New Avatar Capable of Portraying Titanic Human Emotions
The latest and most-talked-about movie of the world, Avatar, received several nominations to the Oscars. Another of James Cameron's blockbusters, Avatar created waves all across the globe with its generous use of 3-D technology.
The movie received rave reviews from critics in almost all the newspapers of the world. Audiences flocked to multiplexes in hordes to watch the movie. They even went to the extent of spending their hard-earned money liberally in order to see the movie twice, thrice and more than thrice.
The movie, no doubt, was worth watching. The 3-D technology in it gave you the feel of an immersive and realistic environment, made you feel that you were touching objects in the film, that the rocks and stones that were hurled by characters of the film at other characters, were being thrown at you. You must have jerked back in your seat when you thought that something on screen was hurtling straight towards you. And yet, Avatar was beaten hollow by The Hurt Locker at the Academy Awards.
While the latter film won six Academy Awards and stole the show on the night of the Oscars, the much hyped-up former film had to be content with only three Academy Awards and nursing deflated spirits.
Popular 3-D Technology
Though 3-D technology in movies is something that is not exactly new, Avatar is one of the first renowned movies of the world to have experimented with 3-D technology and made the use of 3-D technology in movies, famous. People are now talking about 3-D TVs so that they might see movies at home with the help of this brilliant technology. Engineers and marketers are also thinking how they will invent and sell 3-D television sets so that people can watch 3-D movies at home without wearing those goggles that you had to wear when you went to see Avatar. The 3-D technology lends a certain power to a movie. It makes a movie almost real. But apart from this power, can 3-D technology really make a movie?
Which is the Bigger Money Spinner?
Avatar was a tremendous hit and a success at the box office. It beat Titanic to become the highest-grossing movie in the history of motion pictures. Titanic was a movie that was also directed by James Cameron. It was released worldwide in 1997-1998. It won eleven Academy Awards and equaled the record of Ben Hur and The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, the only other Hollywood movies to have won eleven Oscars. On the face of it, Avatar beat Titanic. But if you looked behind the scenes, you probably would think otherwise. Ticket prices have shot up in the last decade. Also, only multiplexes and IMAX cinema theaters screened the 3-D version of Avatar. Naturally, ticket prices were higher in such cinema halls than in other cinema halls, which only screened 2-D versions of the movie. Hence, the escalated ticket prices of the 21st century in general, and the very high ticket prices charged by multiplexes, in particular, accounted for Avatar's generating such high revenues. If Titanic had been released in 2009-2010 instead of in 1997-1998, it might have generated as much money as Avatar generated.
Valid or Invalid Questions?
Another factor why everyone was going crazy over Avatar was because of its 3-D technology. The 3-D magic is still new to most spectators and was compelling them to visit multiplexes in droves. Many diehard fans of Titanic were raising the following questions amongst the public:
• Was there anything great about Avatar besides its 3-D technology?• Was Avatar capable of arousing the emotions that were aroused on seeing Jack Dawson and Rose DeWitt Bukater?• Did Jake and Neytiri match up to Jack and Rose?• Was Avatar a romantic movie that was capable of sweeping you off your feet?• Could Avatar have done so well if it was produced keeping everything the same but minus the 3-D aspect?
These questions continue to haunt movie buffs even now. Only very mature movie critics can make an unbiased comparison between the two movies.
Movie critics and analysts said that Avatar was a great movie that had a new and mind-blowing concept. But according to them, Titanic was an even greater movie that portrayed one of the oldest concepts of humankind in a miraculous manner. Avatar underscored the disadvantages of deforestation and aimed to propagate preservation of eco-systems and biodiversity whereas Titanic highlighted a romantic attachment between a rich girl and a poor boy. Avatar was a science fiction whereas Titanic was a romantic drama.
Techies versus Romantics
Techies were all for Avatar though Titanic fans still swear by Cameron's genius in the old movie. Titanic fans say that Avatar would be no match for Titanic without its 3-D gizmos and gimmicks. In their opinion, Avatar showcased neither the talent of its actors nor the expertise of Cameron as a director. Since Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana appeared as animated forms, Avatar according to them, displayed the potential of modern techniques and technology rather than the prowess of actors or the capabilities of the director. Those who rooted for Avatar however harbored a different opinion. They said that Avatar portrayed the genius of Cameron as a modern-day film director. After all, the animation was his brainchild as was everything else in the movie. They said that Cameron had matured a lot over the last thirteen years from being a director of tear-jerkers to becoming a director of hi-tech cinema. Titanic fans protest vociferously saying that Avatar is hardly a film. It neither has a proper story nor does it have the magic necessary to make it a memorable film, qualities they claim were present in Titanic.
And the Winner Is...
However, as the debate and the war between fans of the two movies raged, James Cameron's ex-wife Kathryn Bigelow emerged as the clear winner in the Oscars. Thank god for that! Because if she was not chosen, the Oscars would have ended in a kind of confusion - between humanity and technology - with some humans preferring the power of technology over their own capabilities! Just because he did not win this time does not mean that James Cameron is not a genius. He has proved his unusual abilities as a film director not only through Titanic and Avatar but also through The Terminator, Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Aliens and True Lies. Undoubtedly, James Cameron is one of the greatest directors of modern times as he has reinvented and redefined movies with the help of his remarkable talents. But Kathryn Bigelow's victory should be an eye-opener for him. It should teach him that he is not the only genius in the field, that women directors can be geniuses too, and that however advanced technology may be, there is nothing smarter than the human brain and nothing more emotional than the human heart!