For the record, Avatar (1) is fine. It was beautiful to watch on the big screen, and the first go through is just good enough to let you suspend your disbelief for the duration of the movie. Barely. And then on your drive home, or your talk with the friends after watching it, the story completely falls apart. It still was probably worth what you paid for it, but it is very much a one-and-done.
Any sequel seems to be doomed to follow the path of the Matrix sequels: the visuals will no longer be new/unique, and the weak elements of the plot and underdeveloped characters will become that much more glaring by comparison as they try to repeat the formula. And they’re going to have the same problem - they have to explain why all all of this matters! Everything was pretty much settled with the first, so making a new big bad or reintroducing the old big bad is going to probably require more explanatory that the story ever supported.
Still, I’ll probably see it on the big screen because I expect it to be fun. Even at current prices, $12-14 for 2 hours of fun isn’t bad. But like the first, it almost certainly won’t be something I’ll ever buy a copy of.
As far as what was explicity said in the movie, more or less, everything was settled.
What was not explicitly mentioned, I don’t think, but comes up with a bit of backstory research, is that there were a few interstellar ships making the journey back and forth. Which means at least another one is inbound.
If they are not allowed to land, at the very least to refurbish for the return journey, then everyone onboard is sentenced to death. Further, even if they are allowed to refit and return to Earth, Earth may not accept its loss of access to “unobtanium” to a bunch of primitive natives.
Now, that does mean that the next movie is much less interesting, as it consists of planetary bombardment and sterilization of the surface, followed up by mining without any impediment from the local fauna.
Now now, I did mention it all falls apart after watching it, but we shouldn’t refight that (easy) battle here.
I don’t think that’s what we’re saying though - it can and may well be an amazing hit, but it be remembered, if at all, for the visual spectacle, not for the story or characters in any way. People talk, for example, about what worked in Aliens, and how while it was a very different movie from Alien, it was equally impressive in it’s own way.
When people talk about Avatar (and largely they don’t), they talk about the 3d visual effects. And that’s it. Doesn’t mean it wasn’t a huge hit.
After it came out, I spent a whole lot of time talking about it. It was so close to being a really good movie. Change a half a dozen lines and one scene, and it could have been something that people talked about in the same sorts of ways as they did Aliens. People who have never seen Aliens still have heard, and maybe even use, a number of choice quotes from the movie. What line from Avatar made it out of the movie and into the public zeitgeist?
It was talked about in its first year, mainly for the visuals and how it caused every trash movie to have a 3D version kludged on. And the previously mentioned cringe-articles about people’s lives being empty if they can’t live on Pandora. After that, it quickly dropped off. Which seems weird for biggest hit of all time, etc but I guess it was ultimately more theme park ride than lasting cinema. I couldn’t quote a single line from it today which obviously isn’t the case with the real impactful sci-fi properties.
Not excited. Didn’t see the first one, and I can’t imagine the circumstances that would cause me to watch a sequel. I’m not a Cameron fan – pretty pictures with paperdoll thin characters and very melodramatic Snidley Whiplash villains.
The problem this movie is going to have is having to keep aesthetically consistent with a pure CGI movie from 13 years ago. Avatar looked gorgeous when it came out, and frankly that was the only thing going for it since the story was just a dumpster fire. Today you can get better CGI in a video game cut scene.
I really like James Cameron as a director (loved Titanic!) but there was something about Avatar that never really interested me (a bit too much pure fantasy? I dunno). I still haven’t seen it despite many opportunities to do so. So no, not excited about the sequel.