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"Leaves of Grass" and "Avatar"   -   International Oddities


Do "Leaves of Grass" and "Avatar" share "twins syndrome parallels" resulting in film release delays?  
by Bill Black

Could the re-scheduling of Ed Norton's Twins movie "Leaves of Grass" been influenced by James Cameron's Twins masterpiece "Avatar"? Was the industry talk of nominations for another impressive performance by the contemporary cult figure Ed Norton pushed into 2010 due to end of year movie release madness?

The two movies could not be more different in composition, yet the underpinnings of both are cunningly curious in their inherent themes - that of nature, God, societal stigmas, and our interior duality all played out amidst the subtle twins theme (as in Avatar) or not so subtle twins theme (Leaves of Grass).

Avatar, a futuristic parable with parallels to modern society and a flawed civilization will surely be the discussion of many coffee table debates for years to come. And Leaves of Grass, a story that primarily takes place in the mid-west on a crazy ride through the dis-associative world of two identical twin brothers (both played by Ed Norton) makes the twin brother connections in "Avatar" a most curious coincidence indeed.

Particularly if you consider the possibility that with a slight perceptual leap of faith the Avatar lead character (also an identical twin) parallels the twin theme in the Leaves of Grass movie, not directly but in such a subconscious manner that society's intrinsic current events and cyber-spiritual anomalies begin to surface. That is to say, despite the broad range of diversity between the two films one can certainly say the plane of story telling possibilities for the two flicks share a heavy consideration for the subjective yet pertinent themes of God, nature, duality, and the potential downfall of a society running on auto pilot unless the caveat of self introspection integrates itself into our every day lives.

The public's positive assimilation of certain prevalent themes subconsciously permeates each movie and therefore leaves little room for two shooting stars in the sky at the same time. In other words it looks like Leaves of Grass is delayed due to a simple case of movie release overload. In light of very receptive crowds who still cry out for more even if the multiplicity of script depth eludes the casual moviegoer, the ultimate judgment call for delay may prove to reveal a certain unintentional wisdom.

With too much of a good thing in theaters, that being the release of so many great film selections this past holiday season, it is feasible that moving the projected release date of Christmas day for "Leaves of Grass" forward was a wise move. The point being, so Holiday crowds could take a breath, and prepare to take in the Cerebral Cinema work of Tim Blake Nelson's (Director of Leaves of Grass) latest cinema surprise without as much static from the other star studded films that compete in the big end of year film crunch.

Even though Ed Norton's much anticipated roll in "Leaves of Grass" (joined by such film greats as Keri Russell, Richard Dreyfus and Susan Sarandon) was met with praise by movie goers and critics alike at the Toronto Film Festival, the awaited release date of Christmas Day left many Norton fans waiting outside the theater wondering where the movie had gone to.

So having chatted with James Cameron years ago about movie making and being impressed with his depth and sincerity, and having worked with the staff of Leaves of Grass through International Oddities who provided all the Legal Buds used in the movie, let me connect a dot. Entertainment in cinema makes the financial world go around, but when you can integrate seeds of thought that cause the casual observer to ponder new paradigms in an open ended manner with deep rooted themes (like twins, nature, belief structures, nature as divine, etc.) you make people potentially a little happier while simultaneously changing their outlook on life for the better in years to come, even if they honestly believed they only came for the popcorn and an exorbitantly overpriced hot dog. So to patiently comply with industries delay for the most optimal release schedule of "Leaves of Grass" wait we shall. For in this case based on initial reviews of Leaves of Grass good things do indeed come to those who wait.

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