Just returned from seeing the movie Avatar (After several attempts - it's very popular!). Thoughts? Gob-smackingly awesome, never seen such amazing visual effects. Calling it CGI or computer effects is insulting I think, because that goes nowhere close to describing it - virtual reality is a better fit. At no point did I ever think of any of it as anything less than real.
The story was simple but totally effective at holding your interest. I liked it more than I expected actually. It does the job very well of creating the setting for the stunning visual sequences, some of which were just breath-taking. The flying scenes in particular I just gawped at - it was like being in a Roger Dean or Rodney Matthews fantasy painting for real (the whole planet seemed to have been pulled right out of Roger Dean's work to be honest). Extraordinary.
I liked the 3D a lot too, not having seen one before I was worried it just wouldn't feel right to me but it quickly did. My only problem was the shit 3D glasses we had that seemed to have lenses that were too small and were foggy around the edges. I'm amazed frankly that James Cameron hadn't designed, manufactured and shipped his own 3D glasses around the world for people to see his visual masterpiece with. He probably wanted to. It seems a massive oversight to spend 5 years and $300 million creating an entire alien ecosystem battling a future human flying arsenal only to have the effect spoilt at the very very last point before those images hit the viewers eyes. A minor gripe but I hope something that will be improved in the future if 3D cinema is to become the norm.