The plot of the movie “Avatar 2” unfolds on the same satellite Pandora, as in the first part. Former marine Jake Sully finally merged with the body of the avatar of the Na’vi people and is now considered the hero of Pandora. Humanity has managed to chase him off the satellite, but his return with colonizing ambitions is only a matter of time.
However, Jake, together with his wife Neytiri, managed to live quietly for a few years and have children. So in the new confrontation between the Na’vi and humans, Sally will have to answer for all her relatives and approach all issues more carefully, so as not to set anyone up.
The first part of Avatar is very hard to call a movie with a good story. Yes, it has a thoughtful and interesting world, but it is almost in no way supported by charming characters. After watching it, only the beauty of Pandora remains in the memory, but not the characters that moved the plot. Therefore, with the second part of “Avatar” Cameron needed to correct this flaw.
And the director succeeded. Not without questions, of course, but the script of “Avatar: Path of Water” can already be called good without modesty and shyness. It has adequate development of heroes and villains, interesting conflicts and unexpected discoveries. To follow the plot is pleasant, the characters differ from each other at the level of character and behavioral traits, so they are not weathered out of consciousness immediately after the end of the credits.
The bulk of the story centers on Jake and Neytiri’s children. It’s a logical move, considering that in the 13 years since the first Avatar was released, many viewers probably now have children of their own. On the one hand, the new plot emphases allow the age-old conflict between parents and children to be examined from an interesting angle, bringing it into the fantasy setting of fighting human colonizers. But on the other hand, Avatar 2 is sometimes too naive in its portrayal of teenagers.
Over the course of the movie, the phrases “I’m so lonely” and “no one understands me” are uttered from them several times, which after the sheer number of mediocre young adult films already seems in poor taste. It is on young adult “Avatar 2” as if it is oriented in its worst moments of the script. There aren’t that many of them, but against the background of all the other well-considered scenes, such story sags look especially noticeable.
However, partly in such nuances can be blamed on the film’s focus on the widest possible audience. Including the crowds that go to theaters only once a year. That’s why Avatar 2 looks as safe as possible in terms of experimentation with the pitch. It develops according to all the laws and traditions of cinema, it is practically an academic work of art, which can be studied as a reference example of a competently made movie.
Separately, it is pleasant that even with a duration of more than three hours, “Avatar: Path of Water” does not feel dragged out. Every moment, every dialog in it seems appropriate, you don’t get bored at all. And for three-hour movies it is a rare case, so Cameron was able to do it here.
Except that the director was a little tricky, because “Avatar 2” is not always able to offer creative scenes to capture the audience’s attention. And that’s where the movie’s main virtue comes to the forefront. “Avatar: Path of Water” is the most beautiful movie in terms of technology today.
The PR campaign around the movie was built around this, but all doubts disappear from the first seconds of viewing. Cameron has deliberately inserted a few large-scale landscapes at the beginning to give you a full appreciation of what the crew has been working on all these years. “Avatar 2 looks stunning. And even the last skeptic who appreciates the art component in artistic works, not “graphon”, will not be able to disagree with this.
When the film industry adopted 3D technology as the norm, it was as if many directors and production companies didn’t understand why they needed it. And they only put 3D into their work to fit the trend. However, Cameron is well aware of how to use 3D properly. On this technology here works and the structure of the frame, and the passage of the camera, and other technological nuances. Therefore, when watching the viewer is literally immersed in what is happening, and to break away is almost impossible.
The underwater entourage of the most part of the movie works on “immersion” in the story. The underwater depths of “Avatar 2” are a total eye-catcher and the most beautiful depiction of oceanic beauty in pop culture. Every underwater shot feels almost like real magic. That’s why even the long swims of the heroes, which don’t seem to move the story anywhere in particular, are curious to watch.
This is basically one of the main secrets and at the same time wonders of “Avatar: The Way of Water”. If you think about it, many scenes in it are noticeably stretched out. This applies to peaceful dialog, and battles, and the movement of the heroes. In any other movie, something similar would seem too artificial and superfluous. But in “Avatar 2” thanks to the amazing use of technology, you can enjoy even the most banal scenes. Believe me, no one else has realized the scene “doctor shines a flashlight into patient’s eyes” on the same level as Cameron.
“Avatar: Path of Water” wants to be taken apart into individual details, because there are plenty of them in the movie. The physics of water, the friction of materials against each other, glare and color work – all this causes sincere delight. Watching “Avatar 2” does not get boring all three hours, and Cameron in addition regularly changes the conditions of what is happening to maintain a sense of novelty. And the work with lighting in the movie in general deserves all the applause in the world.
Separately, the director showed how to properly shoot movies using higher frame rates. Many moments of “Avatar: Path of Water” are shown at 48 frames per second instead of the standard 24. The movie industry has tried to flirt with such a solution before, such as in “Gemini” with Will Smith. But the attempts were mostly failures.
“Avatar: Path of Water” may well make the technology of shooting at an increased frame rate a standard, as it turned out in its time with the first “Avatar” with 3D. The increased fps adds extra intensity to the exploration and battle scenes.
It’s done so well that even in “Avatar 2” itself, the scenes with normal frame rates closer to the finale start to seem a bit slow. Be prepared that after “Avatar: Path of Water,” looking at literally every other movie, TV series, and even video games can be a bit painful.
With such breakthrough visuals, Cameron could have made even a three-hour techno-demo, where beautiful scenes would change every half hour without much sense. And that would have already looked breakthrough. The more surprising is that Avatar: The Way of Water turned out to be a good, competent movie. The first part on its background seems outdated and ill-conceived. Even in some ways unnecessary.
After all, Cameron plans to release two more films about the world of the Na’vi, and “The Way of Water” – a kind of prologue to future events. It only introduces us to the new conditions of life of the main characters on Pandora, outlines the future large-scale conflict between humans and the Na’vi. At the same time, it still remains a complete and independent story.
And after what we have seen in “The Way of Water” we wish that Disney and 20th Century Fox would let Cameron realize the whole idea. Because if the director’s prologue turned out to be so epic, it’s scary to even imagine what he has in store for the finale.
“Avatar: Path of Water” – a reason to go to the theater, even if you never visit them at all. It’s a triumph of the human mind using technology to push the boundaries of fiction. And, most importantly, it’s just a good movie that doesn’t break in any way under the weight of its phenomenal technological advances
By releasing the first installment of Avatar in 2009, James Cameron didn’t just prove once again that he is one of the best directors in the world. Especially when it comes to technological advances in filmmaking. The story of Jake Sully on the planet Pandora managed to popularize 3D film technology so successfully that it became the new standard of filmmaking. In 2022, Cameron is back with Avatar: Path of Water to once again surprise everyone with advancements in movie technology. We tell you in the review below how the second installment of “Avatar” turned out.
Mind-boggling graphics, which can easily be called the best in the film industry; the first in the history of feature-length cinema competent use of shooting at higher frame rates; eye-pleasing sets; an interesting story, worthy of realizing all its characters
Flirtation with the young adult genre hurts some of the storylines; the movie’s general focus on mass audiences prevents it from taking risks or experimenting too much with the narrative
Avatar: The Way of Water movie meaning
Genre sci-fi action movie
Directed by James Cameron
Starring Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, C.C. Pounder, Sigourney Weaver, Stephen Lang
Premiere in theaters
Year of release 2022