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Blog #2

During the past few years, the environmental movement has begun to grow drastically in the United States. Many activist groups have emerged and are loudly voicing their opinions on the negative impact that humans are having on the environment.  Efforts to “Go Green” have been utilized in every aspect of society, including businesses attempting to frame their marketing schemes around the movement and these ideals. Mass media has also been swept up in environmentalism; like any economic business model, the media focuses on what interests the people.

After watching the movie “Avatar,” it quickly becomes apparent that the film contains strong ideological statements concerning the environmental movement. Although at first glance “Avatar” appears to be an action movie and perhaps purely a fantasy, it is laden with strong messages that reflect a large portion of modern day beliefs. When humans invade Pandora, the fictional planet where “Avatar” is set, they begin destroying the landscape and habitats for their own gain of natural resources – a shockingly similar storyline to the controversial real-world issues of resource use, from fossil fuel drilling in the Middle East to deforestation in the Amazon.

“Avatar” explores the emotional storylines of the Na’vi, whose tree homes are being destroyed by the human inhabitants. Like the endangered plants and animals of the real world, “Avatar” highlights the inability of nature to survive catastrophic destruction. The emotion portrayed through the Na’vi people, as well as the magical and beautiful portrayal of Pandora, are clear illustrations of environmental ideals, and effectively comment on how important it is to limit human intrusion and destruction in the natural world.

As seen in Avatar, American audiences are attracted to movies that are relatable to real-world issues. I think it’s often easier to consider complex, controversial problems in a non-real setting, such as a movie or TV show. When one considers his or her stance on a fictional movie, it can often result in clarifying personal belief in the real world. After viewing “Avatar,” I found myself thinking mainly about how beautiful the graphics were in depicting the magical ‘Pandora,’ and how upset I was when the forest was destroyed. Indirectly, my own personal feelings on environmentalism were highlighted through my vieweing of “Avatar.”

 

http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20091211/REVIEWS/912119998

 

http://www.mnn.com/green-tech/research-innovations/blogs/is-avatar-radical-environmental-propaganda

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  1. September 27, 2011 at 4:18 am

    Good points. Avatar certainly does seem to support the environmental movement and taps into our emotions about the earth. There seem to be similar themes in the Stephen Spielberg program, Terra Nova: e.g., that even if humans had a fresh start, they could screw it up. Seems we have lost some faith in ourselves since the science fiction stories of several decades ago. Full credit.

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