Something popped in to my head a while back when I was watching Avatar. See the thing is that the Amp Suit from Avatar…


… looks just like the Power Loader from Aliens.

Then I realized that the ending of these films are EXACTLY the same. They feature a human in a human looking machine fighting an Alien. Only difference is that in Aliens, the Alien is the bad guy. In Avatar, the Alien is the good guy.

Now, Cameron has been quoted as saying he wrote Avatar before making Aliens. I wonder if he took the ending for Avatar and worked it into Aliens… and then recycled it nearly 25 years later.

Oh, and both films revolve around mining. I’m just saying… IS IT JUST ME???

32 Responses to “IS IT JUST ME?”

  1. Makes sense. I doubt Avatar was a fully fledged story back in the 1980s though. He had only about three months to write three screenplays – Terminator, Aliens, and Rambo 2 (I think in 1983) so if he had a drafted version of Avatar I’m not surprised he borrowed from it. By the time he got to the end of writing Aliens he was probably pushed for time!

    …but I like the link with Aliens and the reversed roles. Had another writer/director done it I would have been crying plagiarism!

  2. You’re spot-on dude! I’m not sure if you were reading my space back then, but when AVATAR hit theatres I said this…

    Essentially, AVATAR feels like a James Cameron Greatest Hits compilation. Take the effects of THE ABYSS, the action of ALIENS, the gunfights of T2 and the forbidden love of TITANIC. Cameron has taken his best tracks from those efforts and compiled them into one imaginative playlist…

  3. The power loader resemblance I nudged Yayo in the theater and mentioned something. They even showed it at the beginning like they did in Aliens in a way that you kind of knew it was going to play a pivotal role by the finale. I almost wrote a post on ALL the films that followed with mech warriors that looked nearly identical to the power loader, Matrix Revolutions is one that is a damn near copy (though it still kicks ass). If you want to really even stretch the influence, why not look at the Chicken Walkers in Return Of The Jedi. These could have easily influenced a ton of that kind of dig since then. Hell, even Voltron is a glorified Mech Warrior, but I agree the context it was used in is a mirror of Aliens, and good call on the finale.

    Hatter did kind of nail it though and I actually recall reading that before. It is kind of a greatest hits thing, and for that I love it. I just hope he has some new tricks up his sleeve for the sequels. After waiting ten years, I didn’t mind some of the repeat stories told in different ways, but now I want to be wowed.

  4. Avatar borrows liberally from a good few things. Basically, it’s a Photoshopped version of Dances with Wolves. Now with added ending-of-Aliens! 😉

  5. I noticed this when I first saw it. Yea, Cameron takes a lot from Aliens and makes it worse. I mean we’re rooting for the aliens? Seriously? I want the humans to win, dammit. I’m a human. Why am I rooting for the smurfs?

  6. Duh! Obviously, there was a lot of recycled stuff in Avatar ranging from entire scenes to James Horner soundtrack. I just saw this a second time (on DVD), really not that good a movie after the ooh and aaah from the 3D.

  7. Haha…good catch. Although fun and impressive to see in the theatre, this was Dances with Wolves in space. Cameron’s films are always weak script-wise…

  8. Really?
    You’re going to compare the films and NOT mention that Paul Reiser and Giovanni Ribisi’s characters are almost exactly the same?

  9. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Andrew Robinson, Andy Taylor. Andy Taylor said: Is it just me? […]

  10. the only real difference is that Avatar bites the big one

  11. I wanna point you to an article I wrote a while back. It’s not about the power loader, but it’s similar…

  12. Yeah, I think you’re just late to the party on this one, Kai. Sorry, bud, it’s true.

  13. Yeah man, I was thinking the same thing when I saw it. Almost everything in the movie can be traced back to other films/stories, and the mech is very similar to Aliens. It was one of the things I minded least about Avatar because for me in traditional sci-fi worlds, certain pre-defined things can co-exist between stories, such as mechs, pre-cogs, space travel, without being straight up plagiarism.

  14. Okay, I’ll respond to all these individual later (I’ve been working ALOT) but I thought this in the theater just never got around to writing it up.

  15. I totally thought the same thing. Self-copycat.

  16. Noticed that immediately and I ain’t complaining. Movies generally need more power loaders.

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