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 Movie Discussion: The Last Airbender

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Headmaster Sakano
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PostSubject: Movie Discussion: The Last Airbender   Tue Jul 06, 2010 2:26 am



Have you seen it yet?

Any thought's you want to share?

Do so here =)

WARNING: This is intended for people who know of the series and have seen
the movie. This post contains minor spoiler's only if you haven't seen the series. If you have seen
the series, read on as you know what happens anyway lol
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



My thoughts:


First of all, I just want to put out there that I adored the film, despite some things missing from the
movie that were in the show. I dealt with it. I thought the special effects were great. People are freaking
out over many things and I'll try to cover the major ones for you. Take my opinions, leave my
opinions, whatever. Hopefully, this will give everyone some insight into the movies inner workings.

Prepare for a LONG post.




First. Aang wasn't playful enough.

Ok. As I stated above, there was reason for that and the reason actually made sense. Imagine
hearing earth shattering news like "Your The Avatar!" and then your told your not allowed to have a
family of your own and had to keep an entire world in balance and learn all the elements. Honestly,
I probably would have done exactly what Aang did: run away and be highly upset. Aang seriousness in
the film made sense and was realistic. He was keeping his grief bottled up inside and wasn't allowing
himself to grieve over the loss of his 'family' The Air Nomads. In the show he eventually accepted it
but, now that I think of it, he got over it way to quickly in the show. I think Shyamalan was going for
a transition kind of thing, where Aang would eventually learn to 'Let Go' as Avatar Roku said.



Katara: Its Ong right? Sokka: I thought it was Aang.

Second. Name Pronunciations.

People are foolishly flipping out about, is some of the characters' name pronunciation. For instance.
In the show 'Aang' is pronounced like 'Ayng' while in the movie, its pronounced like 'Ong' Why is
this? Because Shyamalan was staying true to the Chinese pronunciation of their names. I honestly
don't know why people, who crave authenticity, are freaking out over this. In another example, Sokka
which is pronounced Sock-a [lol] in the show, is now pronounced 'so-ka' in the movie. Again, it sounds
more to what his nationality is supposed to be which is Eskimo/Inuit. Same goes for Uncle Iroh. In the
show its pronounced 'eye-row' and in the movie its said as 'e-row' which is, again, more true to how
you would pronounce it in Chinese. Zuko and Katara's names, along wit General Zhao's and Yue's
names were kept the same.




Third. "Aww Boomerang! You DO always come back!"

People hate the fact that Sokka wasn't "funny enough" Ok, again. Look at it this way. Sokka is a
teenager charged with caring for his entire village while his father is at war. He has a free-spirited
sister, elderly, and small children to look after not to mention he's practically the soul provider in terms
of obtaining food. Um...wouldn't you be just a tad serious too? In the beginning scenes, there hunting, like
in the show, and Sokka gets frustrated that what his father taught him, in terms of hunting, wasn't
working for him. Sokka's character is based around a young man trying to provide for his family and act
in a way that would make his father proud while struggling to 'find himse;f' and his purpose. After all, in
the show there was an entire episode based on Sokka feeling left out, as he is the ONLY one in the
group who can't bend an element. So, again. His seriousness wasn't a big deal.




Fourth. Yue's Hair.

I shouldn't even mention this because its honestly a stupid point but, people bring it up. For those who
aren't sure, Yue is the Princess of the Northern Water Temple. In the movie she was made to rule
the temple alone, while in the show, she ruled by her fathers side. Not a big deal that they made it so
he died. Anyway. When Yue was born, she didn't act like a normal baby; no crying, no moving. She
was completely still [not still born, just still] Her parents prayed to the water and moon spirits
[represented as Koi Fish with the Yin and Yang colors] to heal their child and they dipped her into the
sacred pool where the spirits resided. Upon doing so her hair turned white and the moon breathed life
into her and since then she was fine.

What people dislike is that her hair was white, but her eyebrows remained brown in the film. Seriously
guys? Would you dunk your entire new born baby in a pool of water just to have her hair match her
eye brows? Seriously >_> In the show, yes, her eyebrows were white, in SOME shots. In others they
were a light brown, just like in the picture I provided above. Just deal with it, ok? T_T

[Zuko as he appears, in the show, in Book one.] [Zuko as he appears in book 2-3]

Fifth. Zuko's scar and short hair.

This one is a biggie for most people. If you take a look at Zuko's scar in the show, it's very grotesque,
large and honestly looks nothing like a scar you would get from a burn. I think it was overly
exaggerated because its considered a 'cartoon' [I disagree. Shows like Avatar are considered
'Westernized Anime' ] If you took Zuko's scar and put it on a real life person, they would look like
The Phantom of The Opera. In all seriousness. Zuko's scar in the film looked believable. It looked like
he actually got burned. For those who don't know, when Zuko was a child his father, Fire Lord
Ozai, challenged him to an 'Agni Kai' [pronounced Agni 'key' in the movie] which is an observed
sparring match between two Fire Benders and Zuko was severely burned. For this reason, he was
banished and would only have his honor restored by his father if he were to capture Aang.

Moving onto Zuko's hair. I see people's point with this but some fans are making way to big a deal over
it. In the show, when Azula, Zuko's sister and his fathers favorite child, told Zuko he was once
again welcome in the Fire Nation and their father forgave him, she viciously turned on him and
attacked Zuko and his Uncle, Iroh. They were then chased away and in the final scene of the episode,
both Zuko and Iroh cut their hair. It was a symbolic gesture that meant they cut their ties from The
Fire Nation and were now Fugitives. It was a huge part of Zuko's character development as he
was finally taking steps to be his own person and not who his father wanted him to be. I understand
why people were a little peeved about this, and I kinda was too. But I'm not about to rip Shyamalan's
head off over it.



Aang: Noah Ringer. Zuko: Dev Petel. Katara: Nicola Peltz. Sokka: Jackson Rathbone.

Sixth. Casting choices.

One major argument people have, is that this was a 'Martial Arts based film, so where the hell are all
the Asian's?' Please. Just because you have an Asian based film, with martial arts in it, DOESN'T mean
you MUST cast Asians in it. Last time I checked, Indians can learn Martial Arts
too. In the show, people from the Water Tribe are portrayed with having dark skin. Not dark dark, more
like a cinnamon type complexion. Like Inuits have. Fire Nation were portrayed as having a fair,
pale complexion, as well as the Air Nomads and Earth Benders because they were supposed to
'Traditional Chinese' For the record, he did cast some Asian parts for The Earth Bender
roles.

People are hating the fact Shyamalan cast Indian's [as in from India] as The Fire Nation. Honestly, what
the hell is the big deal? Is it written in stone somewhere that Fire Nation HAS to be cast with
Caucasian actors? Please. Grow up people.

People also dislike the fact Katara was played by a white girl. Ok, see my point above. So what? Why
does skin color HAVE to matter? No one complained when Lex Luthor, who was originally white in
the comics, was portrayed as a black man in one of the Super-Man series [one of the more popular ones, I might add] so...again...what the hell is the problem?




Seventh. Missing scenes.

Ok. This kinda disappointed me as well. On an interview with Shyamalan who treated us to a 'behind
the scenes' of the movie that aired on Nickelodeon a day before the movie was released he showed
us some beautiful footage he shot of The Kiyoshi Warriors. [second image to the right next to the
cabbage guy icon] For those who don't know, The Kiyoshi Warriors, named after Avatar Kiyoshi, are the
all female warriors of Kiyoshi Island. The footage he shot was gorgeous. In the end, he didn't use it.
It had something to do with time constraints. Which I understood. If he went through the trouble of introducing The Kiyoshi Warriors, which took an entire episode in the show, it would have made the
movie lengthy and although he didn't say this, the guy he reports too probably told him to cut the
scene cause it would've made the movie too long. Ok. Nothing you can do about the scenes not being in
the movie. Move on.

I read this argument on DA from a disgruntled fan. "THERE WASN'T EVEN THE CABBAGE MAN! WTF?!?!"

T_T

Seriously? Your flipping because they didn't include The Cabbage Man?! Omg! Grow up! For those who
don't know, he Cabbage man made 2 VERY minor appearances in the show. Each time it was Aang,
or someone, trampling over his beloved Cabbage stand. He became a fan favorite. Why, I'm not sure.
But his face is priceless whenever someone ruined his cabbages lol. Anyway, this person was
seriously buggin' he wasn't include. Grow up chicka T_T




Eighth. Uncle Iroh wasn't fat.

But isn't the fact they kept his love and dedication to his nephew and his sanctity of the spirits
what mattered? In the show, Iroh is a warm hearted, true to his values type of guy who stands by Zuko,
his nephew, even after his banishment and the fact Zuko betrays him in Book 2. Iroh also loves Tea.
Also, in the show, Iroh has a big round belly that suits his character. Later on, during book 2-book 3 he
gets beefed up and all muscular. Well, the guy who played Iroh wasn't exactly a body builder and he
wasn't pudgey. Again, all that mattered was that they kept his personality which is loved by many,
including myself.



Ninth. Fire.

In the show, Fire Benders are able to produce Fire without needing Fire in the immediate area for them
to bend off of. In the movie, when the Fire Nation infiltrated The Southern Water Temple, they
launched giant fire balls into the city so they would have something to bend from. This, I can see
people's frustration with. In one scene, close to the end, Iroh gets angry and produces fire from out of
thin air, literally and the fire nation soldiers are like, dumb founded. Hello, you can do that too. In the
very last scene of the movie, which was so true to the ending of Book One, Fire Lord Ozai explains to
Azula, Zuko's sister, that Sozin's Comet, will allow The Fire Nation to create Fire at will and they won't
have to rely on 'setting up' first.



Tenth. Costumes.

Ok, this kind of goes hand in hand with my section on Casting Choices. Each Nation/Tribe's costumes
were modeled after traditional Chinese clothing. I think people apply this to more of the
Water/Fire/Earth Tribes and not so much the Air Temple. The Air Nomads are based on Shaolin
Monks. Water Tribe is based on, again, Inuits. Fire Nation and Earth Kingdom are based on the Chinese. Therefore, their costumes must coincide with their nationalities. People are complaining the
costumes weren't spot on. Creative license people. Shymalan was trying to stay true to Chinese
Tradition. I actually loved The Fire Nation uniforms and thought it fit the personalities of the Fire
Nation better. In the show there's way too much red and everything has a very 'pointy theme' to it,
even there shoes. In the movie it was very sheek to have almost pure black with red trims and spot
of red here and there. I think it portrayed the corruptness and villany of The Fire Nation nicely. Even
the decor in The Fire Lord's Palace was very traditional Chinese and it just added to the authenticity.



Closing Thoughts.


Over all, I found the film enjoyable. Even my mother, who didn't watch the series as religiously as I
have, understood what was going on and got the actual story line and also enjoyed the movie very
much. People have the nerve to compare this film to another "Dragonball Evolution" which was a shit
load of fail. That, however, is an argument for another topic.

Even if the film doesn't measure up to the dire hard fans' standards, it was still an enjoyable watch.
This was one movie I had no trouble spending money on to go see.

The action sequences were great as well as the graphics. The emotion portrayed, specifically by Aang
when he made his horrid discovery of his home, went right through you and he made you feel his pain.
You wanted to grieve for his loss with him. I love movies that can make you feel the main characters
pain and anguish, whatever it may be. A lot of people say the acting sucked and that there was no
emotion to it what-so-ever. There was. A lot of it. You felt the joy when the Earth Kingdom stood up
for themselves, the sadness during Sokka and Yue's Goodbye and the frusturation of the banished
prince's desire for acceptance. I felt all of that and any movie that can put you into the shoes of a
character, is tops in my book.

Do I recommend this movie? Definitely. Especially if your a long time fan of the series on Nickelodeon.
Even if your not, and have no clue what Avatar: The Last Airbender is about, it's still an enjoyable watch
and will make you want to learn how to bend the elements, yourselves.

Personal Over All Movie Rating: 9 out of 10



My nerdom on display xD Some shots of me and my little cousins, Bending The Elements


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


What
Is Your Element?

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