Other reviewers have outlined the similarity of the Avatar storyline with that of Disney’s Pocahontas. This is true, but as my husband pointed out to me, almost any love story from Romeo and Juliet to more recent love stories have had elements of the Pocahontas story. Everyone loves a story where two people completely different from one another fall in love and overcome harsh circumstances. This is just good story writing.
At any rate, that element of the story did not bother me very much. What I felt that Avatar was lacking the most was effective use of the 3D images. I think that many of the 3D sequences were underplayed considering that about half of the movie was designed purely to show off the new 3D effects.
I also did not really care for the racist undertones; that of the backwards native people and the earth-killing anger of the civilized nation.
Other than these elements, however, I think that there are some very original elements to the movie. The world, Pandora, was very well done. The creatures were original, and the ecosystem was unique.
If you have not yet seen the movie Avatar, then you should try to see it in 3D before it is no longer in theaters. I think some of the effects will be lost once they move to the small screen.