Tuesday, December 22, 2009

AVATAR & James Cameron

We saw Avatar on Sunday. I'd read a few reviews praising the movie to the highest, and thought we ought not to miss it. We had a few reservations because James Cameron's movies are not always to our taste (eg Terminator I and II, Rambo.....)

Avatar is long, 2 hours 40 minutes. I doubt it will be a classic in the way 2001 A Space Odyssey is a classic - I can watch that movie again and again and never tire of it, for me that's the definition of "a classic". Avatar is visually beautiful in parts, and the skills behind the CGI and special effects are wondrous. 3D is used to its best advantage, not overdone. The depiction of plants on alien planet Pandora reminded me a lot of some Dale Chihuly installations we've seen - I wonder if the artist who designed these was influenced by Chihuly (a brilliant artist in glass)?

Though visually lovely the movie's dialogue is full of painfully trite 20th century cliches, as is some of the characterisation. Cameron spent an obscene amount of dosh on this movie ($300 million?) He could surely have engaged someone to write imaginative dialogue to match the visuals. In the 22nd century, 2154, when the story is set, I very much doubt that anybody will still sound exactly like John Wayne and comic book characters from the 20th century. I also doubt that someone will still be smoking cigarettes. For goodness sake! Talk about anachronistic! One more thing: those dreadful mechanical steel killing machines on legs, driven by a human - the idea is getting very old and needs a serious re-think!

Apart from those complaints, we enjoyed the spectacle, and the very clear analogies presented, in some cases rather ham-fistedly - but Cameron means well. I'll not expand on that here.

Avatar, when compared with the best of science fiction verges on tacky and gamey (computer gamey), but compared with other pure fantasy movies I've seen - it's out ahead of them.

James Cameron then - let's have a look at his natal chart. Born 16 August 1954 in Kapuskasing, Ontario, Canada. Time of birth unknown, so the rising sign and exact Moon position shown here isn't accurate.

Cameron is reported as being obsessive, workaholic, perfectionist, "hell on wheels", cruel, demanding, has "an explosive temper", uncompromising, dictatorial. He has been married five times.
Cameron's view? "What people call obsession or passion, for me it's just a work ethic. I think it comes from an insecurity that I'm not good enough." (Here) .

Sun (self) conjunct Pluto in Leo- need I say more? Mercury is close too. Pluto = passion and obsession. In addition Mars, planet of energy and aggression in excess-driven Sagittarius is in harmonious trine to his natal Sun/Pluto. Neptune, planet of creativity and illusion with connection to photography and film, lies in Libra in helpful sextile to Sun/Pluto. Cameron is said to be a talented artist as well as magical movie maker. His Moon in Pisces(unless he was born very close to the end of 16th August) is ruled by Neptune and key to a highly fertile imagination. Moon almost certainly trines Uranus, planet of all that is futuristic - sending that imagination reeling into the future.

But where's the feeling of insecurity he mentions? I don't see it, but perhaps his time of birth would provide a hint, showing us where his natal planets fall in relation to the angles of the chart. There are no grounding planets in Earth signs -could a feeling of insecurity stem from that? I don't know. Saturn, planet of structure is without major aspect, perhaps that holds a clue. The driving force of Sagittarian Mars in trine to Sun/Pluto in Leo could bring about a feeling of never being able to do enough - I suspect that could be at the root of his insecurity.


Candela said...

Actually, I wasn't expecting a lot of the movie, but the reviews from people who've already seen it (it opened last weekend here) have been surpricingly positive. Most aren't, of course, as interested in scifi I am (must be the Virgo rising/Mercury, all people really into scifi I know have Virgo, Aquarius or both on their charts). But I'd also see the flick solely on bases of Sam Worthington - he was basicly the only thing keeping me from walking out after the forst 15 minutes of "Terminator Salvation". I used to date a guy who is only a couple of days older, and there's the strong Leo stellium on that chart (including Sun conjunct Saturn). Some question about where Mr. Worthington's Moon is, but I'd bet Scorpio over Libra.

Wisewebwoman said...

Ah! The King of the World rises again.

It is on my list of movies to see, if it ever comes this way, as reviews have been favourable.

However, like you, I have difficulty with the monosyllabic reduction of dialogue these days - geared, no doubt, to the average age of the movie goer with a double digit IQ. Unfortunate, but box office receipts are the reward.


Twilight said...

Candela ~~~ Sam W. did a good job with his character I guess, though for a lot of the time he's speaking through his avatar, which might not be what his fans would prefer.

Yes, it's getting very good reviews. If one forgets sci-fi proper and concentrates on the movie as a spectacular fantasy only, then I'd agree with most of them. :-)

Twilight said...

WWW ~~~ Agreed, it seems that a general dumbing down has reached the cinema in full force now, after flooding US TV for some years. There are still a few gems to be found though. :-)

Anonymous said...

has anyone tried to understand the shady reference to the indigo generation?

r4 dsi said...

Avtar movie was really nice i like it's special effects...The only film capable of surpassing Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen as the Fanboy Fave of 2009, James Cameron's massively hyped Avatar at least differs from Michael Bay's boondoggle in that it's, you know, entertaining.

Twilight said...

Anonymous ~~~ Hi! Oh - you mean because the Pandoran people had blue skin? You know that hadn't occurred to me at all! I can't decide whether it was an intended reference to indigo children or not. Hmmmmm. I haven't seen any reviewer mention it, but then reviewers aren't usually into New Agey stuff such as the idea of indigo kids. Thanks for mentioning that, I'll give it some thought. :-)

Twilight said...

r4dsi ~~ Hi there! Yes, it certainly was entertaining. What film-makers can do nowadays with special effects is absolutely mind-blowing. :-)

Jordan said...

I rectified his chart years ago when Titanic came out and based on his number of marriage partners, events, his amazing artistic abilities, etc. he definitely fits libra rising, i have been using 10:40 am EST which would put Uranus exactly on the MC in the 10 house. Ceres would be on the Ascendant with Neptune very close to the ascendant on the first house side. His moon would be at 22 pisces in the fifth house.

Twilight said...

Jordan ~ Hi! Thank you for your inout. Yes, I especially like the Moon/Neptune trine for him.
Libra rising? Well, I suppose we don't really know enough about him personality-wise to know whether it fits. From what I read, in his professional life he's not very diplomatic, or charming, rather more obsessive, which smacks of Scorpio, but in private life he could be quite different. :-)

Jordan said...

In my experience from doing thousands of charts over the years, it is a total myth that libra risings are charming, diplomatic, need i bring up that hitler was a taurus-aries cusp with libra rising. Also keep in mind Cameron has Uranus on the MC exactly if i am right, and Uranians can be total aholes and very despotic, and if you have done any research about Jupiter being in the Gauquelin sectors of the chart, in Cameron's case being near the MC as well, the Gauqulin's research showed Jupiter in those sectors is the classic nazi aspect. Most of the Nazis had Jupiter either rising in the 12 house or conjunct in the first house. Or conjunct the MC from the 10 house or a big swath of the 9 house. Jupiter culminating is where he gets his nazi like behaviour and as well as having Uranus on the MC exactly opposite Chiron. Keep all these things in mind. All these point to my being right. As well he totally has Neptune rising which is why he creates all these self-contained worlds. Dreamy, black or white worlds, where you're either all good or all bad.

Twilight said...

Jordan ~ I have to bow to your much wider experience of charts, of course. But if Libra rising doesn't follow text-book Libra descriptions shouldn't astrologers be updating things a bit? I ask with a sincere need to know! The only negative thing they have to say about Libra is "indecisive". The Via Combusta and its bad reputation is in part of Libra - perhaps this is something to consider?

As for Jupiter - yes, I can see how it can relate to despots - in fact I wrote something recently asking why it hasn't gathered the reputation of being a destroyer rather than such a benign influence.

Thanks once more for you valuable input. :-)

Jordan said...

Thanks for being open-minded to my ideas. Astrology like everything else in life is often subjective, what works for me, and for most of us our sun sign feeds many of our most cherished biases, may not work for anyone else but my own sun sign. But anyway if you want to know how I rectify charts, I have many and use many tools. Midpoints, transits to big events, synastry between marriage partners or significant others, progressed charts for big events, and on and on. But if you know nothing about the Gauquelin's (Michelle and Francois)and their research you really should buy some books buy them as I find it invaluable in analysing charts. it goes way beyond simple cook book astrology.
By the way one thing I have noticed and that helps me figure out pople is by what planets are in the Gauquelin sectors. Those planets, especially if they are within 6 degrees of the ascendant on the first house side and a big chunk of the 12th house, or culminating within 6 degrees of the MC on the 10th house side or a big chunk of the 9th house, any planets there will be magnified like 10 times. So for example let's say you have Venus there you will be very Venusian, I knew one gal who regularly spends 300 to 400 bucks getting her hair done! Or like me for example, I have Cancer rising with Pisces MC and Mercury conjunct on the 10th house side in Pisces, and I am very much mercurial, i know a lot about many many many different things, I am kind of an intellectual snob but i will still talk to anyone if they strike me as intelligent. Beauty is not my main criteria for attraction, intelligence is. Alll very mercurial.

Twilight said...

Jordan ~~ Yes, I have a couple of books by Gauquelin and read about his research initially many years ago. I do take note of the areas around the angles, whenever I come across a chart where the time of birth is reliable.

I have Cap. Mercury within 6* of the descendant and Pis. Jupiter about 4 from MC myself, natally and do find that these, especially Mercury "feel" important to me.

I had my own chart rectified once by an astrologer who used many of the items you mention. For Brits it's common that we don't know our exact time of birth. People in the USA are lucky to have theirs recorded.

Nice to "chat" with you. :-)