Posts Tagged ‘James Cameron’

Haiku Review: ‘Avatar’

April 26, 2010

Lifting Fog continues its (belated) Academy Awards countdown roundup today with a review of another Best Picture nominee (…loser): HMFIC James Cameron’s ‘Avatar.’ “We see you,” jerks!

Story? …Just enough.
But who cares! Special effects
Will make you shit bricks

So is it Star Wars
For a new generation?
I mean kind of, but…

Say what you will about G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, but 2009 was a pretty great year for movies. And across the board, too: boundary-pushing sci-fi in District 9; the (hilarious!) revisionist history of Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds. The Hurt Locker, Precious, Watchmen, Up. (500) DAYS OF SUMMER?!? Really just one of the more thoroughly satisfying — and amazingly diverse — array of films assembled in recent memory. We’re spoiled. But one movie unquestionably stands out even in that accomplished crowd, a movie that pushed the technological edge of filmmaking farther than it’s ever gone and silenced critics (…including me) who had written it off as “that Ferngully sequel” months before its release. The movie in question, of course, is Avatar, directed by a guy so ego-maniacal even his baseball cap seems to YELL at you. And while the story isn’t much, there’s no denying one thing: it sure looks great in blue.

Now hop into that Avatar-linking neuro-chamber and let’s GO.

Obligatory Post-Oscars Post 2010

March 8, 2010

So the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences REALLY hates James Cameron. Not that The Hurt Locker didn’t deserve to clean up — it did in a big bad way — but one can’t help but look at the winners of categories like Sound Mixing or even Original Screenplay (which Cameron wasn’t nominated for, of course, but a vote for The Hurt Locker was a vote AGAINST Avatar) and not imagine the director’s peers flipping him off as they mail in their ballots. “Who’s Avatarded now?” laughs one Academy member to himself. “King of the world?” asks another. “You’re barely a prince!” And so on with the funny and original puns. For a lot of Hollywood, James Cameron is as easy to hate as a scum-sucking Republican!

But petulant dismissal of a STAGGERING CINEMATIC ACHIEVEMENT aside, the Academy did manage to do one thing right last night: naming Kathryn Bigelow Best Director, the first woman to win the trophy in the ceremony’s 82 years. You’re King Queen of the World, Kathryn! And LONG OVERDUE!

Photo from The New York Times

Not even Babs presenting the award (or Oprah’s wholly inappropriate appearance ten minutes earlier, but that’s an entirely different post…) could ruin what was an undeniably special and important moment in Oscar history. It meant too much; the victory was practically cosmic. And we’ve finally arrived, one hopes, at the beginning of a label-less era of film direction — one where “female” is no longer synonymous with “Nancy Meyers” (and “terrible”), but simply means that the person running the show…happens to have lady-parts. Equality, baby.