Freeview film of the day: Avatar

James Cameron's £237 million sci-fi epic broke all box office records on release in 2009, and almost a decade later its visuals and action remain astonishing.


Avatar ★★★ 
8.00-11.15pm E4  


Still top of the all-time worldwide box-office chart with a $2.7 billion take-home, James Cameron’s sci-fi eco-epic seemed to single-handedly justify the hype around 3D on release. I prefer it in 2D as it is here, where its mix of live-action footage, motion-capture and pure CGI is still stunning. At root, it’s an old-fashioned good-versus-evil struggle that happens to be set 150 years hence, where benign natives – the slender, blue-skinned Na’vi – find their Eden-like paradise Pandora threatened by a militaristic invader (humans mining for minerals). Into this paradise is thrust Sam Worthington’s paraplegic marine, who goes undercover with complicated results. Emotionally charged, politically liberal… and the late James Horner’s music is awe-inspiring.


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