Lots of chatter surrounding Avatar and its possible 'benevolent white guy has an Amazing Grace moment.' Ta-Nehisi Coates of The Atlantic brings up a Dances with Wolves parallel (after our own Teresa Wiltz had done the same a few days ago)

More interesting to me is the constant comparisons with Dances With Wolves. I need to go back and see this flick, but I remember liking it a lot and feeling like Kevin Costner was actually pretty respectful of the "natives" and their traditions. But it's been a long time and I could be wrong. One scene that sticks out for me happens toward the end. Kevin Costner is captured and on his way back to be tried. But the natives actually save him, instead of the other way around.

I haven't seen Avatar, so maybe the comparison is apt. But I never thought of Dances With Wolves as "white guy saves natives." I thought it was clear, from the start, that the native were not going to be saved.

The Buzz thought Avatar had was more like a Last Samurai/Dances with Wolves lovechild, but that's splitting hairs. What's your take on the depiction of the "natives"?