Thursday, October 13, 2011

A film that angered you

Last Airbender, The (2010)

I know I mentioned this before just the day before yesterday, but I’m going to have to elaborate upon it for two reasons: 1) This film angered me. 2) Anything that deserves bashing deserves proper bashing, which I didn’t have time to get into previously.

Why The Last Airbender is a Shitty Movie

1. The Last Airbender is riddled with scenes that were obviously designed to hold kick-ass CG effects that weren’t there.

Allow me to be perfectly clear, though. What CG effects were there looked incredible. Check this out:

There simply wasn’t enough of it to make up for the terrible story. And when I say “wasn’t enough” I mean there were lots of shots like this:

Where the characters are standing around in some pose and nothing else is happening. I kept staring at the screen thinking “Okay, sweet, he’s striking a pose… He’s moving slowly… he looks like he’s about to bend something… come on… bend something… bend something… BEND SOMETHING DAMMIT WHY AM I HERE I DON’T CARE ABOUT YOUR LAME POSE.” I nearly rage-quit my eyes.

2. The story deviates drastically (and for the worse) from the series. 

I’m usually very flexible with this kind of thing. Kudos for trying to capture an entire series in a two hour movie. However, when you have that much awesome material to draw from, and your story turns out this bad, I have to wonder what happened.

Besides taking well-developed characters and converting them to cardboard yawn-bots, the construction of this story is so muddled I don’t even know where to begin. Let me state my first retrospective observation, which is I don’t even remember what happened, only that I hated it when it was happening.

Here’s the thing that got me. The entire first half of the movie was spent moving from one location to the next, simply for the sake of moving somewhere new. It was as if in his attempt to show all four elements of bending, Shyamalan completely forgot the basic rules of story, such as 1) Beginning, 2) Middle, and 3) End.

It gave off the feeling of an ADD child attempting to tell someone what he did that day. “First I was in the south pole where there’s lots of ice and it’s cold but then Zuko was in the fire nation because that’s opposite of cold I think and then I decided to quest to the north pole but first I stopped to help some earth benders stop digging and then I went into the sky and then Zuko was in his ship some more and I was kidnapped and I was in the ship but then I somehow ended up at the north pole, insert some special effects, the end.”

3. The races of the characters make no sense.

“I come from a clan of eskimos but I’m white.”

4. It was anti-climatic.

What it was supposed to be:

What it was:

5. They repeatedly mispronounced the main character’s name.

This should be forgivable. After all, we only had sixty-one episodes in which “Aang” was pronounced ANG and not AHNG. (For the record, his name was NEVER pronounced AHNG.)

6. And worst of all, it gave the cartoon series a bad rep for anyone who hadn’t seen it yet.

I kid you not, as I left the theater I overheard someone say “Glad I didn’t waste my time watching the series.”

Enough said.

Still haven’t had enough The Last Airbender bashing for one day? Here, have some-

Great/Funny Reviews

“The Last Airbender” is an agonizing experience in every category I can think of and others still waiting to be invented. The laws of chance suggest that something should have gone right. Not here. It puts a nail in the coffin of low-rent 3D, but it will need a lot more coffins than that.
-Roger Ebert, Sun Times

“Please, Hollywood, if there’s to be another Airbender movie, hand the job to some efficient hack, and not to a once mesmerizing artist who’s lost his way.”
-Richard Corliss, TIME magazine

“Mere words can barely describe the sheer inanity on display.”
-Mike McGranagham, Aisle Seat

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