Thursday, February 23, 2012

"John Carter": Initial Thoughts

Though I've only started this blog a few days ago, I want to honor the request Disney has made to other media for a "full-review embargo" of John Carter.  Instead, here are a few initial thoughts:
  • I hope they'll reconsider the embargo, because early word has been that  John Carter is a failure, and this is completely wrong; John Carter is a fantastic, memorable movie, and the more people who can start spreading that word, the better
  • John Carter tells a crackerjack story that has genuine depth and surprising emotion, though for the completely uninitiated (like me), it can be a bit confusing at times
  • I'm fascinated to think what John Carter might have been like if Star Wars hadn't existed -- sometimes it leans a little too heavily on the visual style of those movies
  • Even at more than two hours, I wished it were a little longer and more slowly paced in some segments
  • Andrew Stanton directed Wall-E and Finding Nemo, but this is a better film than either of them
  • Not being much of a TV watcher, I didn't know who Taylor Kitsch was, but he does a terrific job in this movie (though his name is still kind of funny), as does his leading lady, Lynn Collins, also previously unknown to me; they're both tremendously engaging and have great on-screen chemistry
  • Having known nothing at all about the Edgar Rice Burroughs novels, I was not aware that the story is set during the Civil War, and I loved the way the story on Mars has parallels
  • There is so very, very much more to this story than two giant monsters chasing John Carter like the posters show; that would be a little like advertising The Wizard of Oz by focusing on the Winged Monkeys carrying Dorothy -- John Carter is rich, multi-faceted, fascinating and fulfilling.  
That's all I'll say for now, except to reiterate: John Carter is far from a failure.  I was unprepared to like it as much as I did.  I'm eager to see it again.


  1. there has only been one "bad" review, and that review was complaingn the movie had a complex story and was too long

    so in other words pointless

    every single person who has seen this has complimented it!

    early word is not failure, you are mistaking the constant rambling of trolls for early word

  2. John R. Music, you are right and I stand corrected. Now that people have actually seen the movie, early word is starting to trickle out and it is uniformly good, deservedly so. What I should have written and didn't is that, sight unseen, the earliest buzz was failure. The movie is not too long, and the plot is at least as complex as "Star Wars" or "The Wizard of Oz," which is hardly a criticism. This is a wonderful film, appropriate for all ages, with a heroic central character and, surprisingly, a heartfelt, engaging love story at its core, which you would never know from the way it is being advertised.

    1. the fans at the john carter files are trying to fix that

      they banded together and made a trailer, using material from only the trailers that makes teh film look good

      keep in mind, the trailer doesnt have anything new, it just switches it aroudn so it makes sense!