By John Thavis
VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The movie “Avatar” got a mixed review from the Vatican newspaper, which praised the “magic” of its high-tech, sci-fi imagery but said the film lacked real human emotion.
The film’s visual impact is fascinating, and opens a new frontier in the realm of science fiction cinema, the newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano, said in a review Jan. 9, a few days before the movie opened in Italian theaters.
The results of director James Cameron’s innovative 3-D imagery make the movie “worth the price of a ticket,” it said.
But the film’s story is “bland,” the newspaper said.
“It narrates without going very deep, and ends up falling into sentimentalism. Everything is reduced to an overly simple anti-imperialistic and anti-militaristic parable,” it said.
It added the movie also “gets stuck in a spiritualism tied to the worship of nature.”
In its review, Vatican Radio also called the film visually enchanting, but said it seemed to reflect the modern “pseudo-doctrine” that makes ecology a religion and turns nature into a divinity.
“`Avatar’ is rather harmless and certainly not new in popularizing, through the beauty of the planet Pandora, eco-spiritual tendencies born in the `Age of Aquarius,'” the radio review said.
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