Since it opened last week, James Cameron’s much-anticipated film “Avatar” has won praise from movie critics and been a juggernaut at the box office. But some who have seen the film say that it contains hidden messages that are anti-war, pro- environment, and perhaps even racist.
“Hidden” would mean that the messages are, well, hidden. There is nothing hidden about them at all.
I saw that headline and thought there was going to be vague Masonic symbolism or Satanic verses if you listened to the dialogue backwards or something. The pro-environment, anti-war (specifically the invasion of Iraq), and American Indian references are so in-your-face overt and obvious that I think they lose any real meaning. I guess I see the Indian thing a heck of a lot more than the African thing. But people tend to see what they want to see, so I’m sure some gays think the movie bashes gays and some handicapped people think it bashes them. Or women. Or Dodgers fans. Whoever.
The “hidden” anti-war messages wouldn’t have been any more obvious if one of the scientists wore a “No War for Unobtanium” T-shirt and the military leader gave a speech under a big “Mission Accomplished” banner. It also wouldn’t have been any less lame than the so-called “hidden” messages. Come on. They said they were going to use a “shock and awe” bombing campaign.
As stated earlier, I do think the good in the movie outweighs the bad. I saw it once and will see it again. I guess I’m not quite getting all the hysteria over it. It’s a Hollywood movie. Made by people with weirdly skewed perceptions about America, what it is, and what it should be. Duh. I mean, it wasn’t exactly coincidence that so many people saw Communists when they looked at Hollywood in the 50s.
Personally, though I enjoyed Avatar, I do think that the political commentary takes what I had once thought had the potential to be a great film and turns it into a cool cartoon.
UPDATE: Speaking of movies, someone has a list of the Best Movies of the Decade, but apparently it’s been hacked. If that’s the guy’s real list, it’s hilarious.