Color in Film – Avatar

****  I suggest reading my Color in Film reviews AFTER your first viewing of the film.  I try to avoid major spoilers but some giveaways are impossible to prevent.  Also, I think you will better enjoy the element of surprise and knowing that your own emotional response to the film is fresh and untainted if you see the film first.


Alien Beauty:

By now everyone knows this movie’s plot is nothing special.  I had hesitated to bother even seeing it but word-of-mouth enthusiasm won me over.  How many possible plots are there anyway?  It turned out to have plenty of emotional content to keep me fully involved.

I chose to see it in 2D as I was afraid 3D might give me vertigo or make me nauseous.  Now I am thinking of sneaking off for a second viewing on my own in order to see it in 3D.  That way, if I have to leave I won’t spoil anyone else’s day.

So, to the film:

Absolutely breathtaking visuals.  And color plays a major part in the effect.  Of course the bad guys (humans) are in military earth tones.  But Pandora!  The running theme of violets establishes the otherness of this world.  Clear aquas, blues and spring greens trumpet health and vitality.  Careful use of pristine white blazes through with purity.

Enter vibrant red-orange, black and yellow and you KNOW something fierce is present.  But this turok has a crest and beard of royal blue – balancing the obvious threat with nobility and intelligence.

There were times I’m sure my mouth hung open and I was nearly teary-eyed just trying to absorb the beauty of this film.

Talking later, a nephew said it reminded him of the Garden of Eden.  I had thought of Lewis’s “real Narnia” in The Last Battle where all colors are heightened and pure.  This brings in the possible connection to Plato’s ideal types but I prefer to leave it all for the wonder of a fantasy story.

If you haven’t seen it yet – what are you waiting for???  I’ll probably go again!

There are probably hundreds of examples, but do you have any favorite color moments from Avatar that you would like to share?


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