Avatar: The Way of Water

Director: James Cameron
Year Released: 2022
Rating: 1.5

Evil Space Marines, once again led by a genetically-modified Colonel Miles Quaritch (Stephen Lang) along with General Ardmore (Edie Falco), are planning yet another invasion of the planet Pandora (because humans botched Earth up ... no surprise there), so Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) and his family need to partner up with the Metkayina clan (or "reef people") - who communicate with the whale-like tulkun - to properly defend themselves.  While it's impressive visually - and justifiably won the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects (which the majority of the director's movies have been given) - with the epic set design and gorgeous underwater imagery, this is tedious to get through, like a video game without a controller: there's a lot of fluff in the middle to cater to those who actually enjoy the "lore" of these fantasy stories (and a nod to Androcles and the Lion when it comes to the outcast Payakan creature) and it's kind of strange that Cameron thinks the audience should "care" about these wacky looking ectomorphic humanoids.  It clearly has its fans and made over two billion at the box office, so I'll defer to them ... but honestly, I prefer Waterworld.