A Reflection on Avatar: Way of the Water

I want to emphasize that this movie exceeded all expectations of even a long-time fan like me. Some people expected this movie to be a classic sequel flop, but it honestly fulfills all the critic reviews you will see. Unlike most movies that claim to be “the movie of the year,” Avatar’s opening weekend income of $134 million places it on track to join its parent movie on the world’s top charts.

The few opening minutes encapsulate the beauty of a growing family and adaptation out of need. We are served a flash of blue bliss as the characters once left in the turmoil of the first movie live out healthy lives. The movie allows us to relish in the nostalgic jungle before arriving at the highly anticipated water setting. 

Every fish’s fin tip, the dancing light’s delicacy and every pore on every creature floats the audience off their seats in immersion into the screen. This movie cost around $350 million to bring to life. Avatar’s team even developed entirely new systems of filming underwater. The resulting fluid interactions on screen make it easy to picture in real life, but that is exactly what makes it so hard to believe that what you are seeing was not actually filmed on another planet. It is amazing what the artists working on this series have created. Endless days have been poured onto this project, and their credit is due. Weirdly, even the end-credit animations made me want to see it through to the last frame. 

Every fan of the movies and dreamer of the mystical moon Pandora has never thought to place themselves in this world trying to raise a family. And despite the alluring explosions and warcries, I found the emotional sincerity the most surprising. As the returning main character Jake Sully reflects on the duties of a father, I lost myself in sympathy and the realization that this movie left me with. There are few movies that actually inspire change in a person. After watching it, I felt I had underappreciated the people in my life, which made the crying scenes so much more impactful. James Cameron has outstandingly topped a legendary movie with an effect sure to spark something within everyone.