Avatar 2: The Way of Water Makes Waves


Jaiden Herzog, Staff Writer

On December 16th, 2022, Avatar 2: The Way of Water (rated PG-13) was shown in American movie theaters for the first time.  It is a sequel to the 2009 Avatar movie starring Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana, who respectively play(ed) the 2 main characters.  The director, James Cameron, hoped, and continues to hope, that the box ratings and fan love will skyrocket before the release of another sequel.  


The story starts off with the Sully family running away from the Sky people, and, more specifically, the resurrected Miles Quartich.  They abandon their home in the forest and seek refuge from the Metkayina clan of the sea.  They are welcomed, and problems arise as Jake Sully and his family are further chased into a corner.  


It is agreed upon that the characters were beautifully showcased by an incredibly talented cast full of many famous actors.  The main male character, Jake Sully, is played by the famous Sams Worthington who notedly played in Hart’s War, Terminator Salvation, and Hacksaw Ridge.  Neytiri, the main female protagonist, is played by Zoe Saldana, who plays in The Guardians of the Galaxy, The Avengers movies, Star Trek, and Pirates of the Caribbean movies.  That doesn’t even begin to cover the background of these wonderful individuals. The Sully kids (in order) are played by Jamie Flatters (Neteyam), Britain Dalton (Lo’ak), Trinity Bliss (Tuk), and Sigourney Weaver (Kiri).


 Continuing, Stephen Lang, playing Quartich, the main villain of the franchise, returned to the sequel, adding spice to the film’s plot.  The new cast includes Kate Winslet (Rose from Titanic), playing Ronal, the Queen of the Metkayina people, and Cliff Curtis, who plays her king, Tonowari.  Their children are Tsireya (Bailey Bass) and Aonung (Filip Gejlijo). 


There are millions of fans across the globe in love with the movie’s visuals and characters.  The movie has dominated major social media platforms such as TikTok, Instagram, and Youtube.  There are hundreds of thousands of character edits out there on the wide web, clearly showing the popularity of both the new and old characters.  


Adding onto this, the movie lasts a whole 3 hours and 12 minutes.  “Yeah, we bought two large popcorns.  One at the beginning and one in the middle,” remarks movie spectator, Sean Herzog.  This was expected by the general audience considering that the first Avatar lasted 2 hours and 42 minutes, longer than the usual film.  Having this length of time means that directors have to step their game up to make plot progression smooth and capturing.


 In this sequel, however, the plot and movie both progressed slowly unlike Avatar 1, in which every moment was necessary and intriguing.  There were several filler moments included in The Way of Water, probably as a result of attempts to lengthen the movie to match the film time of the first film.  “Some scenes just weren’t necessary.  It was boring and lost my interest.  The first Avatar was so much better.  The second one was just to make money,” says Kaitlyn Wildoner, who watched the film a month ago.  The movie itself was nothing special or entirely intriguing.  The visual effects made it capturing with people all over the world interested in extraterrestrial life.  


The character development was present, but characters did not change much at all.  Few problems were solved and the movie ended with the same issue as the beginning.  It was a full circle.  The story was simply not interesting, but the characters, visuals, and fighting were, gaining the movie its current popularity. 


All in all, the movie was your standard fantasy-action movie paired with out-of-this-world visuals and a famous cast.  It took a full 13 years to get a sequel to Avatar 1, and James Cameron has promised audiences across the world Avatar 3, 4, and 5 in the future.  Now, the world awaits the next movie’s release in December 2024. Will Avatar 3: The Seed Bearer be any better than The Way of Water?  It’s up to the world to decide.