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Movie Review Report Avatar Philosophy Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Philosophy
Wordcount: 2771 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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Avatar is a 2009 science fiction epic movie production written and directed by James Cameron. This film is set in the year 2154, when humans are mining a precious mineral called ‘unobtanium’ on Pandora, a lush moon of a gas giant in the Alpha Centauri star system. The expansion of the mining colony threatens the continued existence of a local tribe of Na’vi -a sentient humanoid species indigenous to Pandora.

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In this movie preview report, we are here to study the applications and technology of artificial intelligence that have been applied through out the whole filming of this movie, Avatar. The objective of building such applications and technology will also be included as well as to discuss the possible future and impact of implementation such applications and technology in near future. Besides that, we will also discuss on ethical issues faced for the development of such technologies.

Last but not least, this report will be concluded with our opinions on Artificial Intelligence versus Natural Intelligence.


Avatar is the latest production written and directed science fiction epic movie by James Cameron. This movie takes place in the year of 2154 and brings us to a spectacular world beyond imagination called Pandora, a lush, Earth-like moon of the planet Polyphemus in the Alpha Centauri star system. It is about a journey about a reluctant hero that fights to save the alien world which he has learned to call home. Jake Sully (Sam Worthington), a former Marine confined to a wheelchair, replaces his replaces his twin brother, a scientist trained as an avatar operator but murdered in a robbery to travel light to the human outpost in Pandora. Pandora is a place where corporations are mining a rare mineral called ‘unobtanium’ that is believed to solve Earth’s energy crisis.

Due to the toxic atmosphere in Pandora, an Avatar program has been created which human’s ‘driver’ have their consciousness linked to an avatar, a remotely-controlled biological body that can survive in the lethal air. These avatars are genetically engineered hybrids of humans DNA mixed with the native’s DNA of Pandora, the Na’vi.

Jake can walk again in his avatar form. He is a given a mission which is to infiltrate the Na’vi, who become the major obstacle to mine the precious ore. Neytiri, a Na’vi who saved Jake’s life changes everything. Jake is taken by her to the clan and learns to become one of the Na’vi, which involves many tests and adventures. As Jake’s relationship with Neytiri deepens, he learns to respect the Na’vi way and finally takes his place among them. Soon, the fate on the entire world lies on him where he faced an ultimate test – his loyalty to Earth or to Pandora. This leads them in an epic battle that will decide nothing less than the fate of an entire world.

the Applications / Technology of Artificial Intelligence in Avatar

avatar is a science fiction epic movie full with Artificial Intelligence applications and technologies. One of the remarkable technology of Artificial Intelligence that is implemented in Avatar will be the sophisticated interfacing device, a human telepathically ‘drives’ this Avatar body, allowing one to experience Pandora and enter the surreal world that is somewhere between the ultimate dream of mankind and the reality of extra solar planetary habitability, as stipulated by science. This technology is a kind of technology that allows one such as Jake in Avatar who is a paraplegic to be able to walk again but of course in the Avatar state. If this technology is successfully built and in fact it is in the development progress, a paralyzed person’s will be able to walk again, to see, to hear and etc.

Robotics is also a type of technology and application of Artificial Intelligence used in Avatar whereby humans gear up in Amplified Mobility Platform (AMP) suits for work, combat and stomping through Pandora’s rainforest. These armored exoskeletal vehicles are very similar to the Armored Personnel Units featured in The Matrix Revolutions and also in Terminator Salvation. The movements of a human operator’s arms and legs are translated to the suit’s exterior limbs and ‘amplified’. A soldier’s strength is amplified using combustion engine-driven hydraulics that behaves as artificial muscles.

Besides that, controlling another being (Avatar) using the Psionic Link is the next technology of Artificial Intelligence used in Avatar. Psionic Link is a popular concept used in other fictional media such as the Star Trek universe, Dungeons & Dragons, Starcraft and etc. The human controller can remotely control the avatar body out in the wilds of Pandora by using Psionic link technology. All sensory input provides to the controller, as all motor control provide to the body. The controller lives essentially through the avatar, and is completely unaware when one body is linked. Each avatar is genetically keyed to its respective human controller. The human volunteer then becomes a controller where the head is fitted into a helmet-like device and a Psionic Link interface which senses and transmits mental energy, as well as filling the brain with return signal.

Last but not least, cloning an alien entity is also the applications of Artificial Intelligence used in Avatar. As mentioned in the introduction, the atmosphere in Pandora is toxic to human. So as to survive in Pandora, humans have to wear a special kind of breathing gear which is also known as the exopack in Avatar. Hence, to allow human live in Pandora as comfortable as in Earth, the best solution is to be one of the native, the Na’vi. In Avatar, human’s DNA and the DNA from the Na’vi are recombined to create an in-vitro embryo, which is a genetic composite of the alien and human donor. The in-vitro embryo takes the shape of a Na’vi, and can live comfortably on Pandora, but it has enough human neurophysiology to be used as an Avatar, or surrogate body. The human volunteer then becomes the controller. Using Psionic Link technology, the human controller can remotely control the Avatar body out in the wilds of Pandora. This is an application which is no doubt have a lot of similarities as cloning except this application is not on cloning the same DNA materials of a particular living creature.

objective of building such APPLIcations / technology

One of the objective of building such applications or technologies is to give a new lease on life especially for people with disabilities. Like what we can see from the movie- Avatar, Jake Sully the leading actor who is a paraplegic is able to experience walking and running again in his Avatar state through the sophisticated interfacing device while undergoing the Avatar program. This technology certainly will bring benefits to humankind and upgrade the social status of the unfortunate one and afford the handicapped people.

Another objective is to avoid unnecessary human’s loss and also enhancing security and the technology of weapons by building the robotics technology such as Amplified Mobility Platform (AMP) suit. This technology will certainly give benefits to the military as this robotics technology is able to amplify strength using combustion engine-driven hydraulics that behaves as artificial muscles and give super-strength to a soldier. It also gives a soldier to stand a better chance of survival and protecting themselves from danger as the ‘shell’ of the suit will shield the soldier from fatal harm.

As for the Psionic Link technology, the objective behind this technology is no doubt to control human minds. But if it is used in the right way, it will bring the best benefits out of it. For example, unexpected accidents do happen in a surgery due to uncontrolled activities or reflex actions of the brain. But with Psionic Link, surgeons might be able to control the activities in the brain thus, decreases the percentage of fatality in an operation surgery. When it comes to brain-computer interfaces to control robot arms and type and speak through machines, scientists in real life are making advance after advance.

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Lastly, the technology of human-alien cloning technique applied in Avatar. Humans are greedy. It is human’s dreams and nature to be perfect or near perfect. With this cloning application, the objective to own all good physical traits is able to achieve. This technology also provides more rooms of improvement on the cloning technique used currently and set a challenge to the advancement of cloning technique technology.


In this discussion section, we are going to discuss about:

Justification on the possibilities to implement the system and tools based on the technologies in Avatar 10 years from now?

We believed everything is possible. With the rapid and fast improvement of technology, yes, we believe that it is possible that the system and tools based on the technologies in Avatar will be possible to implement 10 years from now or even a shorter period of 10 years. Scientists in real life are making advance after advance so it will not come as a surprise that more advance technology of the system and tools based in Avatar will be built. After all, half of the technologies and applications in Avatar is already being studied and in research. For example, the project of developing an exoskeletal, ‘neuroprosthethic’ device that fits around a paralyzed person’s body and receives commands from one’s mind is being experimenting by Miguel Nicolelis, a neuroscientist at Duke University and lead researcher for the multinational Walk Again Project, based in Brazil and the Amplified Mobility Platform (AMP) suits is currently in research by the U.S. military -The Army’s research and development branch, DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) and a Japanese researchers at a company called CYBERDYNE. Besides that, social climate is ripe. This is because many people begin to realize that Artificial Intelligence is able to help solve their problems in life. As such, works on researching and development are being carried out at ease.

Ethical issues related to the development of technologies found in Avatar.

From Avatar, one cannot inhale freely at Pandora due to the toxic atmosphere there. In order to survive there, one has to wear a breathing gear (known as exopack in Avatar) or change into Avatar state to become one of the Na’vi to survive the lethal air. We watch the transformation of Jake and the difference of him in human and in Avatar state. As a human, Jake unable to walk as he is confined to the wheel chair but in the Avatar state, he is able to walk. If this transformation machine of transferring oneself genetically to another state technology successfully built – the sophisticated interfacing device, a human telepathically ‘drives’ this Avatar body, does that mean human can choose to either to stay in their original human state or even go to another state that they prefer, being physically perfect as in no longer paralysis and even for beauty purposes. Human no longer need to worry about being physically unable and their physical appearance. In fact they do not even need to suffer and feel any loss due to accident if they are in time to transfer themselves to another state. If one to choose to be immortal, they can just transfer themselves to the Avatar state to stay alive and live eternally. But it is appropriate to do so? The issue arise here is similar to the ethical issue as cloning. When one transform to another state due to aging, what happened to their human state? To be composed or just leave it as the human state which is as good as dead since their ‘soul’ is sort of ripped off from the original state to be in another state.

Overcrowding and living unreal will the next ethical issues to be discussed. If everyone chose to change to another state, the world will be overcrowded with humans and another form of living state. Though humans might live in another state, but states, the human and another will need foods and nourishments to continue for survival sake. This eventually will caused imbalance in the ecosystem and starvation will strike. Living unreal means leading life in a unnatural way where one uses a ‘shell’ to hide the imperfect part that is bestowed with and to survive under a ‘human make shell’. This is strongly against certain religions whereby most religions believed that whatever is bestowed is to be appreciated and not to be violated as when we are transforming ourselves, we are practically playing God, the creator mankind and Mother Nature.


In this section of movie preview report, we are going to share our opinions on:

Does Artificial Intelligence really help humans?

In our opinion, we believe that Artificial Intelligence will definitely help us in any sort of ways. The advancement of science and technology is rapidly improving everyday; humans have more and more needs and higher expectation to achieve. However, not everything can be done by the humans itself. No doubt science and technology do help but what is science and technology without intelligence, it is just a kind of technology that probably help humans to solve an issues with the assistance of humans and will not able to help more than that. But, with Artificial Intelligence engineered and incorporated into the technology available, this will certainly be the best usage of Artificial Intelligence whereby many unsolved problems can be solved. For instance, robots are a good example of the usage of Artificial Intelligence whereby robots can do many things humans unable to do and the good parts, it can be done in a fast, precise and the right manner. Besides that, robots can take over humans in performing dangerous or hazardous job and even task humans that do not like doing it. In fact with the application of Artificial Intelligence technology in robots, humans can simply ask the robots to do anything. But nevertheless, there are things where robots can never replace. No matter how perfect an artificial intelligence technology is, we believed that feeling and humans’ instinct will never be able to engineered through Artificial Intelligence technology.

All in all, we do agree that Artificial Intelligence will really help humans in many ways but not everything. Humans need Artificial Intelligence to help in their life but not completely replacing them.

Does Natural Intelligence cannot be challenged?

We believed that nothing can replaced humans feeling and instincts. So yes, we agreed that Natural Intelligence cannot be challenged. Humans are unique, every single one of them have their own intelligence and ways of judgement. So is Natural Intelligence, it is unique and irreplaceable. With Natural Intelligence, only exist what we called Artificial Intelligence. Artificial Intelligence is created from countless of Natural Intelligence and Natural Intelligence changes according to each person and situation but not Artificial Intelligence. One might argue that not everyone is intelligent and have the intelligence quotient (IQ) as Albert Einstein, so how can one say he is intelligent? Natural intelligence in our opinions is a kind and one of its kinds of intelligence that only can be possessed by living creatures, where they can think for themselves on how to survive and make their decision after making their own analysis and not on a fit knowledge as Artificial Intelligence. It might be true that with Artificial Intelligence is intelligence but it is for all the time in any and every person and situation? We both strongly disagree because we are using our Natural Intelligence which are intelligence quotient (IQ) and emotional quotient (EQ) to complete this review instead of using Artificial Intelligence. Hence, there will be variations of answers which proven that Natural Intelligence cannot be challenged.

As conclusion, we agree that Natural Intelligence cannot be challenged and would like to add that nothing can replace Natural Intelligence. Natural Intelligence is unique and is different just as there are no identical humans although they are twins.


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