Thursday night, 'The Matt' and I went to the theater to see The Last Airbender, a movie by M. Night Shyamalan.
Before attending, co-workers (non-fans of the Nickelodeon show) told me that the acting just plain sucks. And yes, I can see that. I was writhing in agony during the first part of the movie because of all the horrid acting.
But then, I had a thought. This *was* ripped from a cartoon. Listening to the dialogue and imagining the words spilling from animated characters helped a lot. It's just one of those things that doesn't cross over well to a live action film.
Now the worst attributes of the movie were a couple things. One... the altered pronunciation of the names. I don't care if it's more accurate or less accurate, keep the damn names the same. Aang was pronounced Ong, instead of the long 'A' sound as in Nick's series. Sokka was said SOAK-UH instead of SOCK-UH. Those were the only two which stood out even more because those two characters were the most changed in becoming *real* people. Aang was no longer a fun loving kid. He was numb. Sort of void. Then Sokka, whose facial expressions and squeaky voice made him so loveable... well, all that was gone. He became even more pointless.
Zuko was my favorite of the show and remained so in the movie. They didn't demonize him, at all. Which, being the 'bad guy' is an easy thing to do. However!!!! They did give him hair. Which, ya know, he didn't have in the beginning. He got that later. Duh!
There were no Asians. (Okay, so a few) And I laugh at that because the show was inspired by anime and yet they did everything to keep that out of your mind. Perhaps it would have gone over better if it had been portrayed with that vision... but yeah, that's just a thought.
There was a lot of narration, especially during some parts where it was used to 'fast forward' so that we could jump through the meeting process of the northern water tribe. Also understandable, it did bug me.
The best part of this film were the effects *and* the artistry in the movements as they bended their elements. Now, I have no background whatsoever in the martial arts, so I can't offer much from that point of view but what I saw was GORGEOUS!
Shyamalan does make his famous one-per-movie appearance which is always a cute add in.
Overall, the show is so much better. It's a nice try. Definitely worth telling the whole story. But... I have a difficult time believing people that are not familiar with the show are going to truly adore this movie, its characters, or its plot line.
So uh, yep, that's my lowdown. XD