Vatican takes aim at ‘Avatar’

Roman Catholic newspaper hits out at film

ROME — “Avatar” may be popular with auds worldwide, but the Vatican is slamming James Cameron’s 3D sci-fi epic as “sentimental hokum.”

Following the Italo “Avatar” red carpet preem on Saturday in the Auditorium Conciliazione, a stone’s throw from St. Peter’s, Vatican daily L’Osservatore Romano gave it the thumbs down in a review which, among other things, faulted Cameron’s storytelling as “bland.”

By concentrating on the creation of Pandora’s fantasy world, he tells the story without any deeper exploration,” the Vatican paper said.

L’Osservatore also lamented that “there is plenty of stupefying, enchanting technology, but few genuine human emotions.”

Vatican Radio, which goes out worldwide, blasts “Avatar” for “winking at the pseudo-doctrines that have made ecology the religion of the millennium,” which may help explain the animosity.

In recent years Vatican media have increasingly commented on pop culture, often to warn the flock against pics such as “The Da Vinci Code,” perceived as posing a potential threat to Roman Catholic underpinnings.

However, last month L’Osservatore made a splash when it praised “The Simpsons” on its 20th anniversary, crediting the show for its “realistic and intelligent writing.”

“Avatar” will open in Italy on Friday on 800 screens.

More Film

  • ANT-MAN AND THE WASP

    Korea Box Office: ‘Ant-Man’ Stays Bigger Than ‘Skyscraper’

    ROME — “Avatar” may be popular with auds worldwide, but the Vatican is slamming James Cameron’s 3D sci-fi epic as “sentimental hokum.” Following the Italo “Avatar” red carpet preem on Saturday in the Auditorium Conciliazione, a stone’s throw from St. Peter’s, Vatican daily L’Osservatore Romano gave it the thumbs down in a review which, among […]

  • China Box Office: 'Dying' Holds off

    China Box Office: 'Dying to Survive' Scores $69 Million, Holds Off 'Hidden Man'

    ROME — “Avatar” may be popular with auds worldwide, but the Vatican is slamming James Cameron’s 3D sci-fi epic as “sentimental hokum.” Following the Italo “Avatar” red carpet preem on Saturday in the Auditorium Conciliazione, a stone’s throw from St. Peter’s, Vatican daily L’Osservatore Romano gave it the thumbs down in a review which, among […]

  • Elsie Fisher appears in I Think

    'Eighth Grade' Rules Indie Box Office With Top Screen Average of 2018

    ROME — “Avatar” may be popular with auds worldwide, but the Vatican is slamming James Cameron’s 3D sci-fi epic as “sentimental hokum.” Following the Italo “Avatar” red carpet preem on Saturday in the Auditorium Conciliazione, a stone’s throw from St. Peter’s, Vatican daily L’Osservatore Romano gave it the thumbs down in a review which, among […]

  • International Box Office: 'Hotel Transylvania 3'

    'Hotel Transylvania 3' Climbs Past 'Skyscraper' at International Box Office

    ROME — “Avatar” may be popular with auds worldwide, but the Vatican is slamming James Cameron’s 3D sci-fi epic as “sentimental hokum.” Following the Italo “Avatar” red carpet preem on Saturday in the Auditorium Conciliazione, a stone’s throw from St. Peter’s, Vatican daily L’Osservatore Romano gave it the thumbs down in a review which, among […]

  • Box Office: 'Skyscraper' Underperforms; 'Hotel Transylvania

    Box Office: 'Skyscraper' Gets Rocky Start as 'Hotel Transylvania 3' Checks In at No. 1

    ROME — “Avatar” may be popular with auds worldwide, but the Vatican is slamming James Cameron’s 3D sci-fi epic as “sentimental hokum.” Following the Italo “Avatar” red carpet preem on Saturday in the Auditorium Conciliazione, a stone’s throw from St. Peter’s, Vatican daily L’Osservatore Romano gave it the thumbs down in a review which, among […]

  • Mitzi Gaynor and Nancy Sinatra Sr.

    Nancy Sinatra Sr., Frank Sinatra's First Wife, Dies at 101

    ROME — “Avatar” may be popular with auds worldwide, but the Vatican is slamming James Cameron’s 3D sci-fi epic as “sentimental hokum.” Following the Italo “Avatar” red carpet preem on Saturday in the Auditorium Conciliazione, a stone’s throw from St. Peter’s, Vatican daily L’Osservatore Romano gave it the thumbs down in a review which, among […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content