Tuesday, March 13, 2012

#356. John Carter


I've got a review of John Carter up at Examiner.  It's one of those movies I was compelled to go see even though I had no particular interest in it, and found out there was good reason: not only is it a good movie, but an incredibly intellectually relevant one, too.

The last time that happened was Source Code.  I'm sensing a pattern.

I don't mention in the review, but another good reason to see John Carter is the fact that it seems like a direct extension of the Star Wars prequels, like the next logical step in the movie-going experience, especially if you're one of those older Star Wars fans who couldn't bring yourself to like them.  There are knowing nods to Avatar and Dune, but clearly it's Star Wars, and especially the prequels, that is the most relevant experience, beyond Source Code, The Adjustment Bureau, and the Matrix trilogy.  You'll notice that with the latter films, it becomes a lot harder to find an appreciative audience the more thought is put into the story.

It's one of those movies that kind of changes everything, makes you a fan of something that has long existed but you weren't really aware of, had no idea why you should appreciate it.  I guess I'm not surprised that it's underperforming at the box office, but as I suggest in the review, I hope it finds the audience it deserves, eventually.

I also want to mention how it also brings up an interesting parallel with Superman, with the Fortress of Solitude, an element of the Man of Steel's mythology that has had an inordinate presence in the movies as compared to its overall significance in the comics.  When will a writer figure out how to make it as important to Superman and Krypton's legacy as what can be seen in John Carter?

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