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July 8, 2009 / Ryan Cohick

Could M. Night Shyamalan finally be emerging from his slump?

00010920I’m not afraid to admit that “Signs” is one of my all-time favorite movies. When I watch that, like I did the other day, I feel good about M. Night Shyamalan and his unique approach at writing, directing and movie-making in general. But then I think ahead to “Lady in the Water” and “The Happening,” both of which were barely passable as okay movies, I worry that not much lies in the future for this promising movie-maker.

I found out tonight that Shyamalan is working on a new movie based on a Nickelodeon cartoon, called “The Last Airbender.”

I’m not going to lie, when a friend sent me the link to the trailer for “The Last Airbender,” I wasn’t initially all that interested (sorry Zack). But then I saw that Shyamalan wrote and directed this cartoon-to-live-action film. This instantly perked my interest.

The one thing that excites me the most about Shyamalan’s newest project is that it’s based on something that already has an established story and structure. Surely there’s promise within that aspect, right? Maybe all Shyamalan has needed all along was a good lead to work off of. Right?

On top of that, “The Last Airbender” is a fantasy story. Based on Shyamalan’s previous fantasy-mixed works like “Lady in the Water” and “Unbreakable,” maybe a true fantasy within its own world is something else that could help Shyamalan along on the path to another good movie.

The Last Airbender movie poster

But what exactly is this “Last Airbender” that my friend knows all about? I had never heard of it. Wikipedia quickly filled me in, noting that the three-season cartoon on Nickelodeon was pretty popular. According to the article, “The series follows Aang and his friends, who must save the world by defeating the Fire Lord and ending the destructive war with the Fire Nation.”

Sound interesting? No, not really. Watch the trailer and then tell me what you think:

Thinking what Shyamalan could do with this series and subject matter, especially after seeing the trailer, has me interested enough to at least go see the movie.

Now that you know a little more, the Wikipedia entry for the movie itself might fill the gaps:

In a world where the four elements can be controlled by people known as “Benders”, the Fire Nation is waging a ruthless, oppressive war to control the other great nations. The only hope for stopping the brutal war led by the Firebenders rests on the shoulders of a reluctant young boy named Aang (Noah Ringer). The last known survivor of the peaceful Air Nomads and the Airbenders, Aang is the “Avatar”. The “Avatar” is the physical re-incarnation of the world spirit, with the power to manipulate all four elements and draw upon the power, knowledge, and experiences of the Avatar’s previous incarnations. The Avatar is responsible for maintaining balance between the four nations of the world and the spirit world, hence keeping the balance of the world. Aided by a protective teenage Waterbender named Katara (Nicola Peltz) and her bull-headed brother Sokka (Jackson Rathbone), Aang begins a perilous journey to restore balance to their war-torn world. Standing in their way are Fire Nation Admiral Zhao (Aasif Mandvi) and Prince Zuko (Dev Patel), the banished prince of the Fire Nation who seeks to capture the young Avatar to regain his honor.

Now, the interesting aspect of all of this is that this movie is supposed to be the first of a trilogy. I imagine that means there’s a lot riding on Shyamalan to output something good enough to build momentum into the next two installments. I wonder if this means he’ll direct the entire trilogy or just this first film.

So what do you think? Could Shyamalan finally be onto something good?

I, for one, am intrigued. “The Last Airbender” is slated for a July 2010 release.

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8 Comments

Leave a Comment
  1. djef pro / Jan 11 2010 11:00 am

    Very cool movie

    !GREAT!

    • Natasha / Mar 20 2010 5:46 pm

      what do you think about the movie is cool

  2. Hyldeihera / Jan 19 2010 4:00 pm

    Great job. Thank you for sharing this information. I found it very needful for me. But what do you think about

  3. Basilia / Jan 20 2010 7:33 am

    Great job. Thank you for sharing this information. I found it very needful for me. But what do you think about

  4. Gonzalo Kasparian / Feb 9 2010 7:28 pm

    Hello, firstly I want to tell you that I try to follow your blog. Great post, I entirely agree with you. Have a great day matey.

  5. Todd Maske / Mar 4 2010 3:19 pm

    Thanks so much for this post- I needed to write one like this for my readers, I’ll write it in my own words ofcourse. 🙂

  6. Natasha / Mar 20 2010 5:44 pm

    I think that the movie the last air bander is going to be the best. Bcause i am a big fan of the cartoon and i am a big fan of the movie even if the movies has not come out in therters yet I can tell if the movie is the est ust by looking at the tinyest snnek peeks. i think that you have a good idea about makeing the the cartoon Avatar The last Air Bender into a human verion. I had that idea about tring the cartton into a human verion ever since the show ended but i knew that i would not able to make it the best but i did not care so i tired my best to make it my best. But when i herd that you were makeing the movie The Last Air Bender and that it was the same thing i was hppy because i know that you did somthing for me and I know That you willMake it as good as you can.

    fROM: Natasha .O. Brasnov Milwaukee WI

    P.S will see the movie as soon as it cames out in the movies. Alco i want to ask you for some advice on acting i am in a school play. Email me back

  7. inquisitor / Jun 10 2010 12:59 pm

    Just wondering.. If it’s intended to to be a trilogy, will the movie just be basically a live action version of season 1 cartoon?

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