John Carter

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Entertainment: +2

Content: +2

Taylor Kitsch, Lynn Collins, Samantha Morton, Mark Strong, Ciaran Hinds, Dominic West, James Purefoy, Bryan Cranston, Polly Walker, Daryl Sabara, with Thomas Haden Church and Willem Dafoe. Action-Adventure. Directed by Andrew Stanton. Based on the story “A Princess of Mars” by Edgar Rice Burroughs.

FILM SYNOPSIS: Set on the mysterious and exotic planet of Barsoom (Mars), 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.

Edgar Rice Burroughs was born in Chicago and is best known for writing and creating Tarzan—still one of the most successful and iconic fictional creations of all time. John Carter is based on Burroughs’ first novel, A Princess of Mars.
Academy Award®–winning director/writer Andrew Stanton directed and co-wrote the screenplay for WALL•E, which earned the Academy Award® and Golden Globe Award® for Best Animated Feature of 2008. He was Oscar® nominated for the screenplay. He made his directorial debut with Finding Nemo, garnering an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay and winning the Oscar for Best Animated Feature Film of 2003. He was one of the four screenwriters to receive an Oscar nomination in 1996 for his contribution to Toy Story, and went on to receive credit as a screenwriter on subsequent Pixar films A Bug’s Life, Toy Story 2, Monsters, Inc., Finding Nemo and WALL•E.
The award-winning below-the-line team includes Production Designer Nathan Crowley, Oscar®- nominated for both Dark Knight and The Prestige, and Costume Designer Mayes Rubeo, whose work is showcased in Avatar and Apocalypto.
Award-winning composer Michael Giacchino has received numerous accolades for his work on previous Disney•Pixar films Up (Oscar® winner, Best Original Score; BAFTA winner, Best Music; Golden Globe® winner, Best Original Score for a Motion Picture; GRAMMY® Award winner, Best Score Soundtrack Album), Ratatouille (GRAMMY Award winner, Best Score Soundtrack Album; Annie Award winner, Best Music in an Animated Feature Production; Oscar nomination, Best Original Score) and The Incredibles (Annie Award winner, Best Music in an Animated Feature Production; GRAMMY nomination, Best Score Soundtrack Album).

PREVIEW REVEW: At first I thought the filmmaker was an out and out thief. There were elements of Conan the Barbarian, Cowboys and Aliens, Mad Max, Indiana Jones, Star Wars and Star Trek. Nothing seemed new. But then a colleague set me straight. Edgar Rice Burroughs wrote his John Carter books decades before any of those other adventures came on the scene, his John Carter being nearly as beloved as his other loin-clothed hero - Tarzan. Sadly, nothing here seems fresh, there is also another element lacking – enchantment. The material is overly familiar and is only moderately fun occasionally. Those involved have managed to miss out on any of the likeability found in the main characters that populated the aforementioned sci-fi actioneers.

It may be enjoyed by adolescents and those loyal to the books, but I doubt anyone will find this in the Star Wars league, either technically or aesthetically. As for the 3D, once again, it made the film murky and added nothing of a WOW factor.

Preview Reviewer: Phil Boatwright
Walt Disney Pictures

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: None

Obscene Language: A couple of mind expletives, but I caught no crude language.

Profanity: One profanity, during a western scene, a bartender utters God’s name, followed by accurse; I was hoping that this film would not profane God’s name, but the writer or director or actor just couldn’t get through an entire movie without such irreverence.

Violence: The violence is all Saturday morning matinee action adventure, ala Indiana Jones. There’s some green blood – you know from the Martians

Sex: None

Nudity: None, though the female lead does wear provocative clothing throughout.

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: None

Drugs: Brief drinking in a western barroom.

Other: We hear a man urinating.

Running Time: 132 minutes
Intended Audience: 10 and Up

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