Posted on 8/11/10 09:26 AM
I have to admit, I was intrigued that a movie was being made of "Avatar: The Last Airbender". Seeing the final product, I wonder why I was even excited. I have my brother to thank for introducing to the series, which I regard as one of the better animated series for kids to date. But, with this film, everything that was great about the series is completely gone. Any humor that was in the series is replaced by awkwardness. All of this feels too scattered, but that's to be expected when a movie compresses twenty episodes worth of material into 103 minutes. There is exposition abound, and none of it feels natural, and not even half of it is necessary. Seriously, M. Night Shyamalan needs to stop directing his own screenplays. Not to mention, the fight scenes are nowhere near well-choreographed. Plus, the CG effects are so sub-par, especially for the creatures Appa and Momo. The acting is overall awful. Noah Ringer is good at the fighting, but he should stick more to that than acting. Nicola Peltz is so cloying that it's painful. And why the hell couldn't the filmmakers get someone that's actually funny to play Sokka? Jackson Rathbone still looks as pained and uncomfortable as he did in the Twilight "Saga". Dev Patel, as the banished prince Zuko, speaks nearly every line he has in a huff through gritted teeth. Aasif Mandvi lays on the smarm so thick, it's a wonder the other actors could still breathe. Shaun Toub, at least, is halfway decent as Zuko's uncle Iroh. The sets just look so fake, even when they're on an outdoor set.
Long story short: Stick to the series.
P.S. This is just a fanboy rage moment: I do acknowledge that it's neat to hear all the of these characters being pronounced like actual Asian-style names. Yet, I feel so angry whenever I hear Sokka's name pronounced "Soak-a". Is it just me?