Skip to comments.Vatican calls 'Avatar' bland (a spiritual dud)
Posted on 01/11/2010 9:56:29 AM PST by NYer
The futuristic 3-D adventure, directed by James Cameron, has received scathing reviews from Vatican Radio as well as the Holy See's official newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano.
The epic movie, which will be released in Italy this week, has received generally favourable reviews in the United States and Britain, amazing critics and cinemagoers with its technical mastery and blend of real-life actors and animation.
It takes place in 2154 on the planet Pandora, light years away from Earth, where humans have established an environmentally-destructive mining colony.
But the record budget had failed to impress the Catholic Church hierarchy in Rome.
"It has a great deal of enchanting, stunning technology, but few genuine or human emotions," wrote L'Osservatore Romano.
"Its significance is in its visual impact rather than in the story, and in its messages, despite the fact that they are hardly new.
"Cameron, concentrating on the creation of the fantasy world of Pandora, chooses a bland approach. He tells the story without any profound exploration."
The plot descends into sentimentality, the Vatican newspaper said, and "a rather facile anti-imperialist and antimilitarist parable which doesn't have the same bite as other more serious films."
It concluded, though, that the "spectacle" of the film was worth the price of a cinema ticket.
There were harsh words too from Vatican Radio, which accused the film of "being a wink towards the pseudo-doctrines which have made ecology the religion of the millennium." Avatar's faults meant that it would not go down in the annals of cinema history, Vatican Radio said.
L'Osservatore Romano has tried to strike a less staid, more contemporary tone in recent years, commenting on popular culture as well as covering issues relating to the Church.
It has passed judgment on the Harry Potter films as well as Dan Brown's 'The Da Vinci Code' and 'Angels and Demons'.
(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...
Personally, I have no interest in seeing this film.
The visual technology was stunning.
The plot was contrived, the characters were very cliche and predictable.
Hollywood hates your God. They take their marching orders from the god of this world. Every movie they make is intended to minimize God, turn people to depravity, create idols, make Christians look stupid, pervert the truth, etc. This is unarguable.
I saw it. It’s long. It’s pretty. Some parts were boring. Lots of cliches (bad marine, evil corporation, lovable tree-huggers, Noble Savages.) Several predictable developments. The saving grace, aside from the visuals, is that it’s the Marine who makes the connection between the two cultures, not some lefty tree-hugging scientist. The kid who plays the crippled Marine is pretty effective. I liked him. But it was a long time to sit there wearing those 3D glasses, and I got restless.
Kind of a “Golden Compass” sort of thing, I suspect. I rented that movie for a buck and even then felt a bit ripped off. Good visuals aren’t enough to keep me interested any more. I really, REALLY wanted to see Avatar. I’m finding I am really not interested now. It just happened naturally.
The film wankers were too damn busy with effects to worry about niceties like plot, story, line, character development, yadda, yadda, yadda. It's a compendium of cowboy movies about a cowboy who finds himself and his soul in the culture of the Indians, who don't like him, but in the end they fight together against the corrupt Indian agent and the cavalry. In this one, the Indians are blue, have pointy ears, and extraordinarily unusual tails. It was reported on this site that a Freeper child called it, "Pocahontas" in blue. Bingo!
Think Disneyland ... ya want culture, try your local Public Library. Ya want nerd-zeit-geist, ya see the movie. Also loaded with touchy-feely enviro-nazi undertones. But you all can handle it. In order to withold financial support from the Left, you can wait until it's available on DVR, and all watch it together.
My 21 year old daughter saw it at IMAX. Her opinion? “It was long!”
Again and again I find myself let down by Benedict.
>> A Spiritual Dud
Ditto Cameron’s mega-bucks, mega-stinker Titanic.
I saw it. Don’t bother. Its pretty much Pocahontas and Dances with Wolves all over again.
The visuals were impressive — the story was a 3-hour cliche’.
Dances With Wolves II: Going Custer on their Ass
"Pray to our God, here are your chains."
The reason I commented is because this is a rare instance where the Pope is mistakenly aligning with the statists. The other 99% of the time you are wrong.
"The Hands of Social Justice." "Buy local, think global."
They had posters of what they(the kids) could do to help the neighborhood - ghastly leftist. And another for the globe. "Save the planet, don't eat meat." "Work union to protect workers rights."(I blew my top when I saw this line.)
Perhaps not lock step but absolutely not 99%
I take it back, the Catholic church is in complete and utter lock step with statists.
My comment posted earlier is germain to this discussion. Benedict and even Pope John Paul have done a poor job of reigning in leftists elements of the Church that spread like a cancer in the 60's and 70's. An important effect is that people such as yourself are justifiably confused about the Church's view on government and the individual.
A core belief in Catholicism (and Christianity as a whole) rests with individual action as opposed to the collective. Since the two are often mutually exclusive, what we do as individuals should take precedence when we're talking about governmental policy. That has been the position of the Church up until Vatican 2 when the Left took a strong hold. Reality and tradition have pushed back hard against Leftist dribble, but, as you have found it is still commonplace.
So when you say the Church is in league with the statists, I have to disagree - theologically and traditionally it is not. However, there are plenty of Catholics, including many bishops that think individuals should abdicate their personal responsibilities to the state. These people need to be enlightened or purged. This pope has made it clear that he will not do this. Sad.
I recommend it for the beauty and visual effects. But I looked at my watch at least ten times during the last 40 minutes ... it was way too long and the battle was drug out and boring.
Did you actually read the pope's statement or what ABC news reported he said? According to Catholic New Agency, ...
.- The Holy Father addressed the diplomatic corps accredited to the Holy See on Monday morning for what some call the state of the world address. Gathered in the Sala Regia of the Apostolic Palace, the diplomats to the Vatican heard a message that reiterated the Pontiffs hope for a new consciousness that pursues peace in the world through the protection of creation.
Pope Benedict made it a point to repeat once again the sentiment proposed in his encyclical, Caritas in Veritate that the causes of the global economic crisis and consequent social instability can be found in a current self-centered and materialistic way of thinking which fails to acknowledge the limitations inherent in every creature.
The Pope cited the example of the communist regime in Berlin as an illustration of the way the denial of God distorts the freedom of the human person, yet also devastates creation.
He added that the protection of creation is not principally a response to an aesthetic need, but much more to a moral need...
The threats to man and creation, including nature, said the Pontiff, must be addressed within the framework of a great educational program aimed at promoting an effective change of thinking and creating new lifestyles. To achieve this, he said, freedom for cooperation and shared responsibility must be provided for between secular and religious communities.
You can read the full account here.
I have the ability to see movies for free because my nephew runs a theater.
I made it about 20 minutes through this film.
I see nothing in your excerpt that tells me Pope Benedict does not advocate international treaties that trump individual will and local governments. This violates the Church’s principles of individual rights and agency.
Not worth the money for any Christian to see since it glorifies something else other than God.
The whole episode: "Dances With Smurfs" (11/11/09)