Avatar: My Heart Remains Unobtained

Avatar is the story of a tribal indian princess named Pocahontas Naturey Neytiri who meets John Smith Jake Sullivan and has to teach him her tribe’s ways.  The guy she should have mated with, Kokoum Tsu’Tey (the one with the  mohawk), hates John Smith Jake Sullivan and would rather see him dead.  Plus the people John Smith Jake Sullivan works for are looking to obtain some gold unobtanium on the land Pocahontas’ Naturey’s tribe lives on.  Can John Smith Jake Sullivan learn to paint with all the colors of the wind see?

If you loved Avatar, this probably isn’t the review for you.  Just keep your brain turned off and click here to watch the Avatar trailer again to feel good.

There were a lot of things wrong with this movie, and Red Letter Media probably does it best in reviewing it, but I’ll still try and add my two cents if you can’t be bothered watching their review.

I’d forgotten Red Letter Media had already covered the ridiculous term “unobtanium” — probably because I didn’t know what it referred to because I saw the review before the film.  When the corporate bad guy said he was looking for ‘unobtain’ium I already found it difficult to take the movie seriously.

Secondly I found the over-the-top narrative monologues of the main character distracting to say the least.  It sounded like a hack version of Humphrey Bogart films from the 1940s.  The video logs helped to control the damage of this effect, but often it told us information that we already knew, like that Sigourney Weaver’s character was onto him, or just to help advance the plot when James Cameron was too lazy to do it in an original way.

Maybe James Cameron is trying to prove to the world that he’s super green by recycling plots?

Seriously, tell me how this isn’t an almost exactly copy of Pocahontas, Dances With Wolves–even Fern Gully.  Red Letter Media took it one step further and said it’s basically the same movie as Titanic.  I never would have thought about that, but they’re right.

Character A comes from world A, meets less civilized Character B who shows them something about life they never knew–and don’t forget the romance–then the people from world A end up destroying the less civilized people and Character A decides to abandon world A for Character B’s world’s ideals.

I was also insulted that he took the worst line of Titanic and made it the spiritual theme of the movie?  I see you.

I see Cameron mocking us for spending money on the same repackaged garbage.

In the end, I lost several hours of my life I’ll never get back, but I think the lesson has been learned.  If James Cameron is attached to the project, pass it by.  And watch the Red Letter Media review, seriously.  It does it far more justice than I ever could.

The Avatar Challenge

Once upon a time people challenged my dislike for Twilight because I hadn’t read the book.  It took me a while to shove enough of my complete disdain for what I was about to venture into, and still took me a month to read the first book of the Twilight series.  (I read Harry Potter Book 7 in less than 8 hours, so it wasn’t because I was a slow reader).

It was a lot more awful than I had anticipated.  I admit, I was planning to make fun of it in comic style later, but well, when you’re not paid to do it for a living finding the time… etc., etc.

Anyways, the same challenge has been laid before me now with James Cameron’s Avatar.  Hearing from most friends that while it had some pretty pictures, it generally is a boring rehash of Fern Gully, Dances With Wolves, and Titanic elements all in just under three hours.  (A reason I never bothered with King Kong.  I could watch 2 movies in the same amount of time I probably like better.)

I also recently watched a fairly scathing review from Red Letter Media, whom I completely agreed with on the two Star Wars reviews he’s posted, and have little reason to distrust his opinion on Avatar.  (Except he didn’t like the new Star Trek movie, but I suppose Star Trek is more polarizing when it comes to a reboot).

Anyways, I guess I’m going to trudge through Avatar, hopefully in one sitting.  I may take an intermission.  I plan to post the review, whether scathing or pleasantly surprised here.  Then hopefully those of you who don’t want to bother can say, “Hey, Dee thought the movie was going to suck and it did.”  Or grudgingly, “Well, I guess I’ll have to watch it.”

I know, my view of the movie is tainted, but you can thank the tired rantings of the global warming fanatic agenda–and I’ve heard James Cameron is one of the biggest tree huggers around–but I suppose time will tell.

Comic-Con: Day Two (July 25)

11:00-12:00 Print The Legend: Mike Grell and Mark Ryan

I went to this forum to make sure I was in for Samurai Girl later, and although they had some interesting stories to tell, I wish I’d gone to Powerpuff Girls 10th Anniversary and Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends. Anyways, they’ve got a website of free daily comics and are currently working on their new graphic novel, The Pilgrim. Anyways, there wasn’t much of anything for concept art or anything at the forum, but his art is interesting, so I’ll probably check it out.

?? (??), ?? (?? aka Samura Girl), and ?? (??)

Cast members: Brendan Fehr (Jake Stanton), Jamie Chung (Heaven aka Samurai Girl), and Stacy Keibler (Karen)

12:00-1:00 ABC Family: Samurai Girl

This is just going to be a miniseries for now, three days of 2 hour programs on ABC Family. The preview looked sort of interesting, but having studied a little martial arts myself, at least from the preview her sword handling looked weak. Granted, a lot of it was from the training stages, but I guess it also bugs that instead of an Asian guy teaching her the sword (like in the books) it’s some random white dude who’s supposed to be an ex-Yakuza. *sigh*

To be quite honest it was a little disappointing, and I’ll probably check it out when it comes to Netflix or watch it online.

Eepy Bird creators

Eepy Bird creators

What was a little entertaining was to find out the guys from Eepybird.com (the diet coke and mentos bellagio fountainesque show) are doing another video, this time with stickie notes. They showed a little preview of it, and I don’t know that I’d watch ABC Family that night just for that, but I’m sure it’ll be another fun internet video to pass around. (Said preview available on their website).

1:45-2:45 Ghostbusters: The Video Game

After Samurai Girl I headed over to check out this awesome upcoming game, but very sadly…. canceled. 😦

1:45-2:45 Entertainment Weekly’s The Visionaries: Showrunners

So with nothing better to do, and since I wanted to get in for forums later, I headed over to room 6CDEF. The time in my head must have been messed up, because for some reason I thought this was already the World of Warcraft panel. It was a pleasant surprise to realize what it truly was (and despite being wrapped around the other side of the room, I got in). The Comic-Con guide description:

Carlton Cuse (Lost), Damon Lindelof (Lost), Josh Schwartz (Chuck, Gossip Girl), Bryan Fuller (Pushing Daisies), and Josh Friedman (Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles) are the television producers who are changing the face of television with deeply immersive entertainments marked by distinctive, cutting edge storytelling. They have also been at the forefront of bringing “genre programming” or “cult TV” to the mainstream. Prepare for a candid conversation about creative integrity in a commercial medium and the future of broadcast TV in an increasingly digital world. Spoiler Alert! Upcoming plot developments may be teased. Moderated by Entertainment Weekly senior writer Jeff Jensen.

It was a lot of fun to hear the creators talk about where they got their ideas, but most of them spouted plentiful amounts of thanks to fans. (Yay to us!) Of course, they wouldn’t disclose where the island was on Lost they were lost on–though they did ask fans where they thought a good place for the island to be would be. 😉

I’m also a Bryan Fuller fan, and one fan asked him why he went from basically the darkness and death of Dead Like Me to a surreal bubblegum happy world of Pushing Daisies. He said the idea for Pushing Daisies occurred to him while producing Dead Like Me. He thought a character who could bring people back to life might be interesting in kind of messing up George’s job. When asked if George might do a cross over on Pushing Daisies, he said he thought it would be interesting, but wanted to keep his piemaker the only one with special powers for now.

3:00-4:00 World of Warcraft

There wasn’t a lot of talk about online gaming–just a brief mention of the dark knights and upcoming expansion. Mostly this forum was about the other games (board games or something) and some sweet looking collector’s figures. They’ve decided to do a WOW monsters focus, and included were murlocs (sp?), hydras, the swamp elementals (can’t remember the name), and a few mini-bosses. So if you’re into that sort of stuff, look forward to that.

Other than that, just a pass the time forum.

4:15-5:15 Spotlight on Jim Butcher

I have to shamefully admit, I didn’t have any idea who Jim Butcher was prior to the forum, though the Dresden name did ring a bell. After hearing him talk, I’m definitely going to check out the Dresden Files series, which is about a wizard who investigates strange happenings in Chicago. I’m probably not doing this any sort of justice, but he kept me entertained for the hour of his forum and piqued my interest, so I’ll check them out.

On the TV show running currently on Sci-Fi he said he wasn’t really sure about the look of the guy they cast for Harry, but he thinks he plays Harry well. Anyone seen the show? That might be worth a look into as well.

Howard Gordon, Kiefer Sutherland, and Jon Cassar

Howard Gordon (producer), Kiefer Sutherland (Jack Bauer), and Jon Cassar (director)

5:30-6:30 24

This was really the one I was waiting for. It’s kind of strange when you get to see the actors in person, surrealistic. You know them so well, but they don’t know you. It’s weird…

Anyways, this may contain some spoiling info, so you may want to scroll down. There’s a prequel series coming in November 2008, starting off with Jack in Africa trying to save kids from being taken into basically rebel armies. It addresses the disturbing issues of kids being used in war and given weapons and told to fight (I mean KIDS, not like 18 yr olds, like 13 and under kids).

Carlos Bernard, Harold ???

Carlos Bernard (Tony Almeda), Howard Gordon

Also present at the forum was Carlos Bernard, which excited me, because Tony is one of my favorite characters. But what does that mean? Yep, not really dead–again. 😉 I guess in season seven, Tony starts out “evil” but Jack supposedly straightens him out. Carlos was a great addition to the forum and every time they mentioned possibly killing off Tony again, he stood up and laid down bills in front of the writer (aka bribing to keep him on the show) 😉

Kiefer was great. He thanked the fans repeatedly, and is basically one of the nicest guys you could ever meet. He tried to stay as long as he could, even with event personal trying to move them out for the next panel, to give everyone an autograph that he could. He also had some cool things to say about fans. Now, look….. the video quality isn’t great, it was rushed to capture and is at cell phone size basically, but it’s what he says that matters. So check it out.

just another fun Kiefer shot

just another fun Kiefer shot

I’m definitely looking forward (as I’m sure we all were back early on this year) for season seven. A couple of my favorite Kiefer moments from the forum was when a fan asked about when Jack ate or went to the bathroom, etc. Kiefer and the writers laughed and Kiefer said they try to start up scenes in Washington with him coming out of the bathroom, etc., to try and address that.

Another fan said I’ve noticed that you say “da**it” a lot, why is that? Kiefer said since TV is a bit limiting, he came to the point where that was the best word for him to use to express his frustration. The fan asked him if he’d say “da**it Cameron” and of course, Kiefer obliged in full Jack Bauer glory. 🙂 Luv the Kief!

6:30-7:15 Prison Break

I haven’t seen much of this show yet (it’s on the list) so I used the bathroom, but when I came back I saw most of the preview for the upcoming season and I guess Sara’s alive. Hope that comes as happy news to the faithful followers. Wentworth wasn’t there, sadly, though Dominic was (and he spent most of his time texting…) Anyhow, I’m sure the new season will please those who follow the show.

Avatar creators Bryan and Michael, and some Nick exec

Avatar creators Bryan and Michael, and some Nick exec

7:30-9:15 Nickelodeon Avatar: Sozin’s Comet

Basically we watched the last 2 episodes/parts of the Sozin’s Comet bunch. They confirmed that Book 3 was the LAST SEASON so there will be NO Book 4:Air–unless you count the little fan art presentation they put together. 😉 It was called Book 4: Air – The Forbidden Love, and had Katara and Zuko make out for awhile until they break up and Aang and Katara get back together. 😉

Avatar fans in costume

Avatar fans in costume

The fans were practically rabbid, but they did have some great costumes. I think the Appa costume (if you can see it) won first place. They had a great cross-dressing Sokka (when he dressed like the Kyoshi warriors), but he got nothing. 😦 Then they showed some fan art, but they cycled through it quickly, I was able to snap a couple good ones. The winners should be posted at Nick.com.

Samurai Champloo

hint: Samurai Champloo

A fan did ask about an Avatar soundtrack, which the creators said they were working on, but no official release date or even unofficial. *sigh* Hopefully it will come out in the very near future. They also said they’re very excited about the upcoming live-action films. Even though I’m not excited about M. Night directing them, if the creators are excited, hopefully it will turn out well. Hooray for Avatar anyhow. Remember,Book 3 is out in September.

10:45-12:00 Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog

I wanted to go to this, but unfortunately San Diego public trans shuts down around midnight, and I didn’t want to pay taxi fare, so I didn’t make it. But I did watch the three episodes with a friend who had them, and I highly recommend them to anyone but especially those out there in the Joss Whedonverse.

Joss and his bros basically decided they weren’t going to let the studios tell them when they could and couldn’t make something, so they made a web series about a villain named Dr. Horrible–a musical series. Don’t let that put you off though, the music is great and adds to the episodes delightfully. A soundtrack and fourth episode is for a fact upcoming. Check them out via download from iTunes, or you can watch them for free for now here.

END OF DAY

Tired and looking forward to the Heroes panel in the morning, I headed to bed early to get in line for the panel (which started at 10:30 am in the largest room) by 9 o’clock. Did I make it? Only the next day will tell.

And no, I didn't.