Saturday, August 7, 2010

The Last Airbender (review)

First of all, I must confess, I am a big fan of the cartoon series. It's one of those 'smart' cartoons with a good plot and really interesting characters. So I was eagerly anticipating the movie.

Title: The Last Airbender
Director: M. Night Shyamalan


Noah Ringer as Aang
Dev Patel as Prince Zuko
Nicola Peltz as Katara
Jackson Rathbone as Sokka
Shaun Toub as Uncle Iroh
Aasif Mandvi as Commander Zhao
Clif Curtis as Fire Lord Ozai

Basic plot:

Four nations previously lived in harmony with select people from each able to manipulate their own elements, Air, Water, Earth and Fire. All people are watched over by the Spirit World. Only the Avatar is able to control all 4 elements and communicate with the Spirits but 100 years ago he disappeared. Now, the Fire nation has declared war and seek to rule the world. Hope lies only in Aang, a young boy who is the Avatar.

What I liked about this movie

The cinematography was simply amazing. Spellbindingly beautiful. The special effects were also very good. They managed to stick to the essence of the original story quite well.

What I disliked about the movie

Basically, the acting sucked. Seriously. Everyone seemed so fake and hollow. Even in scenes where the Avatar and his supporters ignites a rebellion amongst the opressed people, it was not passionate and had no real resonance. The young actors delivered their lines so straightfowardly and even Dev Patel's potrayal of a conflicted youth struggling to prove his worth did not seem genuine. The aults fared no better as the villains in this story kept reciting their lines like they were in some bad stage play. Only Uncle Iroh played by Shaun Toub seemed comfortable with his role. I guess it was difficult for them because some things when said by an animated cartoon character will seem endearing but when said by an actor will just seem silly (plus they really need to work on their comedic timing).

Most of the fight scenes were beautifully choreographed but for some reason it did not have that impact - somewhat too smooth- and predictable.

A quote I liked from the movie

"I ran away but now I'm back." -Aang

Generally, being such a big fan of the cartoon series, I was disappointed with the movie. However, it was still quite aesthetically pleasing with many breathtaking scenes. Probably would have been better with stronger actors. Still worth watching but probably better if you were not a fan of the cartoon. Will probably still go and see the sequels (this is only Part 1 people!).

Rating: 3/5

*all pics Googled


Related Posts with Thumbnails