FYI: No spoilers here. :)
If you have friends who enjoy going to the movies, chances are you've heard a word-of-mouth review of James Cameron's Avatar. I had the chance to see it tonight on a date with my lovely wife, and we arrived a bit early to find the theater already crowded. So chances are that the grassroots commentary is making a difference.
The quick review? As movie watching goes, Avatar is worth seeing in the theater (and in 3-D) if you're going to see it. And it was visually stunning to the point where you forget you're watching computer generated people. There are some beautiful color contrasts and imaginative biology that help establish the alien culture, the technology is seamless, and the plot holds your attention.
But if you don't see the movie, it's not a crime. I've heard people say that you *must* see it, and it's honestly not at that level. There is a strong underlying message that many anti-George Bush types will connect with, but I've been more moved by that message in movies like Platoon and Born on the Fourth of July. This movie tells that same message differently, sort of "The-Matrix-meets-Pocahontas" (as my wife put it).
So again, if you do see it you'll appreciate it - and you'll definitely want to see it in 3-D.
And if you don't see it, life will go on, and you can use that money for something else you'll better connect with.