Movie Review: John Carter

Directed by Andrew Stanton

This movie bombed at the box office. Might as well get that out of the way at the beginning. It was a financial disaster. That, however, has very little to do with the movie itself. Put aside the stupid naming and the bizarre advertising choices. Lets look at the movie itself.

The movie is actually remarkably faithful in tone to the book Princess of Mars even while changing some of the specifics. Instead of trying to update Edgar Rice Burroughs vision, it simply embraces it. And that's probably my favorite thing about it. The creatures and devices are fantastical and the scale of the cities is epic.

There's also plenty of action. Sword fights, flying, jumping. It's all there. And the plot, while simplistic (it's a blockbuster) is easy enough to follow.

It's the characters where things fall down. Outside of John Carter and Dejah Thoris have decent character arcs, but no one else gets developed at all.

Strangely John Carter seems both too long and too short at the same time. At 2 hours 20 minutes the story drags at times, yet some aspects feel like they were never properly fleshed out.

Personally I think I would have cut down the framing story to a minimum and used that time to build up the secondary characters a bit more.

Overall then it's a fun movie, but ultimately not very memorable. The best I can say for it is that it did inspire me to add the Barsoom series to my reading list.

Amazon.com: John Carter http://amzn.to/L90gDB

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14 thoughts on “Movie Review: John Carter

  1. May 28, 2012 at 19:11

    Yeah I agree basically with your view. I enjoyed it faults and all. I actually did review it for myself, hope you don't mind me linking : http://web.me.com/jzabel57/Site/Blog/Entries/2012/4/10_John_Carter_REVIEW.html

  2. May 28, 2012 at 19:13

    That's a shame, I wanted (and still want) to see this… didn't know it was that long, though. 0.o

  3. May 28, 2012 at 19:14

    I agree. It was a fun, faithful romp.

  4. May 28, 2012 at 19:15

    I have not seen the movie , mostly because of the way Hollywood normally destroys a good story. I have read all the Edgar Rice Burroughs stories as a teenager and love them. I still enjoy reading them because they are so much fun. The thing I really enjoined about the books was the handling of the differnt "races" of Mars they where all treated the same till they proved themselves wrong. Even not all them where the same, some where good some where bad. It normally was the leaders that where bad and not the people.

  5. May 28, 2012 at 19:40

    I thought it was fun. My 6 and 4 year olds also enjoyed it.

  6. May 28, 2012 at 19:48

    I enjoyed it very much. Sometimes you have to ignore the critics reviews and take a chance. I think they could have sowed more of the parts that take place on earth.

  7. May 28, 2012 at 21:15

    My girls (12 & 14) and I enjoyed it, but you review is pretty much on the nose. The advertising was particularly useless.

  8. May 28, 2012 at 21:23

    We're definitely planning to watch this…hubby and bf were a bit put off by the negative reviews, but I think it looks pretty decent.

  9. May 28, 2012 at 21:30

    If nothing else, maybe it will make people want to read? (Hopeful English Prof.)

  10. May 28, 2012 at 21:33

    It did for me. But then I was always a sucker for the old Flash Gordon cliffhanger serials and stuff like that.

  11. May 28, 2012 at 21:35

    +Eoghann Irving Im big pulp fiction fan. I know simple stories but they are just plan fun to read

  12. May 28, 2012 at 21:40

    Good review – I think its pretty spot on from my take on the movie as well. It wasn't great, or horrible.. something in the middle.

  13. May 28, 2012 at 21:47

    +Amanda Rachelle Warren Am all ready a big reader, but this definitely made me and my girls want to pick up Princess of Mars and the rest.

  14. May 29, 2012 at 05:44

    I loved the movie. I'm planing on reading the book as soon as I have finished The Hobbit.

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