I feel nothing for 'The Last Airbender'. Nothing at all. I watch the trailer and get zip -- although, in fairness, I don't believe I've watched a trailer for TLA all the way through.
The stills look silly. I can't remember if I've seen a poster. I haven't thought about the movie. I have a severe disconnect with this product.
There's also a deadness in blog coverage. I haven't read speculations, hopeful gushings, or breathless write-ups about plans of seeing this one. Nobody seems to hate it, love it, or...whatever.
Honestly, I wasn't even aware the movie opens this weekend. Does it really? It's as if it's slinking into theaters with martial arts stealth.
Reviews are rolling in and they're much worse than I expected.
Kenneth Turan goes with:
That's not so bad. Par for the course when dealing with most kids films, really.
Neil Miller at Filmschoolrejects goes with the mighty and pounding:
As you might imagine, the offense was committed by the director, M. Night Shyamalan, but that’s not where it ends. On the whole, Paramount’s The Last Airbender is perhaps the most well-rounded failure of 2010. Whether it’s the wooden performances of its young cast, the action sequences, the community theater-level dialog, the story’s pace or even James Newton Howard’s score, nothing works. It’s as if Shyamalan of 10 years ago is playing a sick joke on fans, a joke with no punch-line and no room for laughs. For anyone wondering if, like The Happening, it’s so bad that it’s funny — it’s not.
Nice. I like that. 'The most well-rounded failure'. Sweet.
Roger Ebert says:
Agonizing in very category he can think of? Perhaps one of the more direct and pointed instances of evisceration by keyboard in recent memory.
That's good. Really.
But this! Oh, my! This is jaw-dropping:
!!!!!!!!!!! Holy freaking crap. A nine-year-old kid -- the very heart of the movie's targeted demo -- says 'They're screwed'. I love that. Love it. Screwed...
That next movie was 'Unbreakable', which left me cold, but I held out hope. Following that came 'Signs' with its laughable story. (Why, again, would aliens who dissolve in water hide in [an irrigated] corn field on a planet more than half covered with oceans)? Then, in quick succession, came 'The Village', 'Lady in the Water', and 'The Happening' -- a one-two-three punch to the moviegoer's midsection, a trio of films which slice and dice intellect into bite-sized pieces -- three movies, each sillier in their plot contortions and more desperate to engage the audience than the last.
Now, these many years after the lush and layered beauty of 'The Sixth Sense', the man's name has become synonymous with, well, offensive dreck. Poor storytelling. Embarrassing movies with silky-smooth camera technique and plots that gleefully ignore fundamental logic. Twist endings for the addled of mind. Wicked bad press. And, worst of all, offensive dreck. Oh, sorry. Said that already. Guess I'm repeating myself.