Avatar: The Way of Water is a riveting film experience


Jeremy Castillo Hernandez, Editor

Some consider the first Avatar movie to be a masterpiece, while others view it as tolerable. No matter what your thoughts are for the first film, it can’t be denied that its popularity and profit were immense. So much so that it currently holds the rank for highest grossing feature of all time. Now over a decade later, James Cameron returns with a bigger vision of Pandora that leaves many wondering how its performance will compare to the first film. 

Avatar: The Way of Water is astounding for several reasons, one of them being the visuals. If you think the first film looks good, you’re definitely in for a treat. The first movie pushed the boundaries of motion capture technology and this sequel continues to do so.

According to the Los Angeles Times, James Cameron had decided he wanted to dive into the aquatic setting of Pandora in 2013. However, the technology to capture the actors’ performances underwater did not exist at the time. After a few years of testing and investing, Cameron was able to capture movement and expression underwater. It wasn’t until 2017 that filming actually took place which would then last for three years. The time and effort behind these photo-real visuals definitely shows and cannot be praised enough. 

The prime element of Avatar 2 is the world building. As you watch the film, you begin to understand more of the environmental, mythological, and traditional components of the planet. As previously mentioned, Cameron uses this movie to explore the aquatic regions of Pandora in which the audience is able to discover the marine biology of the world. In a time where many films are derived from existing intellectual property, it’s fascinating to watch all these ideas unfold on the big screen. 

While Avatar 2 has many attractive features, it does not certify it as flawless. One point that many will make is that it shares common traits with the first film. The theme regarding the protection of our planet is still present, but it then expands to a greater message. As the Sully family is protecting their planet you will see how they also go through trouble to protect one another, making family the main point.

It could be tempting to wait for Avatar 2’s digital release, especially with the three hour runtime. But if you’re a fan of its predecessor, tired of Disney Plus visual effects, or like James Cameron are tired of sitting on your posterior, you will find that Avatar: The Way of Water is worth the movie-going experience.