The Last Airbender

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2.6

Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 712 Ratings

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  1. SeanO.
    Jul 2, 2010
    5
    I love the original cartoon of Avatar: The Last Airbender. And I am rarely critical of almost any movie I see. But there were several problems I had with this movie 1. The said several of the character's names wrong. Sokka, Aang, Iroh were not said like it is said in the cartoon. 2. Why can the Firebenders not bend fire without fire around them? In the cartoon they didn't have I love the original cartoon of Avatar: The Last Airbender. And I am rarely critical of almost any movie I see. But there were several problems I had with this movie 1. The said several of the character's names wrong. Sokka, Aang, Iroh were not said like it is said in the cartoon. 2. Why can the Firebenders not bend fire without fire around them? In the cartoon they didn't have to manipulate fire. They could make it on their own. 3. Why are the characters so serious. In the cartoon they are pretty funny and light hearted. Especially Aang and Sokka. In this movie, there was rarely a comical moment to be found. 4. They rushed the story. If you have not seen the cartoon I could definitely see why someone would be put off by what occurred in the movie. It went by so quickly that it was hard to tell what was going on. It is only an hour and 45 minute movie. They could have extended another 30 minutes and told the story better. (Even though another 30 minutes might have been torture to everyone who thinks the script and acting was horrible.) Overall I think with some new direction this could be a good live action crossover. With a new director and new script writer, I think it would be okay. I still found it mildly enjoyable because I love the cartoon so much, but can easily see why people would be put off by it. Expand
  2. Aug 11, 2010
    6
    Agree with you
    JohnM.
    Jul 2, 2010
    The effects and action scenes where well done, but the dialogue suffers as it feels like it was zooming through the avatar universe.
  3. Aug 12, 2010
    6
    I viewed this film with all expectations wiped from my mind, knowing that the animation is so successful and the majority that had already seen the film spoke poisonously of it. Regarding that, I didn't think it was as bad as everybody seems to have expressed. As a movie, it wasn't at the highest quality, with cringe-worthy acting at times, cheap-looking computer effects and heavy,I viewed this film with all expectations wiped from my mind, knowing that the animation is so successful and the majority that had already seen the film spoke poisonously of it. Regarding that, I didn't think it was as bad as everybody seems to have expressed. As a movie, it wasn't at the highest quality, with cringe-worthy acting at times, cheap-looking computer effects and heavy, excitable bending movements. However, apart from that, it wasn't bad at all (or at least, would be extremely impressive if it were a university project or television drama). I enjoyed seeing the characters in a different medium and saw it merely as a bit of light entertainment; and with no pressurizing expectations, that to me wasn't a problem. The story was fast-paced, a bit blunt and at times confusing, but apart from that I found some of the changes from the original interesting and liked seeing the flash-backs in to characters' pasts. I also liked the small changes, such as Yue's change of hair colour as she was converted spiritually, Azula's peevish and more-like-her-age appearance and the different but balanced pair that was Iroh and Zuko, who I found showed better acting skill than most of the cast. Sokka was okay too, but I think Iroh won the prize for best actor among the others, who mostly looked as if they could have come from an ameture but very successful drama group. M. Night Shalalalaman had a big challenge to write, produce and direct a 1 1/2 hour movie and fit 20 episodes-worth into it. The outcome was successful and I really enjoyed viewing The Last Airbender, but I wouldn't be surprised if some of the crew had worked on the likes of Power Rangers in the past as well. It had potential to be better if the director hadn't taken on so much responsibility individually, but even if it could have been better, what is there is good enough for me! Expand
  4. Aug 11, 2010
    6
    I was skeptical when I heard M. Night was directing it. The movie wasn't "bad" but the story just seem so rushed. If you never seen the cartoon series you would be completely lost to what was going on and who any of the characters are. While the acting wasn't the great, it was on par with just about every other child actor in any other movie I've seen. I just hope this doesn't kill anyI was skeptical when I heard M. Night was directing it. The movie wasn't "bad" but the story just seem so rushed. If you never seen the cartoon series you would be completely lost to what was going on and who any of the characters are. While the acting wasn't the great, it was on par with just about every other child actor in any other movie I've seen. I just hope this doesn't kill any chances of more Airbender movies being made,get a new director and new writers and this movie series could rival the Harry Potter series if done right. Expand
  5. Jun 11, 2011
    5
    Based on the animated television show from Nickelodeon, this live-action adaptation tells the story about four nations with the elements of Air, Water, Earth, and Fire who fought against each in a great war. A few years later, a successful avatar and an airbender named Aang, who has been sealed frozen for thousands of years, has been released by two people from the water tribe named KataraBased on the animated television show from Nickelodeon, this live-action adaptation tells the story about four nations with the elements of Air, Water, Earth, and Fire who fought against each in a great war. A few years later, a successful avatar and an airbender named Aang, who has been sealed frozen for thousands of years, has been released by two people from the water tribe named Katara and Sokka as they try to protect him by any means necessary by joining him on a quest to the northern water kingdom to master waterbending while being chased by Prince Zuko, the exiled son of the fire lord Ozai, Commander Zhao, and the fire nation's military leader.

    Let's just say I watched the TV show and was excited to see this movie in theaters, but instead saw it online and boy was I disappointed. We'll get to the bad parts in a moment. For now, I'm going to say the good things about this movie.

    The actors did okay at their performances, the CGI effects were great, the music score had great emotion to it, the costume design was neat, and the action scenes were very cool. That's it for my praise.

    Now for the bad things. The storyline had a lot of flaws and was overlong, rushed, and predictable, the dialogue in the characters were let down, the storytelling was inconsistent, the characters were underdeveloped (butchered names included) and the script was bland.

    The Last Airbender isn't horrible, but it doesn't even hold a candle to the TV show. It's just a weak and very mediocre adaptation. I've been expected by a lot of people that I'm supposed to give this a 5/10, so yes, friends. A 5/10 is just the right rating for this movie. Is everyone happy now?

    5/10
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  6. CA
    Jul 5, 2010
    5
    Not horrible... could have been better. Still fun and wasn't a waste of time. I'd buy the DVD.
  7. Sep 27, 2010
    4
    I took my ten year old daughter to see this. She does Karate and she likes fantasy, explosions and swords. She gives it an 8. For her I think the fact that the acting and screenplay is really cringeworthy in many places eludes her. On the other hand I have to admit to being really bored and just kind of embarassed for the actors. I'm sure many of them have a lot more potential. Some of theI took my ten year old daughter to see this. She does Karate and she likes fantasy, explosions and swords. She gives it an 8. For her I think the fact that the acting and screenplay is really cringeworthy in many places eludes her. On the other hand I have to admit to being really bored and just kind of embarassed for the actors. I'm sure many of them have a lot more potential. Some of the special effects and action sequences are really very good, and I can see that Shyamalan had a lot of potential with the intellectual property, but I really think he just couldn't pull it together. Honestly it's like watching a train wreck in 3D animation, but slowed down to 1/60th time. You just want it to be over. If there is an obvious 'reason' for such a flop I think I saw it in the end credits "Written, Directed, and Produced by M. Night Shyamalan". His ego has him wearing one (or two) too many hats. This is a movie that you could wait to see on DVD if you have kids that like the cartoon or the idea, or not at all if you don't. Expand
  8. Oct 18, 2011
    6
    Even though I liked the visuals the acting was just horrible and the dialogs, Oh my dear God.
    Since the acting is a really important thing in a movie it really irritates you if you can't enjoy a movie because of it. Furthermore, when the acting doesn't kill you, the stupid dialog will. To sum up, a good movie with some "bugs" and if you are a more visual type that doesn't care about the
    Even though I liked the visuals the acting was just horrible and the dialogs, Oh my dear God.
    Since the acting is a really important thing in a movie it really irritates you if you can't enjoy a movie because of it. Furthermore, when the acting doesn't kill you, the stupid dialog will. To sum up, a good movie with some "bugs" and if you are a more visual type that doesn't care about the dialog, acting than you will enjoy this movie and if not than I watching this movie would be a sin
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  9. Aug 25, 2012
    5
    Perhaps giving this movie a 5 would be high praise considering how many people HATE this movie, but I can understand why they would hate it. I never watched the cartoon, but my guess from all of the hate is that the film adaptation isn't faithful at all to its source material. I tried watching the film as just a stand alone film, but it didn't even succeed with that. With the wooden actingPerhaps giving this movie a 5 would be high praise considering how many people HATE this movie, but I can understand why they would hate it. I never watched the cartoon, but my guess from all of the hate is that the film adaptation isn't faithful at all to its source material. I tried watching the film as just a stand alone film, but it didn't even succeed with that. With the wooden acting and bland storytelling, it's hard to care about what happens at all in the 103 minutes of this movie. It has some decent special effects and some ok action sequences, but that's all. Expand
  10. Jun 1, 2013
    5
    Now granted, the film has its good qualities. I thought, as an audience member, it was reasonable. But as a student filmmaker, I must say, M. Night Shalyaman has done better work.
  11. Oct 3, 2014
    6
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Rarely have I seen a movie receive such hate. Don't believe the haters, their feedback is WAY out of proportion (caveat - I've never seen the TV show). The movie isn't hard to follow. The production design is in general very good. That flying animal thing was ridiculous looking but the Fire Nation ships and armor looked grim and menacing. The effects are up to par and the action is good (caveat again - I didn't see this in 3D and some things looked like they could have been obnoxious in 3D). This is by no means a perfect movie. Some of the dialog and acting is wooden or borderline terrible and some of the emotional set-ups are dumb. "I'll miss you more than you'll ever know", why because you held hands for 5 minutes!?! The race casting is conspicuous, interesting from a minority director. The good guys are white and all the bad guys are middle eastern. I mean come-on, that lily white Gran-Gran wouldn't last a day in an arctic environment. But ultimately I enjoyed the film and (similar to The Golden Compass) I'm disappointed I can't see the rest of the story. Expand
  12. JohnM.
    Jul 2, 2010
    4
    The effects and action scenes where well done, but the dialogue suffers as it feels like it was zooming through the avatar universe.
  13. DavidC.
    Jul 1, 2010
    4
    On the one hand, I'm impressed by the film's commitment to the source material. It pulls from multiple episodes and does allot of it justice. Unfortunately, it does this at the expense of its character development and actual dialogue. And the fact is, that while the martial arts, awesome animation, and intriguing storyline were all large facets of the series, the one aspect that On the one hand, I'm impressed by the film's commitment to the source material. It pulls from multiple episodes and does allot of it justice. Unfortunately, it does this at the expense of its character development and actual dialogue. And the fact is, that while the martial arts, awesome animation, and intriguing storyline were all large facets of the series, the one aspect that set it above typical kids shows was the characters, Instead we're left with cardboard cutouts that leave us longing for the show. Again, if you're looking for eye candy and unique martial arts scenes, you could do allot worse. just don't expect much else. Expand
  14. ChristopherH
    Jul 4, 2010
    6
    Not nearly as bad as the drones are saying. Geez, it's like they've got a personal score to settle with the reviews. Was it great, no; but my 9-year old loved it. In the grand scheme, who is this movie for anyway!
  15. Angtheairbender
    Jul 5, 2010
    4
    Well, Metacritc's score is almost spot on. This film has tons of problems. And you can tell this film was rushed so badly and almost no heart was put into it. The characters have little personality, and if you're going to this film to see the cleverness and for all of the great memorable characters, you will be very disappointed. Almost no humor is present, and Sokka Well, Metacritc's score is almost spot on. This film has tons of problems. And you can tell this film was rushed so badly and almost no heart was put into it. The characters have little personality, and if you're going to this film to see the cleverness and for all of the great memorable characters, you will be very disappointed. Almost no humor is present, and Sokka doesn't even tell one joke in the entire film or make a sarcastic remark, which is what his whole character is about!! The effects are mediocre at best, and could've been so much better. I don't know why the say some of the names differently, which is stupid. The charcters hardly resemble themselves from the series except Katara and Sokka which made me happy, but then again Sokka isn't funny at all, and all Katara does is cry and protect Aang. I hated all the things they changed in this movie too; it just ruined it and insulted my intelligence.. The only scenes I appreciated and liked isthe beginning in the South Pole, the blue-spirit scenes and the very end. And the action scenes you see in the trailers, is basically all of the action that's in the movie, which just ruins it even more. Shyamalan didn't care about this movie at all or very little. The entire first season crammed into 90 minutes is not enough for this film, and if he cared about it, he would give the fans what they wanted and make it a 2 1/2 hour film with an extended edition for the die-hard fans and actually have character-development and a story that resembles the actually first season by 70% atleast... It just makes me sad that this film was made, it should've never been created in the first place, and did nothing for the fans and it tells you Shyamalan cares more about money than us... I'm so angry; I could've written a screen-play ten times better than this!! And I wish I could direct a new-film just to get it right!!! The only reason it deserves a four which is being nice, is that it looks like some effort was put into it and atleast they got some characters that resembled their animated counterparts and it was somewhat related to Book One and gave me inspiration to write my own screenplay to redo this horrible masterpiece, and making go back to watching and appreciating the animated series even more. Have super low expectations if you see this... Short Review: It's not a good film and it will disappoint many Avatar fans, and the characters have no personalities and the film is way too rushed. Also has lots of stupid changes and Shymalan is a horrible director. Don't see this in the theaters, rent it if you're a fan or you just want to entertain and calm down some kids or just for a good pop-corn film. I would've liked this film more if I didn't see this in the theatres, because I expect such a better experience. Have low expectations in be in a good mood for a better experience. 4/10. Shorter Review: Just rent it if you're a fan with very low expectations. 4/10. I don't have much to say about the acting since they're just kids and haven't really started an acting career yet. And is mostly Shyamalan's fault for not being a better director. Expand
  16. meh
    Aug 11, 2010
    5
    The animated version is far and away the pinnacle of its existence. This movie felt far short of that pinnacle. Stiff acting, bad casting and the machinations of M. Night ruined what would have been an epic film. Now, it's just one of those movies used to babysit your nephew on a Saturday night.
  17. Aug 11, 2011
    5
    "The Last Airbender" is not terrible. The story is well put-together and flows well, considering it was all condensed from a whole season from a TV show. The visuals - save for the shameful post-production 3D that makes Clash of the Titans look like Avatar - are also very solid. Peltz's performance is bland, but aside from her, there weren't any huge problems. The screenplay, though, is a"The Last Airbender" is not terrible. The story is well put-together and flows well, considering it was all condensed from a whole season from a TV show. The visuals - save for the shameful post-production 3D that makes Clash of the Titans look like Avatar - are also very solid. Peltz's performance is bland, but aside from her, there weren't any huge problems. The screenplay, though, is a mess. Full of cliches and often incomprehensible, the whole plot falls apart by the end. Expand
  18. Jan 22, 2011
    5
    M. Night Shylaman does it again! That is not a good thing. If I were not a fan of the original series, this would be a 2 or a 3. He absoulutley ruined a potentially great movie. The acting was not awful, but the dialouge sure was!! Honestly I didn't know why people made a big deal in the casting when they should be concerned in who is directing and writing this THING!!! It doesn't makeM. Night Shylaman does it again! That is not a good thing. If I were not a fan of the original series, this would be a 2 or a 3. He absoulutley ruined a potentially great movie. The acting was not awful, but the dialouge sure was!! Honestly I didn't know why people made a big deal in the casting when they should be concerned in who is directing and writing this THING!!! It doesn't make sense and it was rushed. And I don't understand why they made the film dark and humourless, yet still wanted to stay within a PG rating? That's like making Terminator happy and G rated or Despicable Me dark and R rated!!! There are a few pros though. For starters the special effects are beautifully done and Dev Patel and Noah Ringer showed they can carry the role into a future film ( if there is one). The story also has alot of potential if they just lighten it up and take their time in developing their characters. It also wouldn't hurt to fix up the dialouge. If by some miracle they do make a sequel, they should dump ShylaBAD for ruining a potentially great first in a planned trilogy. Expand
  19. Aug 24, 2014
    6
    Oh this feeling of disappointment and frustration I get every time I see a movie that had such potential, but which wasted it.

    The Last Airbender... based on an anime, this is the first part, I think. The story does end in a way that promises a sequel. I don't think that's an excuse to leave the story so... unfulfilling. The scenes kept jumping without coherency a few times, but it's
    Oh this feeling of disappointment and frustration I get every time I see a movie that had such potential, but which wasted it.

    The Last Airbender... based on an anime, this is the first part, I think. The story does end in a way that promises a sequel. I don't think that's an excuse to leave the story so... unfulfilling.

    The scenes kept jumping without coherency a few times, but it's a good thing that didn't happen all that much. More annoying was that we had plenty of Katara's inner dialogue, which in some cases was the only way to tie some events together and introduce new people. Then again, that dialogue didn't fit into the story since it kept jumping in only when they would have been forced used more time to explore/explain something, and sometimes they even explained something she had already gone over. Talk about inconsistence.

    All in all, the writing was rather poor. Such a fascinating world, history and cultures should be explored and not just thrown to the screen so that they can move on. All in all every scene suffered from an air of hurried storytelling. New characters appeared before you even got to know the old ones, and the acting really suffered from that as well; no one had the chance to actually perform, making it into a wooden farce. You couldn't possibly feel anything for anyone when they just stepped in without proper introduction.

    I was hoping this movie would be better than some of my friends said it was. I cannot help but feel disappointed. The special effect were just about as good as can be expected, but nothing to be amazed about.

    If they make a sequel, I hope they up their game a little!
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  20. Aug 30, 2012
    5
    This movie is a big delusion! The dialogies and the script are terrible and the acting isn't much better. It's also too much serious, while the cartooon has many hilarious moments. If give it a 5 and not a 3 or a 2, it's just for the special effects and the fight scenes, which are some of the most visually beautiful I've ever seen.
  21. Jan 28, 2014
    5
    I genuinely think that this movie is not as absolutely unbearable and completely full of **** as most people make it out to be. But it is undeniably bad. Nominating Dev Patel for a Golden Razzie was very harsh but overall the acting is atrocious. Mainly due to the title character Aang played by Noah Ringer. How the hell did he even get through the audition process with a face which looksI genuinely think that this movie is not as absolutely unbearable and completely full of **** as most people make it out to be. But it is undeniably bad. Nominating Dev Patel for a Golden Razzie was very harsh but overall the acting is atrocious. Mainly due to the title character Aang played by Noah Ringer. How the hell did he even get through the audition process with a face which looks constantly surprised and in pain at the same time. Pretty much everyone else with the exception of Dev Patel (who is alright) is bad, but not to the point of self harm like Noah Ringer. Reading other reviews most people claim that the cheesy dialogue is the worst thing about the whole movie, I have to admit I agree with them all. Sure it isn't Tommy Wiseau's The Room, but damn this is written by the same guy who directed The Sixth Sense. What the **** happened? Out of every second of The Last Airbender which I watched the only above average and enjoyable aspect of it was Zuko's storyline (Dev Patel). Maybe if I could be bothered to watch the anime TV series it might be better, I hate to admit it but I actually thought his banishment was pretty cool. However the last scene (which is only in there for the minute chance of a sequel) they totally ruin it and attempt to bring in even more family conflict to create drama. Every attempt at drama in the movie fails though, I did not care one bit about the bull**** love story between Sokka and Yue (who's penis haircut was the best part of the movie). Overall M.Night Shyamalan really should have made the movie much less crap for it to be enjoyable. I have never summarised a movie so bluntly before. Expand
  22. Oct 22, 2013
    5
    Not as bad as I heard it was, maybe because I haven't seen the show. Leaving that aside, the movie is just painfully mediocre, the potential is there and the CGI was great, its just not used well enough.
  23. Oct 14, 2013
    6
    I personally watched the Avatar: the Last Airbender show very occassionally, and while i liked it-it was cool, I did not watch it enough to consider myself among the biggest of fans. From this perspective, I can say I kinda enjoyed this movie.
    I thought the acting was not the best, but it wasn't Twilight bad (though Twilight, imo, was a bad series as the books as well). The CGI wasn't the
    I personally watched the Avatar: the Last Airbender show very occassionally, and while i liked it-it was cool, I did not watch it enough to consider myself among the biggest of fans. From this perspective, I can say I kinda enjoyed this movie.
    I thought the acting was not the best, but it wasn't Twilight bad (though Twilight, imo, was a bad series as the books as well). The CGI wasn't the worst, but I personally like CGI unless it is like the CGI in sitcoms on TV (like when a character dreams he has super powers and it has terribe CGI showing. them). The story is understandable in the sense that the Percy Jackson movies were- you understand it if you've read the book,or in this case watched the TV show, but it is still quite different. and the action, while not making sense sometimes (like when the earth benders float a rock rather than doing something cool) it was good enough
    I personally liked this movie. But I understand the ppl who hate it. This movie is just a generic movie, and the TV show was amazing- not to mention the lack of major parts of the show due to it being just 2 hours- and another thing, a generic movie like this does not have to exceed the 1 hour 30 min mark. I give this movie an F for the biggest fans of the series, a D-E if you were a fan but not an intense fan- like watching- the- series- fifty- times- in- a- row- intense, a C for those who uderstood the series and was just looking forward to watching a generic movie to pass the time

    *Also, I got this movie on Redbox, so I only paid 1$, so i thik it was at least worth that
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  24. Oct 6, 2013
    4
    Well it was better than the Dragonball movie that came out a while back which was also based on a famous anime hahaha but still it wasn't by much. I mean the movie started ok but I wish the story was more worked out and what's with the end, is there a sequel to it?
  25. Oct 25, 2013
    5
    This movie gets a lot of bad rap because:
    1) It wasn't as good as the series, not even close.
    2) They pronounce the names wrong (even if Shyamalan thought he had good reasoning) 3) They screwed up uncle iroh 4) They screwed up the way people are supposed to firebend. But despite this the movie still managed to entertain me and if you are a fan of the series, seeing live action bending
    This movie gets a lot of bad rap because:
    1) It wasn't as good as the series, not even close.
    2) They pronounce the names wrong (even if Shyamalan thought he had good reasoning)
    3) They screwed up uncle iroh
    4) They screwed up the way people are supposed to firebend.
    But despite this the movie still managed to entertain me and if you are a fan of the series, seeing live action bending fights really made the movie worth watching.
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  26. Apr 21, 2014
    4
    I don't think it is as bad as everyone says it is but still nothing good at all. I thought the beginning of the movie was ok introducing everything that part was entertaining enough. And then I thought it started going down hill from there with a couple memorable scenes until the end of the movie. Still not a good movie but not one of the worst either.
  27. Jul 5, 2015
    5
    This movie was based on the show, and it didn't do the show complete justice, but it's decent in its own way. I did like this movie for the visuals and the martial arts. Maybe they did alter some characters, but over all I found the film not as bad, but only for the visuals and a few scenes. I gave this a six because I felt like there was too much narration and the film did get boring aThis movie was based on the show, and it didn't do the show complete justice, but it's decent in its own way. I did like this movie for the visuals and the martial arts. Maybe they did alter some characters, but over all I found the film not as bad, but only for the visuals and a few scenes. I gave this a six because I felt like there was too much narration and the film did get boring a times. I can't say this is movie ever. I did not hate it, I just thought it was gonna be better. They changed characters way too much and really sucked all the fun out of the whole movie. The show is my favorite of all time, but the movie wasn't super great and I wouldn't recommend it. In 3D, it's horrid, but it has eye candy and alright martial artists(I am a martial artist myself). It can be entertaining at times, but at the end, it becomes lame. Expand
Metascore
20

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 33 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 33
  2. Negative: 23 out of 33
  1. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    20
    This is all enormously disappointing, of course, since the best we could hope for from a live-action "Avatar" adaptation is the mind-blowing equivalent of our first encounters with wire-fu, rather than this cartoony nonsense.
  2. The movie is "Star Wars" with martial arts, plus a touch of "The Last Emperor." Technically, it's not badly done; I enjoyed the physical clash of elements, the water balls rising like sculpture in the air.
  3. Reviewed by: Scott Bowles
    63
    He hasn't mastered the craft yet, but M. Night Shyamalan may be on to something with this action-movie thing.