The long wait of 13 years has finally ended and the Avatar franchise is back with its epic sequel ‘Avatar: The Way Of Water’ which is likely to quell all the excitement around the film. This James Cameron directorial is a visual spectacle that is evidently the stepping stone for the future of CGI and VFX. But, let us not forget, ‘visuals are not everything!’ You can’t please the yearning audience just by turning a blind eye towards the storyline, plot or good action sequences.
The movie does look surreal but let us not jump to conclusions here. Considering the film’s three-hour runtime, Cameron and other writers have managed to play with the audiences’ emotions however, at what cost?
The characters in ‘Avatar: The Way Of Water’ hold the depth and emotions required for the upcoming films. They effortlessly manage to help you connect with them and owing to their detailing, even the actors have bloomed quite well.
With a time skip of 13 years, Avatar 2 focuses on Jake Sully and his family who are initially part of the Na'vi clan, however, things take a turn for the worst. While a new fleet of humans returns to Pandora in the hunt for Jake, the Toruk Makto and his family of four are forced out to abandon the forests and seek a new clan. Jake and Neytiri's land is torn apart and the couple flee to the Metkayina Clan's water world, which disrupts tribal politics. There, Jake seeks sanctuary from the clan leader, Tonowari.
Now, here’s the catch! The first half of the film carefully details the culture, philosophy, and politics of the Na’vi and Metkayina Clan, but the director only seems to be embroiled in showcasing the visuals and nothing substantial is depicted until the last hour.
The entire first half of the film feels like ‘an introduction’, and the interval mark is brusque. The sloppy writing hardly gives anything to anticipate and the abrupt cutscenes pull you out of the sequences even when you desire to cherish the children’s innocence or tense moments in the film.
Honestly, there was a lot to expect from James Cameron, but this film just doesn't seem to be doing its magic. However, the director’s impactful storytelling manages to make the film a bit gullible as innocent romance and love for the siblings paint a colourful showpiece that is too adorable to be missed.
As the film advances towards the end, we finally manage to get a glimpse of Toruk Makto who appears to be lost trying to be a family man. Avatar 2 somehow makes up for all the soggy writing and the absence of thrill towards the end and we finally see Jake and Neytiri's epic action sequence to fight the enemy. The couple instantly transforms into an exemplar of an unconventional romance and there’s no stopping them. Jake and Neytiri are like literal ‘Beasts’ in a war zone, complimenting each other with their moves and one can hardly blink their eyes.
Given the heavy emotional drama, James Cameron focused on the close-ups of his lead characters and it definitely makes an impact.
It's simple common sense, if you spend 25 crores USD on visuals you might as well flaunt it!
Cameron's storytelling emerges flawed as he appears to have forgotten his targeted audience. One cannot overlook the fact that a majority of Avatar's fan-following has grown up and the director's focus on the visuals strongly suggests that the film caters the younger generation, not to mention it hardly tries to explore the romance between the characters. It would have been a worthy choice to depict a few other angles which would specifically entertain the old-timers now.
To everyone’s surprise Grace’s daughter, Kiri is adopted by Jake and Neytiri and she is blessed with powers that help her command the water animals! The film being fantasy fiction was totally acceptable, but it appears the director has taken a U-turn with his own logic by adding magical realism to the storyline which leaves a big question mark on our faces and we are forced to ask, ‘WHY?’!
In conclusion, the film surely isn’t a failure, maybe Cameron hoped it to be a ‘build up’ for the next and owing to that logic, the director did an impeccable job giving the world of Pandora a new layout to explore. No one knows what he exactly planned for!
‘Avatar: The Way Of Water’ does the job! It manages to entertain you, however, there are a lot of things that could have been done differently - the makers could have maybe, skipped Jake and Neytiri’s life in the forest by trimming the unnecessary sequences which would ultimately give room to add in more action sequences; or maybe they could have initiated the film with a different angle altogether.
Well, the arrow has already been unleashed and there’s no stopping it now. We can only hope that the world of Pandora flourishes in its next!
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