On Avatar, in very brief

H/T American Sun,

Watching in 3-D was a different experience. As Jake and Neytiri darted through the forest, the special effects brought me into their world. The action did not just come forward as one frame, but instead wove me into the movement onscreen, the tendrils of plants and falling drops of water each reaching out from a different point in space. The Na’vi bodies appeared to have mass. It was hard to discern what was real or C.G.I., which led me to wonder, “Why even distinguish?” This, in turn, produced a twisted surge of delight at the prospect of man’s becoming God.

The history of recorded images might be described as an incremental quest to master the building blocks of consciousness — first sight, then motion, then sound, then color. With “Avatar,” Cameron revealed that human ingenuity could marshal even more: physics, light, dimensionality; the ineffable sense of an object being real; the life force that makes a thing feel alive.


This section was written as a throwaway line of whimsy but when I read it I felt the enormous weight of implication behind it. I think it captures the entire cultural phenomenon of Avatar and especially explains why it never felt like it was made for me (in contrast with, say, Harry Potter, which felt like it was sort of for me). It’s hard to sell primitivist transhumanism to fundamentalist Christians because we already have a heaven, the idea of poking God in the eye is unappealing because we already feel like he’s paying attention to us, and that “twisted surge of delight” strikes us as a bad and sinful feeling that should be avoided in the future.

Anyway, it’s dying off because nobody believes that idealistic shit anymore, it’s 2022 now. We appreciate power.

Slava Ukraini!

People understand now if you want a garden of Eden, you better have money for armed guards, a genetically healthy population to supply labor, and a big, beautiful wall. You gotta be fuckin’ rich, boiiii.

Divorced from the dazzle of visual effects, I could see the aesthetic universe of “Avatar” for what it was: a glorified World Market sale section. The Na’vi alone were just a tiki-bar mishmash of traits that white people perceive as foreign: dreadlocks, beadwork, body mods, loincloths, feathers, cowrie shells.

Maybe the real reason I’m not into anti-social, anti-civil primitivism is the accoutrements. I can get into a lot of foreign and fantastic and even horrifying aesthetics but body mods and loincloths are just unapologetically gross.

About Aeoli Pera

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14 Responses to On Avatar, in very brief

  1. ShadoHand says:

    “Maybe the real reason I’m not into anti-social, anti-civil primitivism is the accoutrements.”

  2. MM says:

    Thoughts re twitter files?


    Its obviously going to be a big deal, I just don’t understand what the reason is for letting this out by Musk. Is it the very start of the build up to an orchestrated civil war, with ‘heroes’ and ‘leaders’ waiting in the wings as we speak?

    But then I see Trump on Truth Social say this:

    “A Massive fraud of this type and magnitude allows for the termination of all rules, regulations, and articles, even those found in the Constitution”

    ^hard to think of a better way to intentionally fumble such a political revelation. Barely even plausible deniable self sabotage (even by the standard of barely veiled intentional self sabotage being Trump’s entire schtick since before 2018 midterms).

    He has obviously been instructed by his handlers to discredit himself… but there is a panic to the above. “pay no attention to the man behind the curtain. Heres the oompa loompa man. You’d love to waste your attentional energies on him, right? Please?”

    I really don’t get it (but love the chaos, naturally).

    What’s the game here?

    • MM says:

      Avatar was far more insidious than most people have picked up on, RE the group consciousness immortality thing.

      The normie desires to be dissolved in the body of a God and live forever, in lieu of this they will dissolve into a society or even a leader. That’s really why many people were so weird about the movie- it gave them an immortality myth that then allowed the re-contextualization of that stupid cgi shitfest as ‘sacred’. Much more evil then ‘fern gully meets dances with terminator 2’ as I believe thecriticaldrinker described it.

    • Aeoli Pera says:

      Not long ago I was at a sort of town hall for a giant IT department with 10 VPs onstage, five of whom were men. They were doing an icebreaker where they’d ask a question and go down the line to get each VP’s answer, and one such question was “Who is your hero?” 8 out 10 said “my mom” and one of the remainder said “my wife”. The remainder was a woman who said “my grandpa”.

      So there you have it. That’s tech leadership for you.

    • Aeoli Pera says:

      Ed Dutton talks about how priests have tended to be men with feminine personality traits like being extremely high in agreeableness. There’s certainly a prosocial expression of this type of person in society (think of the archetypal healer/doctor), but I wouldn’t want them making decisions about computers and the internet.

      • bicebicebice says:

        “but I wouldn’t want them making decisions about computers and the internet.” I wouldn’t want them making decisions about chillums in the Church which explains the pederasty and pro globohomo trannie gayplex push…the high testosterone priest will go out and slay evil and perversion whereas the weak homo embraces it.

        don’t go to the gayface (h/t A.I) congregation, one should make a pastor catalog to quickly sort out real churches from the saunaclubs…

        Looks like another WIN for Edenism, phrenology and other cook-schizoid disenfranchised white male shit on the internet

        • Aeoli Pera says:

          You’re making the mistake of thinking male variability is some kind of ahistorical mistake.

          • Robotnick says:

            Yeah, imagine there being no place in the world for the likes of Mr. Rogers in a community.

          • bicebicebice says:

            Maybe the real racism was figuring out which white phenotypes are the actual humans oops looks like another win for Neanderthal… WE.DONT.NEED.WHITE.DITCH.DIGGERS

            kinda how Jesus been said them the meek-oid trube will inherit the earth…a friend of mine is coding himself out of a job by coding ai, the future world will be autistic white men banging rocks together while the robots, who took pity on them, run everything.

            “You’re making the mistake of thinking male variability is some kind of ahistorical mistake.”
            maybe ants from the same anthill is a good example on this…because while there be different orangutangs, they dont live together where for example the bornean orangutang does not move into the sumatran orangutang camp and take on the role of “priest”:

            you know what I mean

  3. LOADED says:

    Autism never wins. autism always loses.

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