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DVD Shopping Bag: Avatar Blu-ray

7 Stupid Questions for Cameron

By Robert T. Trate     April 27, 2010


After all the hype, the awards and not winning the big award Avatar has finally come to Blu-ray and DVD. There has been so much hoopla about this film it is difficult to know where to begin. I could say the highest grossing film of all time is just Dances with Wolves (or FernGully). Without a doubt you have either heard that comparison or realized it yourself. Perhaps we could discuss the initial wave of people who blogged about how they wish life on Earth was more like that on Pandora. Hey I want to live in a galaxy that existed a long time ago and far, far away. Who am I to look down on those nuts people? Nope I’ll stick to my own little world of the DVD Shopping Bag and what Avatar brought me to.
Comic Con to Home Theater
One of the many perks of working for Mania is that you get the chance to see films and footage early on. I reported back in July for the site on the Comic Con screening of Avatar. I saw the great man himself, James Cameron, introduce us to Pandora (after about 500 Twilight fans left the building first, see piece). I was excited too because it had been forever and a day since Cameron released a film. To see the cast and get that first look was a fan boy’s dream. Perhaps the hype leading to that moment was too much. I was left wondering, was that it? Dances with Wolves? I did go to Avatar Day and thought the trailer looked good but outside of one or two clips almost everything was the same from Comic Con. I was there opening night. Afterward I thought the film was good but didn’t think that it changed movies for the better. Yes, it will change the way we make movies but as stories go I had been there and done that. Sitting in the confines of my own home, and watching it on Blu-ray I did marvel at the wonder of Avatar maybe a little more than before but I was left with a few more questions and new observations.
7 Stupid Questions for Mr. Cameron:
1. Why does Jake’s avatar have a cat’s nose but Grace’s has a human’s?
2. Do you honestly believe the fist bump will survive that far into the future?
3. If the richest site of unobtanium is under Home Tree and it took 3 months to get the crew there, why aren’t the humans mining the site immediately after the Na’vi run off?
4. Wouldn’t the Na’vi or Eywa (the super tree) know that the humans were cutting a path through the jungle for 3 months? After all everything on Pandora is connected, right?
5. Why did Neytiri change her hair style and clothes 2 times after her home was destroyed?
6. Do you really think that nobody has seen Aliens? The mano a mano fight at the end was little too similar.
7. What would you pick: a hot babe girlfriend and a pet flying dragon or life in a wheel chair?
“Absolutely Bad Ass”:
One of the best things about seeing the cast and crew of Avatar at Comic Con was Stephen Lang. He has an absolutely commanding presence and one that is perfectly mirrored in the welcome to Pandora scene. While watching the film for my second time and last until the ultimate edition comes out, I started to root for his Colonel Miles Quaritch. Without a doubt Cameron does bad guys perfectly. The Alien Queen is perhaps maybe his greatest creation but Quaritch is a close second. Much like Billy Zane’s Cal in Titanic, further viewings of Avatar will have me cheering for the bad guy.  
Special Featureless:
My final thought to you our loyal Maniacs is this: don’t buy this DVD or Blu-ray. This isn’t a knock on the film at all. Already there will be another version of Avatar hitting theaters in August with 6 extra minutes. There are no special features or deleted scenes on this Blu-ray. In fact it is so bare bones I would compare it to my Stroker Ace DVD that just has a play and scenes menu. That was one of the first movies on DVD and Avatar is the highest grossing film of all time, so WTF? Not even a trailer? Oh yeah there will be another version and probably another version after that. Why so greedy FOX and Cameron? Most of the world loves this film; why not give the people what they want?
Across The Plains ~ Jack Randall
Armageddon [Blu-ray] ~ Bruce Willis, Billy Bob Thornton, Ben Affleck, and Liv Tyler
Cheyenne Rides Again ~ Tom Tyler
District 13: Ultimatum ~ Cyril Raffaelli, David Belle, Philippe Torreton, and Daniel Duval
District 13: Ultimatum [Blu-ray]
Doc & Stagecoach
Euro-Fantastico: No Survivors Please & The Black Cobra (1963) ~ Maria Perschy, Robert Cunningham, U. Friedrichsen, and Karen Blanguernon
Evelyn & Betrayed
Fighting Texan ~ Kermit Maynard
Five Minutes of Heaven ~ Liam Neeson
Five Minutes of Heaven [Blu-ray]
The Gallant Hours
Gambling Terror ~ Johnny Mack Brown
Greydon Clark Drive-In Double Feature: Hi-Riders & The Bad Bunch ~ Mel Ferrer, Stephen McNally, Darby Hinton, and Neville Brand
Hidden Camera ~ Dean Cain
Hong Kong Godfather (Shaw Brothers) ~ Leung Kar-yan
The Jackal (Combo Blu-ray and Standard DVD) [Blu-ray] ~ Bruce Willis, Richard Gere, and Sidney Poitier
The Mystery of Sherlock Holmes
Opium and the Kung-Fu Master (Shaw Brothers) ~ Shen Chan, Kuan Tai Chen, Miao Ching, and Pei Chi Huang
Perfect Victims ~ Jesse Bradford, Sienne Guillory, Scot Williams, and Emily Hamilton
Reflections ~ Timothy Hutton
Ride 'Em Cowgirl ~ Dorothy Page, Vince Barnett, and Milton Frome
Rustler's Paradise ~ Harry Carey
Texas Rangers: Gangsters of the Frontier ~ Tex Ritter
Thunder In Carolina ~ Rory Calhoun, Alan Hale, and Connie Hines
Tombstone [Blu-ray] ~ Kurt Russell, Val Kimer, Sam Elliott, and Bill Paxton
Twisted Rails ~ Jack Donovan
Voyeur ~ Phil Austin
Without Trace ~ Antonio Sabato
Gintama: Collection 1 (2pc) (Ws Sub)
Magic Knight Rayearth Season 1 - Remastered Volumes 1- 4, Eps. 1-20 ~ Hekiru Shiima
Naruto Uncut Season 2 Vol. 2 Box Set
Rurouni Kenshin: Complete Series (22pc) (Full)
Venus Ranger: Complete Collection (Unrated)
G.I. Joe A Real American Hero: Season Two ~ Michael Bell, Frank Welker, and Chris Latta
Spectacular Spider-Man, Vol. 8
Criterion Collection
Fugitive Kind (Criterion Collection) ~ Marlon Brando, Joanne Woodward, Anna Magnani, and Maureen Stapleton
Ride with the Devil (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] ~ Tobey Maguire, Skeet Ulrich, Jewel Kilcher, and Jeremy W. Auman
Ride With the Devil (The Criterion Collection)
The Descent: Part 2 ~ Michael J. Reynolds, Shauna Macdonald, and Jessika Williams
The Fear Chamber ~ Richard Tyson, Steven Williams, and Rhett Giles
Legend of the Witches
Marked ~ Samuel Child, Mark Colson, Tony Suraci, and Tara Carroll
Megapiranha ~ Tiffany, Paul Logan, and Barry Williams
Passed the Door of Darkness ~ Mark Colson, Matthew John Prater, and James M. Connor
Spirit ~ Ashley Bryant, Megan Braithwaite, Kimberley Zagoren, and Chris Duncan
Sympathy ~ Marina Shtelen, Aaron Boucher, and Steven Pritchard
Transylmania ~ Patrick Cavanaugh
Anna to the Infinite Power ~ Martha Byrne, Dinah Merrill, Mark Patton, and Jack Gilford
Battle Planet ~ Zack Ward, Brea Grant, Jason Miller, and Kevin Thompson
Disgrace ~ John Malkovich, Natalie Becker, Antoinette Engel, and Antonio Fisher
District B13/District 13: Ultimatum 2-Pack [Blu-ray] ~ Cyril Raffaelli, David Belle, Philippe Torreton, and Daniel Duval
Dune [Blu-ray] ~ Kyle MacLachlan, Virginia Madsen, Francesca Annis, and Leonardo Cimino
Four Twenty-One
The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus ~ Heath Ledger, Christopher Plummer, Johnny Depp, and Jude Law
The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus [Blu-ray]
Ghost Hunters: Season Five, Part Two ~ Jason Hawes, Grant Wilson, Steve Gonsalves, and Dave Tango
It's Garry Shandling's Show: The Complete First Season ~ Garry Shandling, Molly Cheek, and Michael Tucci
Survivors: Complete Original Series 1975-1977 ~ Lucy Fleming, Ian McCulloch, Denis Lill, and Stephen Dudley
Survivors: Complete Seasons One & Two ~ Max Beesley, Zoe Tapper, Robyn Addison, and Julie Graham
Tales From the Darkside: Seasons 1-3 ~ John Marzilli
Tales From the Darkside: Season Three ~ John Marzilli
Comedy Parade - Rediscovered Classic: What Ho Romeo (1929) / Dental Follies (1937) / Rhythm In A Night Court (1934) / Hotel Anchovy (1934) / The Memory Lingers On (1935) ~ Pinky Lee, Ritz Brothers, and Jack Benny
Four Classic Silent Westerns: Ruse (1915) / Arizona Wooing (1915) / Out West (1921) / The Great Train Robbery (1903) ~ William S. Hart, Tom Mix, and Jimmy Adams
Lost Silent Classics Collection: The Danger Girl (1916) / Teddy at the Throttle (1917) / A Hash House Fraud (1915) ~ Gloria Swanson, Louise Fazenda, and Keystone Kops
The Shrek Trilogy
Vintage Hollywood Murder Mysteries: Murder By Invitation (1941) / Murder At Glen Athol (1932) / Wayne Murder Case (1932) / Murder On The Campus (1934) / Murder In The Museum (1934) (5-DVD) ~ Dwight Frye, June Clyde, Regis Toomey, and Charles Starrett
Robert Trate writes two weekly columns for Mania the DVD Shopping Bag and the Toy Maniac. Robert also participates in a pod cast that reviews movies, comics and celebrates all things geek. Check it out at You’ve Got Geek on You.com.


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Miner49er 4/27/2010 12:04:42 AM

If George Lucas is a Sith Lord. James Cameron is his apprentice. (or Fox could be the Sith lord). The cow must be giving plenty of milk.

StarlightGuard 4/27/2010 4:22:36 AM

Do you really think that nobody has seen Aliens?

I haven't! Never really was interested in it.

And, oh yes, forgive me great and powerful movie lord for I did buy this -- on the day of its release. Yeah I knew what I was getting myself into, with the special features being saved for a future day (I do read mania, after all) and such. I just hadn't seen it and I'm not a person who rents movies. I'm very glad to say  95% of the movies I do get I do end up liking. I've only regretted two dvd purchases -- the Trek reboot (damn you Jarrod) and "Not Another Teen Movie."

...I saw the great man himself, James Cameron, introduce us to Pandora (after about 500 Twilight fans left the building first...

Next time (if there is a next time) smuggle me in and I'll be there for Breaking Dawn and you can go roam the floor until Avatar 2, 3, and 4 are being announced.

EagleManiac 4/27/2010 5:13:23 AM

StarlightGuard......I hope you're kidding about Aliens. If you're not, then by all means, go get the DVD today! IMO Aliens is a better movie than Avatar! But, I still bought my Avatar DVD yesterday.

Hobbs 4/27/2010 7:41:24 AM

lol Rob...I hope you are ready for all the hate mail after that review.  Anytime anyone says one thing thats not positive about Avatar on Mania they are branded a hater. 

themovielord 4/27/2010 8:01:28 AM

I don't hate it. I really hate how cheap this Blu-ray is but that was to be expected on its first release. ~ Robert

boxker 4/27/2010 8:25:11 AM

I can understand rooting for the "Bad Guy" in Avatar but also for Cal in Titanic, that's absurd. That guy was an idiot.

Wyldstaar 4/27/2010 9:14:36 AM

Most hit movies have great features on their first blu-ray release, so I don't know where you got that notion.  Even movies that were merely profitable get packed with extras.  Every new release blu-ray I've picked up so far has had loads of cool stuff in it. 

karas1 4/27/2010 9:24:57 AM

Avatar was a good enough film but I think it would lose about 70% of it's impact without the 3D and huge screen.  I didn't see it in I-Max, but the screen in my local cineplex was pretty huge and the 3D effects really did make me feel like I was in the middle of the movie.

At home on a 19" screen it just wouldn't have the same impact.  I might see it again in the theater, but no way am I buying it to see at home.

Starlight, I very rarely buy any movie I haven't already seen and know I like.  Otherwise you're just wasting your money.

krathwardroid 4/27/2010 12:00:08 PM

I'll buy Avatar on DVD, but I'll wait until the extended cut is released before I do. I saw the movie in both standard 2D and 3D. It was good either way.

karas1: I bought a DVD once without having seen the movie. It was Constantine. I ended up liking the movie. It was a slight gamble. The previews did the film justice.

whiteandnerdy75 4/27/2010 12:02:22 PM

I'm glad everyone realized the crap Cameron and entourage are pulling with this release.  Number One movie of all time and NO SPECIAL FEATURES!!!???  Do you think I'm stupid?  I'm not gonna waste twenty bucks just so you can release a Collector's Edition and then an Ultimate Edition later on down the road!  I'm really sick of this.  Same thing with 'Terminator: Salvation".  If you're going to release a special edition at just ONE lousy store I've got two words for you:  SCREW YOU!  Some of us don't live in place where EVERY store is just around the corner.  Especially here in Walmart's state.  I have to drive forty minutes to find a Target! 

And how do you express your disdain about this stuff so it changes?  I mean, with all the money this film companies make, how does one person not buying a DVD or complaining amount to anything?  They'll just keep on milking us...

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