Friday, March 16, 2012

John Carter

John Carter
Directed by Andrew Stanton
Written by Andrew Stanton, Mark Andrews, and Michael Chabon
Based on A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs
Starring: Taylor Kitsch, Lynn Collins, Daryl Sabara, Willem Dafoe
Released in Theaters March 9, 2012
Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action

My Rating: ★★★★

Troubled Civil War veteran, John Carter (Taylor Kitsch), is on a search for riches when he is accidentally transported to Mars.  When he happens upon a nest of Tharks, a native alien race, he is taken captive because of his otherworldly abilities (actually, Mars’ gravity is different than Earth’s).  While in the midst of the twelve-foot, green aliens he meets the beautiful princess of Helium, Dejah Thoris (Lynn Collins). With the promise of helping him find his way back home to Earth, she convinces him to join the desperate fight for her city and her life.

I was actually pretty pleased with this film.  I saw a few negative reviews before, so I was half-expecting it to bomb.  I was happy that it did not—especially since we paid $18 per ticket to see it in IMAX 3D!  Granted, there was a lot more “story” to it instead of action.  I’m assuming some of the guys got bored with that side of it.  Personally, I think there was a great balance of humor, suspense, action, and romance. But, I enjoyed seeing the relationships of the characters play out along the way.  It reminded me very much of Star Wars, though not nearly as epic as those films. 

The cinematography was nice, especially with the alien creatures, flying ships, and action sequences.  I don’t generally watch 3D films because they give me a headache, but this one was subdued enough it didn’t bother me at all.  It wasn’t overwhelming with things flying out at your face.  It just felt like an enhanced experience, which was pleasant. 

I haven’t read the book it is based on, so I can’t compare it to that.  I’m not sure I will read the book, not because I’m not interested, but because I already have about 300 books on my to-read list and I’m afraid I’d never get to it! 

Overall, this was a great film for our kid-free weekend.  I probably wouldn’t have paid extra for IMAX 3D if I had to do it all over again.  I think it’s a great date film or evening in when it comes out on blu ray and DVD.  At least you get to look at pretty people for a couple hours J.