Ye gods and little fishies. Visually, this is one stunning movie. Plot-wise, well, I'd say that:
HERE BE SPOILERS ...
But I'd be lying.
Folks, at no time during the course of this movie did anyone in the audience not know what was going to happen next. Not only that, but within 30 seconds of meeting character, you know each and every thing that they're going to do for the rest of the film.
The Hero: He's going to be sent to infiltrate the Fuzzy-Wuzzys, will fall in love with the daughter of the Head Fuzzy-Wuzzy, betray the Fuzzy-Wuzzys, prove himself, lead the tribe in battle against his (former) people and have a dramatic Final Confrontation with Chief Bad Guy.
Scarred Military Dude: This is Chief Bad Guy. A closet genocidal maniac, he will recruit Our Hero to spy on the Fuzzys, at the proper time will show his true genocidal colours, at which point Our Hero will See The Error Of His Ways, whereupon Scarred Military Dude will (temporarily) separate Our Hero from his One True Love, and will die in a climactic Final Confrontation with Our Hero.
Crusty, Yet Benevolent and Wise Scientist: Doomed. Toast. Life expectancy of an asthmatic fruit fly. Only present for two reasons: 1) To utter Last Word Of Wisdom to Our Hero; and 2) Die, preferably before the Last Battle.
Our Hero's One True Love: Will find Our Hero, rescuing him from Certain Death in the process. Will hate him initially, yet be forced to teach him the Ways of the World, before falling in love with him, aardvarking him in A Significant Place just before Scarred Military Dude starts the genocide, causing her to hate Our Hero, before being shown Our Hero's True Feelings and falling back in love with him.
And as soon as you see the Na'vi you know that they're going to wind up going mano-a-mano with the
Yeah, Cameron ripped off Lucas, too, so you already know the end results on that one.
And let me tell you, young Jimmy Cameron is right fond of laying his politics on with a trowel before beating them home with a four-pound sledge hammer. Subtle, the man is not.
Visually, however, Avatar is a feast. Pandora comes alive, and is about as completely immersive as any other movie I've been to. The level of detail on that moon in general is stunning, and on the Na'vi -- well, allow me to put this as succinctly as possible:
300 million dollars to perfect digital jiggle. The man is a god to me.
Go see this movie. Set your mind on auto-pilot, don't expect any plot surprises, ignore the gaping plot-holes and the heavy-handed politics and just enjoy the visual experience.