Rewatched in 2017: still the same!
This is not a movie that tops any of the best films out there, but it is indeed a work of art, something unique that needs to be compare to nothing but few other science fiction movies such as Star Wars.
It was as predictable as it can be, and the dialogue were nothing but ordinary. But Avatar made me dream like no other movies I can recall did. Cameron created nothing but a stunning experience that leaves you breathless if you are willing to go along the ride.
I still can't manage to find a way how I will list this movie among this year's others, but Avatar is something great, something you absolutely have to live.
We've seen the 'civilized nation clashes with indigenous people' conflict many times, both in fiction and in real life. This story puts us in the lush, beautiful world of Pandora. The visual style here is well-done, and I don't normally care about that sort of thing. The Na'vi people have a well-defined society, and the characters, while stereotypical, are all placed appropriately.
The film has its flaws. The plot is predictable; you see where it will go well before the first act is done. The characters are also stock; there is very little originality put into them. The civilized man who falls for the beautiful native girl, the grizzled army leader, the experienced scientist...these should not be a surprise. While they keep consistent to their character, there are no sudden turns.
James Cameron created a great world. Unfortunately, he didn't fill it with much.
There's also a love story here. Blue alien love. :) And, cross cultural love.
It's full of action, it's sci fi, romance, and adventure. Very well done, interesting blue makeup and computer graphics integration. Oh, and there's dragons, and the blue aliens ride the dragons!
If you want to see what a cat-human might look like, take a look.