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Patrick Goldstein and James Rainey
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Jim Cameron eager to mix it up with 'Avatar's' right-wing critics

You can always tell that the Academy has sent out its final Oscar ballots by the sudden reappearance of gaudy full-page Oscar ads in the trades, my paper and the New York Times. It also means that most nominees, fearful of making a horrible gaffe, are especially careful not to say anything that could possibly be viewed as controversial in their interviews with the showbiz press. 

Except, of course, for Jim Cameron.

Cameroncover He's on the cover of this week's The Envelope and he's clearly eager to mix it up with the multitudes of conservatives who've been trashing "Avatar," claiming that it's dumb, sanctimonious, anti-military, nuttily pro-environment and, as Big Hollywood's John Nolte memorably put it, a "Death Wish'' for leftists. Cameron isn't the sort of guy to take those brickbats lying down, even if means alienating a few Oscar voters, either because they agree with the conservative take on the film or prefer to vote for films that are free of any political leanings. 

As he told Glenn Whipp: "Let me put it this way. I'm happy to piss those guys off. I don't agree with their worldview." As for his detractors' contempt for his environmental consciousness, dramatized in the film by the callous destruction of the Na'vi's pastoral world, Cameron says that the film's environmental message is a lesson for all moviegoers to digest. He explains that our planet "will be a dying world if we don't make some fundamental changes about how we view ourselves and how we view wealth .... We're going to have to live with less."

Cameron admits that many people will wonder what a fabulously wealthy filmmaker ensconced in a Malibu mansion knows about living with less, but he says that "I think there's a way to live and raise your kids with a set of values that teaches them the importance of hard work, the importance of respecting other people and the importance of respecting nature."

Cameron says he did have second thoughts about using an explicit "shock and awe" Iraq war reference in the film, but he insists that it reflects a bigger point he was trying to make. "What I really was saying was, 'Listen to what your leaders are saying. Open your eyes. And understand what the run-up to war is like, so the next time it happens, you can question it."

People have debated for years whether message-oriented films actually have an effect on filmgoers' consciousness. Seeing a movie is such an internalized, diffuse experience that it's hard to know how much of an influence it leaves behind. But I would say this: You could not have spent 150 minutes immersed in the world of "Avatar" without coming away with a new respect for how much we should treasure the natural resources of our world -- or any other. 


Why do conserivatives hate the most popular movie of all time?

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What native tribe didn't rape, pillage, sacrifice to their worldy gods? The U.S. Calvary was made up of WHITES, BLACKS, HISPANICS, & Indians. The native indians were made up of INDIANS. And they had no justice system. Whites were slaughtered just as much as Indians, & many Indians joined the U.S. Army to fight their enemy Indians. The Great Zulu Nation was a warrior-slave caste. Each tribe slaughtered by the Zulu, was taken or sold off as slaves. Islamic pirates slave raided Europe taking 3x as many slaves for sex & war, as America took for Agriculture. America's Indians & ex-slaves now live as Equal & growing cultures. Of the 20million+ African slaves in the Islamic states... none are known to survive today. Slavery is still legal in some parts of Africa today. GO NA'VI natives!!!

Only us little people who spend our hard earned money to be entertained by the likes of Spielberg, Cameron and there ilk, will have to live with less. The progressive elites will be the ones who determine what is fair for us peons to have. I was going to see this movie in an Imax theater, but I think I will wait to see it on a bootleg copy so I don't put one cent in this hypocrites pocket!

I'll keep my criticism in the form of simply not seeing any more of his movies. I'm so sick of Hollywood anyway. There's not a creative brain left in the city. All they can do anymore is BAD remakes of old television shows and movies. Mr. Cameron can go pound sand for all I care. He's simply another on my list of snooty Hollywood types who think they're smarter than I am and try to insult me and my way of life and expect me to pay them to do it.

Cameron will lose a "debate" on the cultural and political leanings of his film. He is as noted a Malibu dwelling millionaire (net worth: north of $250 million) who relies on half-billion dollar financing to make his last movie. The "carbon impact" of AVATAR is somewhere akin to that an auto manufacturing plant. His own personal lifestyle is incompatible with his endorsement in interviews of eco-terrorism (I doubt he would look favorably on people burning down his mansion or luxury sports cars).

His movie has been criticized by the Marine Commandant and active duty Marines for its anti-Military, anti-Marine sentiments as Marines and Soldiers fight and die in Afghanistan against the Taliban and AQ. Cameron's words have been echoed by ... Osama bin Laden in his latest Fatwa.

Wealthy, talented, and enormously well-paid Hollywood celebrities should shut up. They are good at putting on junk-food spectacles (the "Na'vi" lack any cultural achievements, including music, books, literature, sculpture, painting, philosophy, or anything but a fantasy-sanitized view of "noble savages" without the savage part) but lack any connection to ordinary people.

What does a man so fabulously wealthy and famous even UNDERSTAND about ordinary life and the people who live it? I note with interest Cameron has not vowed to give up making films, which are polluting and require massive corporate financing, or live in a forest in a loincloth, or any of that.

At a time when people are struggling to make next payday, Cameron should just shut up.

".... We're going to have to live with less."

You first, Jimbo. You first...

You must remember when anyone like Mr. Cameron uses the term "we" it is intended in the royal sense... Or, if you prefer the boiled down version "we" means all us common folk do not deserve the trappings of modern society that should rightly be reserved to the intellectual elite, therefore "we" will have to learn to live with less.

When the privileged class voluntarily reduces their carbon footprint instead of buying indulgences from the church of Gore I will consider a 4 cylinder engine instead of the 6 I currently drive.

"I think there's a way to live and raise your kids with a set of values that teaches them the importance of hard work, the importance of respecting other people and the importance of respecting nature."

i.e. I'm not going to do a darn thing to change the way I live, but I'll tell my kids about how the other half lives.

This guy is unbelievable. A**!! Hypocrite!! Wealth is fine if you already have it but shame on you if you are currently not wealthy and are seeking a better life for yourself! Seriously, when are we going to stop listening to jerks like this and promoting them as some sort of visionary? He seems like a guilt-ridden fool!

Oh, good grief.

Surely, everyone knows by now:


Mr. Cameron's just playing a little joke on your readers.

It sure is funny how easy it is to tell the world to do with less when you have so much beyond plenty. The day Mr. Cameron moves into a Pacoima neighborhood and starts to practice what he preaches I will consider “doing with less”. This goes for all of Hollywood as well.

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