What’s Wrong With Movies: John Carter (or Why Mars is Now America)

John Carter, a story about one man’s unbelievable journey from being a loose-cannon cavalryman on Earth to becoming the greatest hero of Mars.  Too be honest, seeing the movie in trailers, it seemed as if it was a bit of a wildcard.  It had all the makings of a good movie: original idea, ripped male protagonist with countless shirtless scenes, and an attractive female at his side.  It’s a tried and true Hollywood formula for flicks these days (Thor, Green Lantern, The Vow, etc).  Squeezing every ounce of sex appeal out of the characters squeezes dollars out of moviegoers.

Appropriate attire for a planet whose average temperature is 159 degrees Fahrenheit.


John Carter, the movie, is based on the first of an 11-volume novel series that was published over a span of 31 years by novelist Edgar Rice Burroughs.  The first book, A Princess of Mars, is the inspiration for the new film, and while I’m sure there isn’t enough interest in the series, I’d love to see Disney try to justify Hollywoodizing the remaining ten books.  I don’t even think Michael Bay could make “Thuvia, Maid of Mars” entertaining.    The movie follows John Carter, an American Cavalryman on the trail of incomparable treasure, who, on his pursuit, is magically transported to Mars.  A few things confuse me here.  Not the fact that our fearless hero is magically transported between 36 and 250 million km away in the blink of an eye.  Nope, it’s the fact that he can breath.  Mars’ atmosphere is almost entirely carbon dioxide.  Have you ever tried to breath straight CO2? You pass out and die.

So, let’s pretend that somehow he’s developed the ability to survive in the oxygen derived environment.  The gravity on Mars is around 38% of what it is here on our lovely planet.  If you weigh 200lbs on Earth, you’re 76lbs on Mars.  For comparison, if you weigh 200lbs on Earth, you’re only 33lbs on the moon.  Either way, if you weighed 5lbs you wouldn’t be able to jump like this guy.

Yeah.  Physics.

Overall, John Carter played to it’s strengths well.  It was properly paced, with well distributed action scenes, an original plot line and cutting edge computer animation.  Some of the action scenes got out of hand.  For example, there’s a heated battle where John takes on an entire race of aliens, and goes all Rambo.  If you watch the movie, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about.  I’d recommend it for anyone who enjoys sci-fi action flicks.  7/10

Stay Thirsty My Friends,

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