Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: Avatar Is Certified Fresh

Plus, Did You Hear about the Morgans? should go into hiding, and Crazy Heart is red hot.

by | December 17, 2009 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got a strange alien world (James Cameron‘s Avatar, starring Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana), and a couple on the run (Did You Hear About the Morgans?, starring Hugh Grant and Sarah Jessica Parker). What do the critics have to say?



Avatar is one of the most hotly anticipated films in years, for a number of reasons: it marks James Cameron’s return to fiction filmmaking after a long layoff; its motion capture techniques were the subject of intense pre-release press; and it’s the most expensive movie ever made. And now, the verdict is in: critics say Avatar is indeed a visionary picture, a movie of such sensorial power and majesty that you won’t mind too much that the plotting and characters aren’t quite as state-of-the-art. Sam Worthington stars as an ex-Marine who has replaced his twin brother as an Avatar driver in the alien world of Pandora; he soon finds his loyalties divided between the military and the Na’vi, the indigenous species on this strange planet. The pundits are wowed by Cameron’s phantasmagorical visuals, which many agree mark a giant leap forward in the realm of special effects, and for that reason alone, you should probably see the Certified Fresh Avatar. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which we take a closer look at Cameron’s career, as well as our video interview with Worthington. In addition, watch this episode of Unscripted on Moviefone., in which Worthington and Saldana interview each other.)


Did You Hear About the Morgans?

Fish-out-of-water comedies are so prevalent at this point that any new entries in the genre need to bring something fresh to the table. Unfortunately, critics say the appeal of Hugh Grant and Sarah Jessica Parker is not enough to elevate Did You Hear About the Morgans? above its middling script. Grant and Parker star as a big-city married couple on the rocks; upon witnessing a murder, the Witness Protection Program relocates them to Wyoming, where they relearn to love each other. The pundits say Morgans is utterly generic, with shopworn stereotypes about small town folk, and little chemistry between its two leads; worse, it’s almost laugh-free.

Also opening this week in limited release:

  • Crazy Heart, starring Jeff Bridges as a down-on-his-luck country singer looking for a last shot at love, is Certified Fresh at 96 percent.

  • A Town Called Panic, a surreal, wacky, and brightly-colored stop-motion animated film, is at 80 percent.

  • The Young Victoria, starring Emily Blunt as the woman who would be queen in the midst of a power struggle for the throne, is at 69 percent.

  • The French import Ricky, a comedy about an oddly gifted infant, is at 43 percent.

  • Nine, starring Daniel Day-Lewis and Penelope Cruz in an adaptation of the hit Broadway musical, itself a take on Fellini‘s 8 ½, is at 34 percent.

Tag Cloud

Biopics crime Superheroes TV Land CBS All Access Lionsgate LGBTQ Music Polls and Games SundanceTV biography period drama Fall TV aliens TCA 2017 ITV TruTV Rom-Com TCA 2015 Star Wars Schedule Year in Review Sneak Peek Fox News technology Disney harry potter Bravo cops Super Bowl 007 Reality Competition DC Comics Sundance Universal Tumblr Toys CBS VH1 FX GIFs Teen Red Carpet NBC DirecTV 24 frames Nickelodeon Best and Worst BBC Oscars Action singing competition Dark Horse Comics Lifetime Valentine's Day Countdown History The CW Winter TV crime drama CMT TIFF Nominations FOX Cartoon Network Pop Hulu Pirates Kids & Family historical drama OWN Rocky X-Men TNT Fantasy Nat Geo Comedy Central comiccon vampires HBO Martial Arts Animation composers ESPN Grammys Emmys 2016 serial killer Opinion Sci-Fi Cosplay ABC Family Reality Tomatazos BET Starz ABC Summer Podcast Infographic Logo The Arrangement Watching Series discovery social media Winners Drama Premiere Dates FXX Food Network diversity APB RT History Musical MTV AMC politics Character Guide A&E crime thriller VICE Syfy Calendar Marathons cooking Masterpiece SDCC Amazon science fiction Rock psycho GLAAD police drama Interview Mary Tyler Moore Set visit Freeform Holidays docudrama El Rey boxoffice Marvel Election sitcom supernatural Adult Swim Musicals TV GoT TLC Writers Guild of America Certified Fresh MSNBC Horror Thanksgiving BBC America Trailer PaleyFest E! Showtime Comic Book thriller Photos USA First Look President Ghostbusters Country adventure Crackle Spring TV Esquire CNN Trivia cinemax Extras Comedy TBS 2017 sports WGN Box Office PBS Disney Channel dramedy war travel American Society of Cinematographers zombie Netflix IFC Awards TCM NYCC based on movie Mystery Star Trek Video Games