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Trailer: Avatar

James Cameron’s long-awaited next project, Avatar, has been all buzz and no trailer. Until now.

I dunno…I like the idea of a cool military SciFi story, but some of the effects are too obviously CG.

[via Twitch]

About John DeNardo (13012 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.

16 Comments on Trailer: Avatar

  1. Matte Lozenge // August 20, 2009 at 2:19 pm //

    Probably going to be the best sci-fi flick of the decade. I’m going to catch it in 3-D.

  2. Of course its CG, you can’t have sci fi without it. But wow does it look good. I just hope the story is as good.

  3. Yea! Dances with Gollums. I hope Le Guin has her lawyers revved up and on standby.

  4. Matte Lozenge // August 20, 2009 at 4:00 pm //

    LOL, Dances With Gollums, that’s perfect. Also looks like a Halo plus Terra mashup.

  5. You’re right. It looks animated instead of live action.

  6. The animated parts feel like a video game cut scene, or something the Blizzard folks would render to promote WoW. Maybe it will be better in 3D? At least that’s what Count Floyd would say.

    I’m still going to see this movie though.

  7. looks like jar jar binks went blue and developed attitude

    or its ‘Elves in Space!’

    meh – 3D may convince me to buy a ticket

  8. I saw a commenter on one of the sites call it Halo in Fern Gully. I shouldn’t have seen that comment before I veiwed the trailer. This I will probably go see anyway. Maybe.

  9. I get so little science fiction with space ships, aliens, and other worlds these days, I take anything I can get. I think it looks pretty terrific. And who knows, the CGI might clean up before theatrical release. It might not be final rendered footage. Especially since some of the CGI looked cleaner and better than others.

    (And sometimes, I think we expect too much realism out of our CGI. It’s still animation mixed with live-action. I think it’s okay when it looks a little less than real. Nobody complains, after all, when Roger Rabbit doesn’t look like he’s drawn by Jim Lee, or Alex Ross, or anything. It’s a silly point, but it’s one that crosses my mind now and then.)


  10. If they were going to make the aliens so stylistic, they should’ve just done the whole film in CG. Of course I’ll watch, but it’s going to take a big adjustment to get used to the Starship Troopers meets Shrek effect.

  11. Uncanny valley in the valley?

  12. Now I’m not going to be able to get “starship troopers meets Shrek” out of my head. Arg.

  13. @Pete Tz: “we expect too much realism out of our CGI”

    There is some truth to that, but don’t forgot the way Avatar was hailed by everyone involved and how it is now marketed. They didn’t WANT us to settle for Roger Rabbit2009.

    That said I don’t think it’s as bad as I first thought when I read “too obviously CG” above. Everyone can fall sooner or later, but in the end Cameron has always delivered, so I expect the atmosphere, storytelling and action-scenes to be as superb as always in his movies.

  14. I don’t know about Le Guin’s lawyers, but I think Ben Bova ought to be keeping an eye on this. I just re-read The Winds of Altair and the similarities just leapt out at me.

  15. There are no new stories, just reinterpretations, so similarities don’t necessarily make a work derviative.

    I think the CG looks great and can’t wait to see this.

  16. I think the point about expecting too much from CGI is a valid one. I mean, it’s aliens, alien worlds, etc. A decade and a half ago, we would still have been accepting of guys in rubber suits.

    Me, I’m hoping the story is more original than, “modified guy lands on planet as advance force, interacts with locals, goes native, and fights against his original species to predictable conclusion.” I haven’t been following any of the hype for this, so maybe I’m way off, but it’s the story line I am getting from the trailer. Great effects and 3D aside, I’d like a good narrative to go along with my SF eye candy. With the potential we have inherent in rendering the aliens, the world, and so on, I’d like to see the story stretch its muscles as well.

    And yeah, I think “wood elves in space” kind of sums the initial look up pretty well. 🙂

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