Industrialization & Pollution An Insight To Environmentalism, Corporate Responsibility, and the Culture of the World
Movie Explicated: AvatarProject Contributors:Jessica Hayes - PowerPoint Configuration, Introduction, Video ClipMichelle Ripley - Storyline, Major Themes, SummarySemyon Lisun - Cultural Aspects, Characters, Technical Aspects
IntroductionDirected by James Cameron in 2009, this film attends to issues regarding environmental pollution, corporate greed/negligence, and culture definition.Jake Sully, a paraplegic Marine, is sent to the moon of Pandora to befriend the native community, the Na’vi. His ultimate goal is to convince them to relocate their home, as it sits directly on top of a highly precious material.
Introduction (cont’d)Upon becoming one of the Na’vi, Jake is faced with a critical decision: follow his previous orders, or follow his heart and save this beautiful community. This film includes many aspects ranging from adventure, love, and comedy.
Avatar follows the story Storyline of a paraplegic war veteran named Jake who is allowed the opportunity to take his brothers place in a mission on the planet of Pandora after he is killed. Jake is hooked up to an avatar, a replication of the humanoid species, the Na’vi, that inhabit Pandora.
Using his new Avatar identity, Jake isStoryline (Cont’d) assigned to gather information about the Na’vi, information the military hopes to use to relocate them. During his long days spent with this strange new species, Jake falls in love with, not only the Na’vi culture, but a Na’vi female named Neytiri as well.
Storyline (Cont’d)The military soon moves in to destroy the Na’vi’s land and harvest the extremely valuable Omaticaya. Jake is forced to choose between his genetic species and his newly adopted alien species; in doing so he must betray one or the other. All events lead up to an intense battle between the two cultures and the internal struggle Jake faces from making the decision he knows is right.
There are many cultural aspects in this movie, Cultural Aspects from religion to the way the company or people acts to get what they want, as well as how we as humans think or feel when something is being taken away.The religion that is part of the life of the Na’vi people is quite well- developed in this movie. Some say that it is much like Pantheism, though others argue that it leans more toward animism.
Cultural Aspects (Cont’d)Also, the religious aspects match quite closely to those of the native American people. The cultural theme behind the movie is much like the native people of Americas, who were told to leave their land in order for the Spanish, among others, to get the gold that so many desired. Throughout history, we can see how the effects that these circumstances had on people and society.
Characters Jake Sully- Protagonist of the film. Jake is an ex United States Marine who, after an injury to the spine during his service, could no longer use his legs. He is hired by the company which is harvesting elements from the planet Pandora. He believes that a Marine’s job is to always fight for peace and democracy. Jake is very brave, quite ambitious, proud, and wont let anything get in the way of what he wants.Neytiri- The princess of the Na’vi people. She becomes Jake’s teacher after he is excepted by the Na’vi people. She falls in love with Jake because of his brave, unique, and loyal character.
Characters Cont’d Trudy Chacon- A military pilot assigned help the government in their program. She views her job from a very loyal perspective and does anything necessary to get the job done. She does, however, end up siding with the Na’vi. Dr. Grace Augustine- The leader of the scientists of the avatar program. She is also Jake’s mentor and helps him learn the language of the Na’vi, as well as how to live on Pandora. Norm Spellmen- One of the scientists who came to Pandora with Jake to be part of the avatar program. He is a very bright scientist who used to work with Jake’s brother prior to his death.
AntagonistsParker Selfridge and Colonel Miles Quaritch are the main antagonists in Avatar. Together, they represent the government entity that strives to destroy the beautiful planet of Pandora for simple monetary gain. They have no morals regarding environmental preservation.
Major ThemesThe movie Avatar has some very clear themes, and a few hidden messages throughout. This movie brings to light the very real conflict that exists between man and nature today, such as habitat destruction, imperialism, racism, property rights, and the importance of spirituality and religion.
Major Themes (Cont’d)Corporate greed was a very prominent theme in this movie. The government, blinded by greed, destroyed the Na’vi’s home with the goal of harvesting Omaticaya for immense profit. Not only did the army destroy property that was not theirs, but in doing so, they demolished a sacred spiritual site.
Technical Aspects of Animation & FilmingThe time and effort put into this movie is very elaborate. James Cameron spent many years improving the effects of the movie before even putting it into production. There were many different aspects that were used in combination, making this film incredibly diverse.CGI- 70% of this film consisted of computer generated imagery. Cameron used this with motion-capture to produce a film that is as close to regular movement as possible. He was able to make the faces of the Na’vi more realistic by improving the way the suits were able to capture facial expressions. This was done by the actors wearing skull caps with cameras that monitored eyes, mouths, and other small facial movements.The Stage for all of the Motion-capture filming and animation was six times bigger then anything ever used in Hollywood.
ConclusionAvatar became the first film to gross more than $2 billion, was nominated for nine academy awards, and two sequels are planned to be made. It is easy to see why the film was so successful; the blend of real-life filming and animation is a visual masterpiece. Another reason for the film’s success is the captivating story-line that sends a powerful message about the dangers of ignorance and the power of love.
Works Cited- Jamieson, Dale. Ethics and the Environment: An Introduction. Cambridge, England. Cambridge University Press. 2008. Book.- “Social and Environmental Responsibility in Small and Medium Enterprises in Latin America.” Deres.org. Antonio Vives. January 23, 2013.- “Avatar.” IMDb.com. Np. January 22, 2013. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0499549/- Domosh, Mona. ”Selling Civilization: Toward a Cultural Analysis of Americas Economic Empire in the Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries." Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers (2004): 453-467.- Gohain, Hiren. " Corporate Greed and Peoples Livelihood." Economic and Political Weekly (2006): 4926.- Morehead, John. Avatar: Probing Beyond Visuals to Culture and Identity cinefantastiqueonline.com, December 26, 2009.http://cinefantastiqueonline.com/2009/12/avatar-probing-beyond-visuals-to-culture-and-identit- Johnson, Bobbie. The Technological Secrets of James Cameron’s New Film Avatar The Guardian, August 19, 2009.http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2009/aug/20/3d-film-avatar-james-cameron-technology- Native Avatar Characters: The Movie Avatar Characters. The Hub Pages, January 05, 2010. http://thranax.hubpages.com/hub/avatar-characters- Avatar (2009) reviewed by That Film Guy’That Film Guy, 2009. www.thatfilmguy.net/avatar/