Most of what we’ve seen so far from James Cameron’s Avatar has had to do with the cat-like alien race, The Na’vi. Not really a surprise, considering that people’s main fascination with this film has been the pioneering digital effects work used to create the Na’vi, however, some of us have been wondering, “What about the humans’ technology?

It might come as a surprise if you didn’t catch some of the early concept art that leaked during Avatar‘s production, but yes! The movie DOES offer more than CGI “Cat-Smurfs.” In fact, there is a whole array of sci-fi tech that the invading human army uses to conquer the alien planet of Pandora – and now you can get a look at all that tech in a new three-minute featurette!

The name of this latest featurette is “Human Hardware” and appropriately so. The video features “the human side” of the cast, including Stephen Lang, who plays the imperial Col. Quaritch, Sigourney Weaver, who plays Dr. Grace Augustine and Giovanni Ribisi, who plays corporate swine Selfridge, along with some of Avatar‘s producers, and of course, Cameron himself. Sci-fi fans, you’ll love this video in particular, as it’s basically a step-by-step look at the kind of tech-toys that has made Cameron a revered name in the genre.

Enough talk, onto the video:

For a bigger, hi-res version, head over to Rotten Tomatoes.

I really do like this video, but can’t help but to feel a bit miffed that it took this long for the filmmakers to put it out. If anything, BEFORE we got into the whole hard-to-swallow blue alien business, Cameron could’ve been earning serious cred (and good press) if he just flaunted the things he’s already known to be a master of: big mech suits, futuristic aircraft and weaponry and the awesome visual effects that make it all look real. Everything about Avatar‘s ‘great 3D’ and ‘unprecedented CGI’ should’ve been introduced this way, IMHO. Might’ve avoided the whole “It’s going to suck” sentiment that’s now going around like the flu…

Some small gripes about the featurette: “Unobtainium”, the element that the human coporation is mining for on Pandora – our own Paul Young pointed out that’s the same name of the element that was used to construct the deep-drilling vessel in the 2003 film, The Core, and our own Vic Holtreman added that unobtainium is a general term for costly, unusual or downright imaginary material discussed in both science fact and science fiction circles. Second, the bladed bayonets on those mech suits look (to me, at least) like they were lifted right out of Gears of War. Isn’t Avatar supposed to be keeping things “original?” Because it’s starting to feel like a lot of borrowing is going on… I’m not saying, just saying…

What did you think of the “Human Hardware” of Avatar? Cooler than the alien aspect?

Avatar will be in theaters and IMAX on December 18, 2009.

Source: IGN via Rotten Tomatoes