The journey from "Terminator" to "Avatar"



Most of the people who grew up in the 90s, I am sure, like me, were so enamored by James Cameroon's Terminator movie series. I remember profoundly the sheer thrill when Arnie finds the kid and begins his battle with the Liquid Man aka the Machines, jumpin off in the subway, while Connor speeds off in his motor cycle. Although I was too busy enjoying the action sequences and thrills in the movie during my childhood days, I began to reflect on the idea of "Man Vs Machines" during my college days when I became a movie buff. While hollywood has produced several movies on the idea of Man Vs Machines, I personally feel, Terminator stood tall amidst the rest of the movies which brought about this conflict. Looking back, I am quite amused how film makers those days began harboring doubts about the Evil Machine, conspiring behind its wires, to conquer the world. One can trace the beginnings of this fear to George Orwell, who shook the world in 1948 with his disturbing dystopian view of the world controlled by the Big Brother. Terminator begins on a similar note with the Earth fully devastated by a nuclear holocaust. The only ray of hope lies with the machines which have come back to the present to save the mankind! Whoah!! Most of the filmmakers assumed that machines would become really smart and would act independently with distinct conscience. In retrospect, when we look around, we realize how different things are. Well, as some body said, future isn't what they thought it would be. Welcome to Web2.0 era

Web 2.0 is all about us. As brilliantly depicted in this video, machines are not using us. Machines are us. If you are still confused, let us get some wisdom from the same filmmaker who gave us one of the amazing movies in a life time. No prizes for guessing which one this is: Avatar. First of all, one cannot imagine how could a person caress an idea in his creative bosom for 12 long years and nurture it with godly patience and come up with a movie which blows off your mind completely, making you look at the world with awe! This isnt movie making! It deems to stand next to a spiritual sadhana by a yogi who is so passionate about his craft and gives 100 percent to create a miracle!

While we kowtow at the altar of the geniuses who created the Avatar, one can take some amazing insights from Avatar, if we care to look deep and understand the future! Call it an act of supreme innocence or extreme intelligence, I am amazed how the same film maker who gave us Terminator seems to have understood the future with Avatar. Well, let me explain how!

While Terminator is all about master mind robots with evil machinations, Avatar's technology is simply a clothed human skeleton. Empowered by the spirit of the humans, he can turn into a saviour for the mankind. The interesting contrast is, while Terminator is a guided robot lying in the cloak of a human being, Avatar is all about the human spirit, cloaked in the technologically efficient body.

Does this ring a familiar bell?? Who, after all, could imagine that the power of Web could empower humans like never before and guide them towards building a fair,sensitive society. We've come closer to a brilliant conception of a society where everyone can be heard and as Seth Godin brilliantly says, it is so easy to be remarkable! Today's technology requires us to pour our heart into its sinews and it takes care of the rest by letting the whole world know about it. I admit, I am making it sound so easy! However, looking at some of the Twitter success stories, it isnt difficult at all. While I am typing this, I am reminded of the amazing Wall- E. While the makers of Wall-E beautifully portrayed the prevalent apathy towards our environment, driven by our consumerist culture, they went a little overboard in assuming that technology would separate us even further and debase our lives. No, they got it wrong! Looking again at Avatar, the most fascinating aspect in this dream saga remains the way he showcases the deepest desire in the cockles of a human's heart to connect and merge with nature. No body in their wildest dream thought that technology would serendipitously make pathway towards communion with nature!

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