Sunday, November 28, 2010

Avatar Blu-ray & More New Blu-ray Reviews

20th Century Fox
Rating 5 (out of five)

While it's not quite a classic movie in my book, Fox has put together such an irresistible three-disc box set that it deserves five stars.

As well as the original theatrical release and special edition re-release, Fox includes a three-hour extended cut with 16 minutes of additional footage.

And get this -- there's more than eight hours of extras, including a feature-length documentary, cast and crew interviews, 17 "making of" featurettes, more than 45 minutes of deleted scenes and an image gallery containing more than 600 slides. If you buy little Johnny this for Christmas, don't expect to see him much before New Year's.

The special effects rule in this story of greedy humans (that's us) at war with nature-loving humanoid aliens called the Na'vi for the resources of their beautiful planet Pandora. Marine Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) uses an "avatar" body that makes him look like the Na'vi so he can infiltrate and spy on them.

Slowly enlightened by the Na'vi customs -- and entranced by his female teacher, Neytiri (Zoe Saldana) -- Scully "goes native" and is soon fighting his own side, which is led by the nasty Col. Miles Quaritch (Stephen Lang). The plot sounds familiar because it's Dances With Wolves set in the far future. Naturally, it looks fantastic in high definition, though all the digital magic makes it look a little unreal. No matter, it's a spectacle that all fans will want -- particularly those with a decent home theatre setup.

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