Sunday, January 10, 2010

We've All Seen Avatar

But we haven't all seen Avatar yet:

By giving us an alien species of natives who don’t fit into that conventional narrative, Mr. Cameron takes that out, forcing us to grapple with how we’d react if our society found itself lusting after the land or resources of a people even we believe to be more advanced than us in some ways — people whose communion with nature does enable them to survive better than we can in their environment rather than the opposite. This is a feat that can only be accomplished in a story about aliens, insofar as it is human nature for the victors in our armed conflicts to presume that their very civilization is objectively superior. Apparently it makes a lot of people very uncomfortable.

From Conor Friedersdorf's review and explicit defense.

Go see it again, then. Help it rightly beat Transformers.

(we are not shocked here at the Tympani Room to hear that David Denby, walking idiot, has completely missed the point)

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