:
'With the language establishedd, Cameron set about naming everything on his alien planet. Every animal and plant recived a Na’vi, Latin and common names. As if that weren’t enough, Cameron hired Jodie Holt, chair of UC Riverside’s botany and plant sciences department, to write detailed scientific descriptions of the dozens of plants he had created. – He brought in more people, hiring an expert in astrophysics, a musical professor and an archeologist. They calculated Pandora’s atomospheric density and established a triparitle scale structre for the alien music. Eventually, a team of writers and editors compiled all this information into a 350-page manual dubbed Pandorapedia.'
Is this man dedicated to his craft or what (dabbling in 'sics and 'ists of fields that many of us, or at least I, have never even heard before)? *clap clap, kowtow, kowtow* Only thing I can say is - please don't let me wait for so many years for yet another epic to top this one...
P/S: If you're wondering why I am not as trigger-happy and posting photos of Rosabelle as I normally will, the reason is because ever since she discovered a whole new world of walking, she refuses to stay/sit still long enough for a photograph (there are only so many I can take of her in her high chair...). Drat...

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