As expected, critics are currently raving about the visual effects of “The Way of Water”. Variety’s Courtney Howard went so far as to call it a “captivating, awe-inspiring masterclass in world-building”, due in part to its beautiful visuals. I mean, we could have seen this coming from a mile away. Seriously, have you guys set those water animations?
James Cameron & Co. delivers yet another riveting, awe-inspiring masterclass in world-building with #AvatarTheWayOfWater . Immersive, emotionally engaging and epically entertaining, it’s a thrill ride. CG artifice melts away where we only see the characters’ humanity rule pic.twitter.com/6CksGpEumJ
— Courtney Howard (@Lulamaybelle) 6 December 2022
If you’re into more technical talk, Reel Blend’s Kevin McCarthy has you covered. He called the sharp 48FPS and 3D technology “some of the most captivating immersion [he’s] ever seen.”
James Cameron’s #AvatarTheWayOfWater is a monumental filmmaking achievement with a good balance between technical and emotional. The 48fps 3D experience has some of the most immersive immersion I’ve ever seen. Felt like a kid again watching T2 for the first time. Amazing. pic.twitter.com/cfiMADJzU4
— Kevin McCarthy (@KevinMcCarthyTV) 6 December 2022
If you can believe it, some say it’s an improvement over the original. Does this confirm that Cameron is the greatest sequel director of all time? Maybe!
Happy to say #AvatarTheWayOfWater is phenomenal! Bigger, better and more emotional than #Avatar, the film is visually stunning, visceral and incredibly captivating. The story, the acting, the spirituality, the beauty – this is filmmaking and storytelling at its absolute best. pic.twitter.com/RicnpDghrx
— Erik Davis (@ErikDavis) 6 December 2022
I saw you #AvatarTheWayOfWater – if you think you’ve seen #Avatar Think again. Only repetition from OG is that “never experienced anything like it” awe. Better than 1st? Single. The 3D water world and creatures are so surreal it’s downright moving. It’s a great Titanic tribute. pic.twitter.com/EInKRDeumD
— Nikki Novak (@NikkiNovak) 6 December 2022
Of course, there’s apparently a lot to love about the film outside of the visuals. Another constant in these early reactions is the rich character building. After all, what good are impressive visuals if the characters we follow aren’t properly developed?
#AvatarTheWayOfWater is quite incredible. I had faith that James Cameron would raise the bar with the effects, but these images are impressive. One wonderful frame after another. But what I dug the most is how the technical feats always feel in service of character and world building. pic.twitter.com/MXeN3z8BnP
— Perri Nemiroff (@PNemiroff) 6 December 2022
Even those who were previously lukewarm on the first “Avatar” way back in 2009 are singing the praises of “The Way of Water.”
As someone who LIKED – but didn’t LOVE – the first AVATAR, let me tell you:
AVATAR: THE WAY OF WATER blew me away.
The sequel was vastly superior in terms of visuals, storytelling, and performances, and left my jaw on the floor throughout the entire playtime.
James Cameron is the GOD of sequels. pic.twitter.com/1cw6C94O4f
— Jake Hamilton (@JakesTakes) 6 December 2022
But if there’s one takeaway from these early reviews, it’s that we should never bet against Jimmy C and his ambitions.
Avatar The Way of Water: lol imagine being stupid enough to bet against James Cameron. or teenage alien Sigourney Weaver. or giant whales inscribed on papyrus.
light years better than the first and easily one of the best theater experiences in ages. streaming found dead in a ditch.
— david ehrlich (@davidehrlich) 6 December 2022
AVATAR: THE WAY OF WATER: Yeah, never bet against James Cameron. Trying to save on hyperbole, but I’ve never seen anything like it from a technical, visual standpoint. It’s overwhelming. Perhaps too overwhelming. Sometimes I’d miss plot points because I’m staring at a Pandora fish
— Mike Ryan (@mikeryan) 6 December 2022
James Cameron is once again showing filmmakers how it’s done. I’ve said it a thousand times. Never doubt him. AVATAR: THE WAY OF WATER is how you make an epic blockbuster. Emotional, visceral and as big as movies get. @officialavatar
— Josh Horowitz (@joshuahorowitz) 6 December 2022
Never bet against @JimCameron. His #AvatarTheWayOfWater surpasses the original on every level. Amazing graphics, but a much more emotional connection to the characters and story. In the final hour, Cameron flexes every muscle, reminding blockbuster filmmakers how it’s done. pic.twitter.com/C7lpBs6y5U
— Sean O’Connell (@Sean_OConnell) 6 December 2022
Even other filmmakers are praising “The Way of Water,” with one of the first being Guillermo del Toro, who tweeted his thoughts on the “swimming performance” on Thanksgiving. Talk about legends supporting legends!
A staggering achievement – AVATAR TWOW is full of majestic vistas and emotions on an epic, epic scale. A champion at the peak of his powers… https://t.co/tG6I16JlhM
— Guillermo del Toro (@RealGDT) 24 November 2022