Avatar vs Sherlock Holmes

Posted: January 5, 2010 in movies
Tags: ,

Dear all,

This last end-of-year movies list is colored with big box-office hits. Ranging from Avatar, Sherlock Holmes, Alvin & the chipmunk : the squeakquel (nice name choice btw), and many more ahead (e.g. Up in The Air, Brothers, Blind Side, Invictus, etc.). Each movie competes closely, though Avatar leads this 3 past week ahead with US$ 68 Mn, followed closely by Sherlock Holmes in 2nd place at US$ 38.4 and Alvin cs at US$ 36 Mn. Interestingly though, usually, if a movie has sales of US$ 30 Mn per week, they will definitely become the king of the week, but last week has told us different story.

Although Avatar has winning the ticket sales race (and already exceed US$ 1 Bn sales worldwide!! Amazing!! ), is it truly better than Sherlock Holmes? In terms of quality, etc? (PS : I exclude Alvin & the chipmunk as we all know, squeaking voice will not win over charming robert downey jr. acting, nor the touch of gifted James Cameron). Let us compare both movie, shall we? 🙂

Avatar  vs Sherlock Holmes


  • Storyline  — Spoiler alert 🙂

Avatar’s story somehow reminds me of the alternate ending of America’s invasion toward the indigenous. The arrow, bow, horses, and simplistic life that highly respect the mother nature versus the gun, machine and modern imperialism as a symbolic representative of  both parties. However though, James cameron add his originality touch into the movie, as having the Avatar program where human can control different body through neuron system (which perhaps possible sometimes in the future?) and detailed life of the Na’vi (the indigenous). It also has some positive messages to respect nature and fight for the good, even if it means that you go against your own. However though.. lets us be honest, its quite cliche and predictable rite?

Also, one small thing that bother me, is the fact that the ending pretty much happened only due to the nature’s decision to take side.. It will be much more make sense if  Jake Sully decided to steal some machine gun, bombs, and fighter-robot prior to the great war 🙂 Also, when the army comes to the air combat, i dont understand why the Na’vi does not use the birds to carry big stone and drop it to the army. It is more effective to destroy the air forces… imo  🙂 Also, one more goofs.. If i remember correctly, the Na’vi arrow failed to penetrate human windshield in the first battle, but.. in the last battle, it can..! What a goof :)) In addition, it will be more awesome if James Cameron add twist, let say by having one of the Na’vi as the traitor to their colony :p

Sherlock Holmes, does not meet my expectations.. It supposed to be a great detective story, which i hope was required the audience to think hardly and guess the twist and conspiracy behind it.. However though, they give all the hint just right under our nose, and therefore.. it stole my excitement to guess the next move that Sherlock will make, or what will Lord Blackwood did. Even the trick that Lord Blackwood use, some of them i can pretty much guess (like the trick of how he survive his assassination – of being hang -)..  In addition, it feel too short.. It will be more awesome if and only if, they exploit more of the other enemy, Professor James Moriarty.. 

So, from the storyline, i think Avatar wins the battle!

  • Acting

Avatar is colored with Sigourney Weaver, Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana and many more. The acting is enjoyable though im not sure if it will win any Oscar for the main actor and actress yet.. One thing that i want to highlight is that, i think Sam Worthington (the one who play Jake Sully) can emerge to another big actors if he is given more challenging roles (his character as Jake Sully with marine background and wheelchair limitation is good one, but i think he need to take more difficult roles like what Heath Ledger, Bradd Pitt or Johny Depp did). I remember him playing at Terminator 3 : Salvation along Christian Bale, and he stole my attention as he showing lots of potential that can be polished more… 🙂

In the other hand, Robert Downey Jr. create a new “Sherlock Holmes” that i really enjoy a lot. He is super entertaining, stealing the show and provide depth on the complexity of Sherlock’s personality. His Sherlock is original, refreshing and agreeable. Jude Law, starring as Watson, and Rachel McAdams also accompany him with a good acting.  One thing that bother me is the Andy Garcia picturesque of Lord Blackwood. Its not creepy, not mystical and somehow, i feel his Blackwood as just an ordinary villain. It was not something that i expected..  Perhaps, it should be played by Kevin Spacey (from Se7en) or Anthony Hopkins or Joaquin Phoenix ? 🙂

In this battle, i think Sherlock wins..

  • Visual effects

Avatar with a 3D is a truly beautiful masterpiece! All the details of the Avatar life feel like a heaven to me:) Very brilliant! You have to watch Avatar for experiencing true visual masterpiece! it does exceed all of other films! ever!!

Sherlock Holmes, in the other hand, provide a dark satmosphere to bring back the era of London in 1800s which i also like a lot. However, compare with the fantastic high budgeted movie like Avatar, everyone surely know who’s the winner in this thing 🙂 If Avatar does not win Oscar for its visual effect cinematography, perhaps the jurors are smoking weeds and in a “high” state when give their vote 🙂

  • Music / background

To be honest.. somehow, when i watched Avatar, there are several scenes where i think the music is pretty off..  Its a little bit disappointing..  The music used in Sherlock in the other hand, really fit with the London 1800s era.. Thats exactly the music that i would imagine of Sherlock! 🙂

  • Other details

Guy Ritchie adding modernity stuff into his Sherlock Holmes, making it feel alive in 21th century. Though some of the hardcore fans of Sherlock may disagree on his picturesque, i think that also contributes to the excitement that the movie offer.

Avatar, in the other hand, in my humble opinion, show some discrepancy on the technology used in 2154. For example, its bomb to be dropped at the Holy tree of the Na’vi. Its dropped manually!! Cmon. Let be honest. Imagine us at 2154.. What kind of bomb that possibly human use at that era? I would imagine it to be something liquid, nuclear thingy that can be operated remotely.. or dropped through a specific tunnel, instead of opening the back of the heli to drop the bomb.. 

  • Punch effect

So, after reviewing all the details above, the last important thing for me is the punch effect that both movie has to me. A great movie that won oscars usually left a very strong impression that stays after several days, even months. Movie like Lord of The Rings, The Shawshank Redemption, the Godfather, The Green Mile, Dark Knight, The Schlinder’s List really punch me at my heart and i love each moment and scenes in the movie. I can even recall some of the most famous scenes clearly though i havent watched it again after several years!  🙂

So, how is the punch effect of Avatar and Sherlock Holmes?

Avatar’s impression stays for one day and then i got over it.  Mostly due to the fact of its visual effects magic..  In the other hand, Sherlock Holmes only left impression that stayed  for several hours.  It mostly due to the acting that Robert Downey jr show 🙂

So.. i think, in general.. Avatar won over Sherlock Holmes. But not by much difference. Both movies are great and i think you will definitely enjoy it 🙂 — much enjoyable than the silly boring torturing New Moon. 🙂

Are you agree with me?

Cheers to 2010,  – Nia –

  1. wendude says:

    Did you watch avatar at Blitz or XXI?
    XXI’s Dolby 3D is far better compared to Blitz’s Real 3D.

    the difference can clearly be seen at one scene where Jake Scully holds a photo of grace and the Na’vi. With Dolby 3D the photo has depth where you can see some figures in the photo seem floating, while in Real 3D the photo looks like ordinary one. By the way, I watched the movie twice =), first one was at Blitz and then at XXI.

    • sofia07 says:

      Hehe.. funny though. i also watched the movie twice, both at Blitz and XXI.

      However, i like the Blitz one better coz the 3d glasses there is more comfy and nice to wear 🙂 Unfortunately i didnt spot the photo’s differences.

  2. qonita says:

    i only watched avatar..still dont have time for sherlock holmes (or money actually :P)
    for avatar, everything is great except the story hehe
    maybe the james cameron didnt have many time for making great story…the story is still cliche and so predictable..like kissing,the avatar hehe
    n i almost slept for first 30 minutes 😛
    but the effect is greaatt,,,i love it

  3. luri says:

    AVATAR remind me: mother nature is mother of all creature. She never on the side of human who destroy it, but always on the side of balancing our nature/life. Lingkungan bkn warisan utk dhabiskn, tp pinjaman yg hrs djaga/kembangkn utk generasi anakcucu. Sy mau sayangi/lindungi bumi selagi msh bisa, sblm kita menginvasi… planet lain krn bumi sdh ga layak ditinggali lagi, he3… Start from myself/fam then others.

  4. Winnu Ayi says:

    I don’t watch, either. Any possibilitiy to watch in my PC? Heuh?!

    • qonita says:

      @winnu: if u watch avatar in pc it will reduce the pleasure and the great effects of this movie…coz the effects is the main menu of avatar 😀

  5. asaputra says:

    I like Sherlock Holmes better. As for me, Avatar sucks, despite all the praises. 😀

  6. fikar says:

    i watched avatar 3d, though a certain someone made me lose the first 30 minutes of it. but i don’t think the 3d effect did quite well. it feels kind of disturbing the scenes, isn’t it? the glasses, too. totally uncomfortable. i’d love to watch it again in normal 2d version.
    anyway, one reason why AVATAR could raise lots of money is because the expensiveness of its tickets, as TIME said. as in Korea, where i need 3000won more to rent those black glasses

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