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Thread: The Last Airbender

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    The Last Airbender

    I am a big fan of Nickelodeon's Avatar: The Last Airbender series and was very excited to hear that they were making a movie. Not so thrilled about M. Night Shamaylan being the director.

    I went Friday night and the theater was full. You can tell there was a fan base, a lot of families. I had high hopes for this film as the trailers seemed very good. I think I am still too close to the story as I had some very up and down feelings about the show. The first film summaries the first season which covers 20 30 minutes episodes. It is hard to condense 10 hours of story and character development into 103 minute movie. At one point in the movie where Aang is in a Earth Nation Prison Camp there was a big disconnect in a scene. The martial arts expert, Noah Ringer, who plays Aang was not a strong presence in the film. Notably, the actors playing Uncle Iroh and Sokka did a great job, as did Katara. The actor playing Admiral Zhou did not give enough depth and menace to his character. Appa was great and Momo was a nice touch. Overall I was a bit disappointed but my movie buddy who has never seen the cartoon and knows nothing about the story really enjoyed it.

    No bad language, no extreme violence, blood or gore.
    "When life gives you lemons, squirt lemon juice in your enemy's eyes."

  2. #2
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    Re: The Last Airbender

    I've read a couple of reviews, most were not too nice but the one I think I agree with most said that the costumes were great, the actors did a good job, the fight scenes were brilliant, Appa and Momo were spot on. In fact the world created was wonderful, especially the Air Temple and the Northern Water Tribe city. It was some of the direction and script that was lacking and here we can lay it all at the director's feet.

    Hopefully the film will do well enough worldwide to continue the live action movies but with a different director.
    "When life gives you lemons, squirt lemon juice in your enemy's eyes."

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    Kao
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    Re: The Last Airbender

    I'm a firm believer in voting with my feet. I'm passing on this one for a variety of reasons.

    I really hope in the future this series gets a reboot with a different director AND cast. And I'm definitely going to support the new project that the original creators are working on (which will deal with more of the Airbender universe, YAY).

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    Re: The Last Airbender

    Quote Originally Posted by Kao;3967565;
    I'm a firm believer in voting with my feet. I'm passing on this one for a variety of reasons.

    I really hope in the future this series gets a reboot with a different director AND cast. And I'm definitely going to support the new project that the original creators are working on (which will deal with more of the Airbender universe, YAY).
    There is a new Airbender project? Please tell.
    "When life gives you lemons, squirt lemon juice in your enemy's eyes."

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    Re: The Last Airbender

    The creators of Avatar: The Last Airbender are in the process of creating a new series that will be called Avatar: The Legend of Korro.

    http://youbentmywookie.com/entertain...confirmed-9311

    Rumors Of New ‘Avatar: The Last Airbender’ Animated Series Confirmed
    Posted by MM on June 28th, 2010
    (+1 rating, 1 votes)
    Loading ... Loading ...

    According to TVTango on May 22nd, Twitter Viacom had trademarked some papers for a new “Avatar: The Last Airbedner” TV Series.

    The tweet read:
    “AVATAR: THE LAST AIRBENDER coming back as new TV series on Nickelodeon? 4 days ago Viacom filed papers to trademark AVATAR: LEGEND OF KORRA.”

    Today we have official confirmation that a possible new “Avatar” series is returning from Racebending who had the chance to speak with the show’s creators at the “Avatar: The Last Airbender – The Art of the Animated Series” signing last weekend at Golden Apple Comics in Los Angeles.

    “Avatar” creators Mike DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko couldn’t say anything at the signing, but confirmed “Korra” and told Racebending that an announcement will be made soon.

    Sooner than Comic-Con they asked?

    “Sooner than that, hopefully,” says DiMartino.

    There ya go. Rumors squashed!
    I also hope that the planned movie trilogy continues. The Twilight series is a perfect example what a new director can do with the material.
    "When life gives you lemons, squirt lemon juice in your enemy's eyes."

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    Re: The Last Airbender

    I have been reading some reviews and especially about M. Night Shymalan and the consesus is that while a competent director, Shymalan tries to do it all; write, adapt, produce and direct. If he would just stick to directing he wouldn't be sliding all the way down to the bottom. Speilburg learned not to try to do it all and he is considered one of the most successful directors of our times. Too bad Shymalan can't say the same.

    A positive review:

    Just One Thing in Defense of 'The Last Airbender' - Cinematical

    Just One Thing in Defense of 'The Last Airbender'
    by Eugene Novikov Jul 6th 2010 // 1:02PM

    Filed under: Sci-Fi & Fantasy, New Releases, Family Films

    Look, I may be the last remaining Shyamalan fanboy in the blogosphere, but even I'm not going to defend The Last Airbender. It pretty much blows. It plays like some sort of hippie elementary school Christmas pageant. The dialogue isn't just bad, it calls into question Shyamalan's proficiency in the English language. (Personal favorite: "We believe in our beliefs as much as they believe in theirs.") Noah Ringer's performance should make everyone appreciate the difference between genuinely talented child actors and merely photogenic kids. I cannot tell a lie: the movie is a stilted, overexpository bore.

    But I have to dissent from one aspect of the pile-on, and that is the seemingly universal impression that The Last Airbender is ugly. Roger Ebert calls the special effects "atrocious," and the film " the drabbest, darkest, dingiest movie of any sort I've seen in years." A.O. Scott calls it "muddy" and "graceless." Ty Burr references "shockingly dingy camerawork." And so on.

    Some, though not all, of these complaints have to do with the by-all-accounts-awful 3-D retrofit. I'm not qualified to quibble with that assessment. But what's getting lost here is that, when seen the way Shyamalan intended -- in two glorious dimensions -- The Last Airbender is gorgeous and painstakingly composed, with the same measured attention to detail the filmmaker displayed in his previous work. The effects are fantastic, every shot gleams, and what Shyamalan does with framing and focus sets the movie apart (at least visually) from the artless, efficient blockbusters we see week after week.


    It is also a bad-ass action film. I found the one-take fight scenes staggering, a beautiful alternative to the edited-to-a-pulp mish-mash action that we usually see. Noah Ringer is a terrible actor, but I can see why Shyamalan cast him: his ability to do at least some of these stunts allowed the director to compose fluid, lucid action set pieces without having to edit around the star. This aspect of Airbender is being widely downplayed.

    Again. no dispute that: (1) The Last Airbender pretty much sucks, and (2) that 3-D "up-conversion" is an abomination of near-Biblical proportions. But in two dimensions, the movie looks fantastic, and visually at least, Shyamalan's still got it
    "When life gives you lemons, squirt lemon juice in your enemy's eyes."

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    Re: The Last Airbender

    I too fell in love with the cartoon (thanks to my daughter.. ) and i was saddened to hear who was putting the live action movie out. I too have decided to NOT see it in theaters and wait till DvD.

    However, news of a new stroy line gets more than giddy! Even if it is 100 years in the future.
    Last edited by FireWoman; 07-10-2010 at 12:09 PM.
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    Re: The Last Airbender

    I was reading some viewer comments on moviefone.com and was surprised to find that the director, M Night Shyamalan did change the way the characters names were pronounced to sound more Asian. Huh? Why would you do something like that? I wondered why they kept pronouncing Uncle Iroh's name incorrectly. So instead of casting Asian actors to play the parts, he changes the way the we fans have heard the names pronounced on the TV series to the supposedly correct Asian pronunciation so the film would feel more Asian. That kind of logic is severely whacked. Please Nickelodeon break your contract with this nutcase and save the series. This man should never, ever touch a script again and try to adapt it in his lifetime.
    "When life gives you lemons, squirt lemon juice in your enemy's eyes."

  9. #9
    Kao
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    Re: The Last Airbender

    I don't know what he was smoking because the way the names are in the series are the way they are supposed to be pronounced. He also changed the real Kanji (that you can see on notes, on buildings, etc in the series) to scribblish designs. I've been studying Japanese for the past 3 years and this is one of my biggest pet peeves (and it happens more often than you would think, especially with packaging). It's not decorative; it's a writing system!

    During the casting project, a girl who was a dead ringer for Katara auditioned and knocked everyone dead. M. Night had the last word on casting, and he overruled everyone else and cast the other girl because he owed her parents (who have some pull in the business) "a favor." I've seen the casting call sheets for the principal roles, and let's just say he was NEVER looking for characters that remotely resembled the cartoon characters. The only reason Dev was cast was because M. Night's original choice (who is probably thanking his lucky stars) dropped out and he thought that casting Dev would shut people up. The casting sheet they put out for the extras was even worse! Terrible.

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    Re: The Last Airbender

    Quote Originally Posted by Kao;3980962;
    I don't know what he was smoking because the way the names are in the series are the way they are supposed to be pronounced. He also changed the real Kanji (that you can see on notes, on buildings, etc in the series) to scribblish designs. I've been studying Japanese for the past 3 years and this is one of my biggest pet peeves (and it happens more often than you would think, especially with packaging). It's not decorative; it's a writing system!

    During the casting project, a girl who was a dead ringer for Katara auditioned and knocked everyone dead. M. Night had the last word on casting, and he overruled everyone else and cast the other girl because he owed her parents (who have some pull in the business) "a favor." I've seen the casting call sheets for the principal roles, and let's just say he was NEVER looking for characters that remotely resembled the cartoon characters. The only reason Dev was cast was because M. Night's original choice (who is probably thanking his lucky stars) dropped out and he thought that casting Dev would shut people up. The casting sheet they put out for the extras was even worse! Terrible.

    Thanks for clearing that up Kao and for providing other usefull tidbits. I understand that sometimes you have to have creative control over projects because too many fingers in the pot just mess things up but it is obvious that M. Night can't do everything well. I have heard constantly that M. Night can't handle criticism of his work but he needs to sticks to his strengths and casting, writing and producing are not his strengths, seems that his ego gets in the way.
    "When life gives you lemons, squirt lemon juice in your enemy's eyes."

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