Movie Review: Avatar: The Way of the Water


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After over a decade since last seeing the Sully family, it is time to head back to the theater for James Cameron’s sequel to his immensely popular movie, “Avatar.” “Avatar: The Way of Water ” takes the viewers back to the moon Pandora, where you see Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) and his wife Neytriti (Zoe Saldaña) take on the humans returning to the moon, in another thrilling adventure. Not only are we introduced to several new characters, but also to a whole new way of life on Pandora. 

The story follows Sully, who was previously human (now he’s Na’vi, the people native to Pandora) and his family who make a quick escape from their home due to the humans trying to capture them. This caused them to need immediate refuge leading to them staying with another tribe of Na’vi on Pandora who live near the water. 

While the 3 hour runtime is a bit daunting, the expansion of the plot and character development made the movie engaging and even had us wishing it wouldn’t end. Admittedly, some of the scenes could have been cut short, however, we got to see the beauty of Pandora through a new variety of plant and animal life in the ocean. Watching the family learn to adapt to a completely new environment was really interesting since they had to face challenges that made us feel anxious for the characters. There were also a lot of sad moments in the movie that really pulled at our heartstrings. The animation felt so real, like we were there. Occasionally, we would get so caught up in the beauty of the film that we were distracted from the plot, making it somewhat hard to follow. 

Despite the movie’s popularity, Avatar has been called out for its racial undertones and cultural appropriation. We saw the links between the colonization all around the world and the colonization on Pandora. We also noticed the resemblance between native cultures, and the clothes and culture in the movie. Even with the movie telling the story of indigenous people, it was filmed by a predominantly white cast and production team. Which is why many people found racial undertones in the film as Sully basically represents a white savior to the native people. According to the New York Post, many indigenous people are boycotting the film for they find the movie offensive and lacks representation. 

Even though there is controversy with Avatar 2, we would still give it an 8/10. The writing was really good and the animation was spectacular. Although it was a bit confusing, it was still very interesting and had us at the edge of our seats. Go watch it and bring a friend or family member with you!