More About Avatar and Race

Dec 19, 2009 · 1985 views

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“Whether Avatar is racist is a matter for debate. Regardless of where you come down on that question, it’s undeniable that the film – like alien apartheid flick District 9, released earlier this year – is emphatically […]

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  1. Great question! I think we all fantasize though about being someone else, transcending our own identity. Curly haired people straighten out their hair sometimes, and people with straight hair get perms.

  2. Cray, thanks for reposting Annalee Newitz’s incisive critique of this film. I’ve been in a mild state of disorientation (call me naive, call me disconnected, call me a total fool) about an aggressive, dismissive post yesterday in response to my discussion of Avatar and Latinos on this site. So I really appreciate your taking up this issue and suggesting the obvious (if you agree with Newitz) – that this film, as most Hollywood films, works on the same racial power dynamic that affects our society, and that films like Avatar are a staging ground for fantasies about social issues. And since Hollywood is a white-controlled and white-dominated industry, those fantasies (like the ones expressed in Paul Haggis’s absolutely dreadful film Crash (2004)), are often the fantasies of white people.

  3. Avatar dc_gay_man says:

    The article’s argument collapses given Michelle Rodriguez tough chick role in the film.

    I think the broader theme of the film was the stereotypical real world (aka the military, the corporate interest, the scientist) vs the more naturalistic (yet CGI illusion) world.

    The effect is clever to get the audience to appreciate CGI and the technologies effect. I was pulled into the Na’vi world quite quickly. That’s clever directing.

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