As most movie goers are fully aware, box office returns are in no indication of how good a film is. If you don't believe me, see how much of a huge hit The Flintstones, Independence Day, and the Transformers trilogy were, and look at how terribly the Linklater Before Sunrise/Before Sunset films, Citizen Kane, and even The Wizard of Oz did in their initial releases.
The mystery surrounding the colossal flop of "John Carter" is an intriguing one, although some aren't surprised at all. Me I actually went to see the film with my friend Sam, who has replaced Quoc as my go to person for dragging me to movies of various quality. I've read two of the John Carter books many many years ago, so I was mildly excited to see how well this would translate to the big screen. Most critics panned this, and audiences never gave it a chance probably due to the fact they have no clue about the source material, nor would they even care. And really, most of the movie going public haven't the foggiest who Edgar Rice Burroughs even was. Plus the marketing was terrible, as having a title called John Carter tells you nothing about the plot except for the main character's name. If this were made in 1947, the title may have meant something. But it's 2012, and we've seen little to nothing from the franchise since the forties. Hell if they used the title A Princess from Mars it would've told the movie goers a more about the story than John Carter.
But I went to see it with an open mind, and found it to be a fun sci-fi romp that never took itself seriously. Was it Blade Runner or 2001: A Space Oddessy? Obviously not. What I watched was the character that influenced so much of modern American mythology, such as Star Wars, Superman, and Buck Rogers. It seemed like a great film for kids and their sci-fi geek parents, but no one seemed to like it, at all. It seemed like critics and the public wanted to hate this film for reasons I can't explain. Sometimes its fun to feel passion, even if it's negative, for a film that is mildly enjoyable.
It's a stretch to say I loved this film as it does have its flaws. Taylor Kitsch didn't have the charisma nor talent he displayed week after on the underrated "Friday Night Lights", nor is the plot that engrossing. The story is indeed simple, but it does give one a sense of urgency. If you're looking for a light hearted fun sci-fi film, you could do far worse, and let's be real, you certainly have. This movie is not as bad as you've heard, or even professesed. I enjoyed it, and you probably will too.
"OK, they botched the title. But not the movie itself." - Linda Cook