|On Mars, they have a cooler version of a Corgi.|
Deep down, I believe that things will settle in the right place given enough time. So, I'm not the least bit worried that JOHN CARTER will find its audience because it's a diverting adventure that pours genuine imagination all over your stinking head. We just have to wait out the haters that have taken to bashing this film.
Yes, the premise of JOHN CARTER is utterly ridiculous- that a diverse group of beings live on Mars, or Barsoom as the locals call it, fighting ancient rivalries and draining their world of life in the process. And yet, the premise is what makes this movie so charming to me- that you could look up at a dot in the night's sky and imagine all kinds of heroism and exotic derring-do. You're not bound by what you know with this kind of film. Similar to how INGLORIOUS BASTERDS threw out your knowledge of World War II, JOHN CARTER offers the same kind of "no strings attached" storytelling. A human can walk on this Mars- he can actually walk and run rather well because of the difference in gravity. And his strength can make a human a formidable warrior in this environment.
Enter Captain John Carter, formerly of the Confederate Army. Drifting through the Arizona territory desperately searching for gold to heal the many losses he's suffered (his wife and child dead from the war), John Carter is a man without purpose. In stumbling upon a means to travel to Mars, Carter is given the chance to become a hero for a Martian princess who seeks to stop her planet's demise at the hands of some serious villainy. Naturally, John Carter and the princess, Dejah Thoris, hit it off.
|Hi, I'm from another planet.|
Carter also forms an alliance with a truly alien character-- Tars Tarkas, the leader of the Tharks. The Tharks are everything the Gungans should have been in STAR WARS: EPISODE I. And Tars ≠ Jar Jar. This alien has genuine charisma.
|There are no pod races in this film and this guy doesn't step in feces.|
JOHN CARTER is a completely satisfying adventure. The film provides unpretentious escapism; there is no need to analyze elements of the story or setting. This isn't science fiction, we are not supposed to know how this universe functions. JOHN CARTER is a movie where you root for the good guys and hope the girl gets her man. Luckily, the actors are all charming in their roles and the action is very easy to follow, unlike a lot of contemporary CG-driven films.
Take an afternoon off from Earth and join John Carter on Mars.