Monday Morning Quarterback
By BOP Staff
August 30, 2010
Matthew Huntley: Bruce, you will get NO excoriation from me on your points about Star Wars. I'm glad someone finally said it on MMQB threads. I too am tired of people telling me how great those movies are (dialogue and all) just because they saw them as a kid and the experience has stayed with them. Yes, the movies are technically superb (and Empire is a masterpiece on many levels), but story wise, no one wants to admit how simple-minded they are. Thanks for opening that can of worms.
On Avatar, though, Reagen makes a good point and even though James Cameron's ego is bloated and he lacks a certain humility, for him to be the filmmaker behind the two highest grossing movies of all time is undeniably impressive. That much is certain. However, even though I have great respect for Cameron (in my opinion, Terminator 2 remains the greatest action/special effects extravaganza of all time), I still long for a box-office champion that's more narratively challenging than technically innovative (it'd be great to have both, but narrative is more important).
With that said, what impresses me most about Avatar is no matter how much it was criticized for its lack of story, people still went to see it. The movie became part of our collective consciousness and it's something everybody wanted to be a part of (and I'm not talking about conformity, but just being in the know). For a movie to carve such a formidable place in our culture, whether or not it's justified, is amazing.
Daron Aldridge: With this re-release, I think that Cameron just wanted to cross the $750 million mark. It probably just irked him that he was a hair shy of being able to tell people that Avatar made three quarters of a billion dollars. But Reagen has a point, Cameron has an uncanny ability to defy the near-universal chorus of people calling for him to flop. Most impressive to me is Cameron's follow-through and the fact that you could fill the distance between Avatar and Titanic with the domestic haul of Nolan's The Prestige three times over. (The Prestige reference isn't too left field for me because it is fresh on my mind after re-watching it this weekend.)