Thursday, March 15, 2012

John Carter Review

I was lucky enough to see a 3D advanced screening of John Carter last week courtesy of Disney. This movie is definitely one you should see in theaters. The special effects and scenery are incredible. It is also a movie that is worth watching in 3D. The effects were not "in your face" 3D effects, but rather it made the whole movie feel more real and like you were there. After watching a few trailers and seeing some pictures from the film, I had pretty high expectations going in.

It looks amazing, doesn't it? Those are just a few of many scenes from the movie. Let me give you the movie description before I go any farther:

"From Academy Award®–winning filmmaker Andrew Stanton comes “John Carter”—a sweeping action-adventure set on the mysterious and exotic planet of Barsoom (Mars). “John Carter” is based on a classic novel by Edgar Rice Burroughs, whose highly imaginative adventures served as inspiration for many filmmakers, both past and present. The film tells the story of war-weary, former military captain John Carter (Taylor Kitsch), who is inexplicably transported to Mars where he becomes reluctantly embroiled in a conflict of epic proportions amongst the inhabitants of the planet, including Tars Tarkas (Willem Dafoe) and the captivating Princess Dejah Thoris (Lynn Collins). In a world on the brink of collapse, Carter rediscovers his humanity when he realizes that the survival of Barsoom and its people rests in his hands."
 The movie had a great story line to it and kept my interest through all 137 minutes. I have not yet read the books, but I do know some of the history behind it. Edgar Rice Burroughs wrote the books that John Carter is based on almost 100 years ago! Can you imagine dreaming of something like this back then? They didn't have the internet or most modern inventions when this story was created. That is amazing. He also is the writer and creator of Tarzan. 

John Carter was a fantastic movie. While it is a sci-fi movie, it actually had a nice blend of humor and a love story twisted in. John Carter meets several amazing looking alien creatures throughout the film and ends up in the middle of a battle to save Barsoom (Mars) and the Woman that he realizes he loves.

I actually wanted to address some of the negative criticism that the movie has received. First of all, the name. "John Carter" was not the original name of the movie. It was "John Carter of Mars". Honestly, I don't think the name change really took anything from the movie. It may actually clear up some confusion because the 11th book in the series was titled "John Carter of Mars" and this movie is not about that book. From what I have been told it is a little of the first 3 books. I have not read them (yet! They are free as Kindle downloads!), so I can't officially verify this. Another complaint I have heard is that the fight scenes are too short. I thought that they were perfect with one exception (the challenge scene...I am not saying anymore because I hate spoilers). The movie is already 137 minutes (2 hours and 17 minutes). That is a pretty long movie. They had a lot to pack into this movie and couldn't afford to have 30 minute long fight scenes. Some scenes were longer than others, but I thought they did a great job overall.

If you are a parent and wondering if you should take your kid to see this, I would ask you one question. Does your child watch Star Wars? If so, they should be fine with this. Star Wars was actually based on this series. While there is some violence, most of it is not anything teenagers haven't seen. The girls are all wearing what amounts to bikini's the entire time, but there is no nudity or sex. You should also be warned that there is a flashback to a scene showing dead bodies that can be hard to take. I think most teens (and maybe some preteens) should be fine to watch this. Adults should definitely add this to their "must watch" list.

If you want to be truly entertained for a couple hours, this movie is definitely your best best. John Carter is in theaters now, so check it out!

PS> There is a really cool alien dog:

Disclaimer: I saw this movie for free in exchange for a review. I did not receive any other compensation, All opinions are 100% my own.

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