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#1 DWF

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Posted 10 March 2012 - 07:50 PM

The movie largely follows the first book wherein a former Confederate army captain is transported to Mars or as the locals call it Barsoom and gets caought up in their civil war.

Visually the movie is a treat the Tharks are nicely realized and the art direction is excellent. Lynn Collings is a real find as Princess Dejah Thoris I really liked her accent and she was quite a ttrractive as well. I liked the idea of the Therns and I hope the movie gets some of follow up to expand on the storyline. The movie might be a bit long but it's a well done movie IMO. And I loved the Jethro Gibbs styled head slap Tars Tarkis gave Carter upon entering the empty Helium. :D
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#2 G-man

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Posted 11 March 2012 - 12:12 PM

I have to agree that this is a worthy adaptation.

Yes, some liberties were taken, both in general plot and details, and the setting suitably streamlined for the story; but on the other hand, I thought the movie succeeded in capturing the spirit of Burrough's works.  

John Carter, instead of someone who "only comes alive in the midst of battle", and gung-ho adventurer, we're given a reluctant hero who just wishes to be left alone, but whose skills and abilities are just too handy for others to simply not try to recruit him to their cause.  I thought this was a nice twist, and gave us a far more sympathetic hero.

Dejah Thoris, is a far more active and engaged heroine, who is seeking to escape and overthrow the situation that circumstances of thrust her in.  And the pair of them make for a nice couple, with the underlying attraction being conveyed in looks even as we get the conflict of her recruiting efforts and his desire to simply return home.  All in all, the presentation of their relationship struck me as being believable within the context of the film.

The method of him arriving on Barsoom was also changed, but I think for the better, as it allowed them to introduce, and better incorporate, the shadowy villains, who are ... if not exactly controlling, then influencing events to their own benefit.

We had the Tharks, a wonderful, wonderful race, with the sympathetic Tars Tarkas and Sola, and the violent Tal Hajus and Sarkoja; and then there's Woola.  If there was any animal deserving to be made into a giant plush toy, it is him; the super-fast, cross between a toad and a bulldog, with the instincts of a sheepdog, who is devoted to our hero.

Then also, balancing out all the melodrama and action, is a thread of humor that is shot through the film.

Admittedly, there were moments when the movie did seem to drag a bit, suggesting that the pacing might have been a mite off, but on the otherhand, it is an enjoyable film that does seem to stand up upon reflection.

In short, go see it.  I look forward to everyone's reaction.

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#3 Godeskian

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Posted 11 March 2012 - 04:00 PM

I don't have a lot to add to your two reviews, except to say that I really think Taylor Kitsh sold the role of John Carter brilliantly. I've never read the books, but I know that they were part of what inspired Superman, plus I've no doubt countless other books, movies and tv-show concepts.

Very enjoyable movie.

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#4 ultraviolet

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Posted 12 March 2012 - 08:18 PM

I really enjoyed JOHN CARTER OF MARS.  It was a fun adventure romp.  I would love to see a sequel despite how badly Disney is marketing it.

#5 othkarwise

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 06:06 PM

I had never heard of John Carter of Mars before. My friend and I went to see it last night, she knowing the whole story because she had just read the books free on her (wait it's supposed to be mine) anyway, IPad2. ( so yesterday!)  I felt awful, right leg still in a brace, squirming in my seat, and yet I loved the hell out of this movie. We didn't see it in 3-D because we both have a problem with the glasses.  I'm seriously tempted to go back and see in 3-D anyway.  Sure hope they do a couple sequels.

oops  John Carter of Mars....not from

Edited by othkarwise, 15 March 2012 - 06:33 PM.


#6 othkarwise

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 11:33 AM

I don't think we will see a sequel. Disney is taking a 200 million loss on John Carter Of Mars. I don't understand why this movie did so poorly at the box office. ( even overseas ) I must truly be out of the loop. Why of course I am, I'm not in the 18-49 age bracket. They had to have this group big time to make money on JCOM.  Too bad. I would have loved to see that mess of a dog again. I love both the male and female leads, too. They are making me a grouchy old person.

There's links everywhere on this and it's posted everywhere. Going out the door and not posting a link. Sorry.

#7 G-man

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 11:57 AM

View Postothkarwise, on 20 March 2012 - 11:33 AM, said:

I don't think we will see a sequel. Disney is taking a 200 million loss on John Carter Of Mars. I don't understand why this movie did so poorly at the box office. ( even overseas ) I must truly be out of the loop. Why of course I am, I'm not in the 18-49 age bracket. They had to have this group big time to make money on JCOM.  Too bad. I would have loved to see that mess of a dog again. I love both the male and female leads, too. They are making me a grouchy old person.

There's links everywhere on this and it's posted everywhere. Going out the door and not posting a link. Sorry.

Yeah, I saw this myself.

Kinda disappointed, I must say.

I think that the critics not being receptive to it, kind of killed off interest of those on the bubble; and the matter isn't helped by the relative high cost of 3D screenings.  Consequently, to declare something a "flop" when its only been in the theatres for two weekends (thus predicting a miserable Jan-Mar quarter earnings) is kind of endemic of the whole instant gratification syndrome that has permeated our culture.

The only way the film is going to get an audience is to allow word of mouth to spread that the critics don't have a [blankety-blank] clue as to what they are watching, ans that this is a fun movie.  It may well prove that this film will become a cult classic.

Plus, Disney claims they spent $100M on marketing; but from where I sit, you couldn't prove it by me.  Personally, I think they should get a full accounting from their marketing department as to just how that money was spent.

/s/

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#8 The Tyrant

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 01:27 PM

Look on the bright side...having declared it a 'flop', Disney will probably fast-track the DVD/Blu-ray release just to recoup what they can from the home video market. I expect to see it in stores by summer.

Also, other box office 'flops' have gone on to be successes due to home video sales, even becoming cult classics...so you never know.

#9 ultraviolet

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 06:47 PM

The movie is making over twice the money overseas compared to North America.   I think Disney didn't know how to handle the movie since it was developed under the previous regime in control of the studio.   I hope the movie continues to make lots of money overseas and prove everybody wrong the movie isn't a flop sicn ei want to see a sequel.

#10 BklnScott

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 07:05 PM

I don't think there will be a sequel, as Disney announced to shareholders yesterday that it expects to take a $200 million write-off.  It's considered an historic flop by the industry -- the Ishtar of sci-fi movies.  http://www.deadline....or-john-carter/

It's made about 180 globally, but needs about 600 or more to turn a profit.  It's not going to get close to that.

I admit that I could't bring myself to go see it after the reviews.  I'll wait for the blu-ray.

Edited by BklnScott, 20 March 2012 - 07:09 PM.

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#11 Christopher

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 08:00 PM

The reviews I've read have generally been fairly positive.  I do feel it was horribly marketed.  John Carter was a ridiculously generic title.  If they didn't want to scare off teenage boys by using a title with "Princess" in it, why not call it John Carter, Warlord of Mars, or just Warlord of Mars?
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#12 BklnScott

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 08:59 PM

It's at 51% on rotten tomatoes.

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#13 DWF

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 09:28 PM

View PostBklnScott, on 20 March 2012 - 07:05 PM, said:

I don't think there will be a sequel, as Disney announced to shareholders yesterday that it expects to take a $200 million write-off.  It's considered an historic flop by the industry -- the Ishtar of sci-fi movies.  http://www.deadline....or-john-carter/

It's made about 180 globally, but needs about 600 or more to turn a profit.  It's not going to get close to that.

I admit that I could't bring myself to go see it after the reviews.  I'll wait for the blu-ray.

It's really not that big of a flop and it's alittle early to call in the movie's final numbers. And I think people have forgetten about Pluto Nash, that movie cost a reported $100 million and only made a mere $7 million at the box office. :blink:
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#14 BklnScott

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 09:57 PM

View PostDWF, on 20 March 2012 - 09:28 PM, said:

View PostBklnScott, on 20 March 2012 - 07:05 PM, said:

I don't think there will be a sequel, as Disney announced to shareholders yesterday that it expects to take a $200 million write-off.  It's considered an historic flop by the industry -- the Ishtar of sci-fi movies.  http://www.deadline....or-john-carter/

It's made about 180 globally, but needs about 600 or more to turn a profit.  It's not going to get close to that.

I admit that I could't bring myself to go see it after the reviews.  I'll wait for the blu-ray.

It's really not that big of a flop

It really is.  Per the New York Times:

Quote

Walt Disney Studios on Monday said it would take a write-down of about $200 million tied to the science-fiction megaflop "John Carter."

That loss is greater than some analysts had expected, and will cause the studio to record an operating loss of between $80 million and $120 million for its second quarter, which ends on March 31, Disney said. Disney's studio recorded an operating profit of $77 million in the second quarter of last year.

Analysts had pegged the "John Carter" write-down in the $100 million to $165 million range. The larger total reflects poor global reaction to the film after two weekends in theaters; sales total about $184 million, which must be split with theater owners. "John Carter," which was directed by Andrew Stanton and cost $350 million to make and market, will go down as one of the biggest flops in Hollywood history.

Bolding mine.

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and it's alittle early to call in the movie's final numbers.

It's not too early for Disney, which will claim a near half billion dollar loss on the movie.  

Quote

And I think people have forgetten about Pluto Nash, that movie cost a reported $100 million and only made a mere $7 million at the box office. :blink:

So Warner Brothers took a loss of something like a hundred million?  That would be about half the size of Disney's loss here.

BTW: Ishtar Lands on Mars  

Quote

In 1987, shortly before the release of “Ishtar,” Columbia Pictures realized the film was going to flop in catastrophic fashion. But rather than cut advertising spending to minimize the financial damage — as the studio’s top marketer advised — Columbia did the opposite, pouring even more money into ads.

The reason? The studio was desperate to stay on good terms with the two stars of “Ishtar,” Warren Beatty and Dustin Hoffman. “Ego trumps logic in Hollywood,” said Peter Sealey, who was Columbia’s marketing chief at the time.

Studios have repeatedly pledged in the 25 years since to modernize their clubby business practices, but the more Hollywood promises change, the deeper it seems to fall into its ruts — as evidenced by “John Carter,” a big-budget science fiction epic from Walt Disney Studios that opened Friday and flopped over the weekend. Disney spent lavishly (some say foolishly) on the movie in large part to appease one of its most important creative talents: Andrew Stanton, the Pixar-based director of “Finding Nemo” and “Wall-E.”

Disney's John Carter Is an Epic Failure  

Quote

The Walt Disney Company's “John Carter” is an epic failure that deserves to rank alongside “Ishtar” and “Heaven’s Gate” in the history of film flops.

So the comparison to Ishtar is pretty apt.

Edited by BklnScott, 20 March 2012 - 10:02 PM.

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#15 DWF

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 10:19 PM

View PostBklnScott, on 20 March 2012 - 09:57 PM, said:

View PostDWF, on 20 March 2012 - 09:28 PM, said:

View PostBklnScott, on 20 March 2012 - 07:05 PM, said:

I don't think there will be a sequel, as Disney announced to shareholders yesterday that it expects to take a $200 million write-off.  It's considered an historic flop by the industry -- the Ishtar of sci-fi movies.  http://www.deadline....or-john-carter/

It's made about 180 globally, but needs about 600 or more to turn a profit.  It's not going to get close to that.

I admit that I could't bring myself to go see it after the reviews.  I'll wait for the blu-ray.

It's really not that big of a flop

It really is.  Per the New York Times:

Quote

Walt Disney Studios on Monday said it would take a write-down of about $200 million tied to the science-fiction megaflop "John Carter."

That loss is greater than some analysts had expected, and will cause the studio to record an operating loss of between $80 million and $120 million for its second quarter, which ends on March 31, Disney said. Disney's studio recorded an operating profit of $77 million in the second quarter of last year.

Analysts had pegged the "John Carter" write-down in the $100 million to $165 million range. The larger total reflects poor global reaction to the film after two weekends in theaters; sales total about $184 million, which must be split with theater owners. "John Carter," which was directed by Andrew Stanton and cost $350 million to make and market, will go down as one of the biggest flops in Hollywood history.

Bolding mine.

Quote

and it's alittle early to call in the movie's final numbers.

It's not too early for Disney, which will claim a near half billion dollar loss on the movie.  

Quote

And I think people have forgetten about Pluto Nash, that movie cost a reported $100 million and only made a mere $7 million at the box office. :blink:

So Warner Brothers took a loss of something like a hundred million?  That would be about half the size of Disney's loss here.

BTW: Ishtar Lands on Mars  

Quote

In 1987, shortly before the release of “Ishtar,” Columbia Pictures realized the film was going to flop in catastrophic fashion. But rather than cut advertising spending to minimize the financial damage — as the studio’s top marketer advised — Columbia did the opposite, pouring even more money into ads.

The reason? The studio was desperate to stay on good terms with the two stars of “Ishtar,” Warren Beatty and Dustin Hoffman. “Ego trumps logic in Hollywood,” said Peter Sealey, who was Columbia’s marketing chief at the time.

Studios have repeatedly pledged in the 25 years since to modernize their clubby business practices, but the more Hollywood promises change, the deeper it seems to fall into its ruts — as evidenced by “John Carter,” a big-budget science fiction epic from Walt Disney Studios that opened Friday and flopped over the weekend. Disney spent lavishly (some say foolishly) on the movie in large part to appease one of its most important creative talents: Andrew Stanton, the Pixar-based director of “Finding Nemo” and “Wall-E.”

Disney's John Carter Is an Epic Failure  

Quote

The Walt Disney Company's “John Carter” is an epic failure that deserves to rank alongside “Ishtar” and “Heaven’s Gate” in the history of film flops.

So the comparison to Ishtar is pretty apt.

You're playing fast and loose with the facts, John Carter's budget wasn't $800 million dollars, if that's the budget plus the advertising costs it means they paid more for advertising than they did for the movie. You're also not taking into account Warner Brother's advertising costs on Pluto Nash. There were similar inflated costs on Superman Returns and strangely enough we're still getting anough costly Superman movie.

In the end, I think John Carter will break even with the actual budget of the movie, whatever money the lost above and beyond the movie's budget sounds like creative bookkeeping to me.
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#16 BklnScott

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 10:49 PM

Who said anything about 800 million, first of all?  Not me. . .

Quote

In the end, I think John Carter will break even with the actual budget of the movie, whatever money the lost above and beyond the movie's budget sounds like creative bookkeeping to me.

Well, that's not what "break even" means.  It doesn't mean when a movie's box office equals its reported budget.  It's been widely reported that the movie needs to make something like 700 million to turn a profit.  Stanton himself acknowledged this in, among other places, a profile in the New Yorker last summer.  This is not news.  The formula has always been that a movie needs to make somewhere between twice to three times what it cost to turn a profit, the exact amount depending on the deals with distributors, theater chains, back end participants, et al.  As the Times article above says.

If this movie breaks 350 million globally, it will be a miracle -- my guess is that it will struggle to crack 300 -- and at 350 it would still just be the halfway point to what it has to make in order to even begin to merit a sequel.  Again, as the New York Times put it: "megaflop" of Ishtar proportions.  

It's a shame, really.  I was pulling for the movie, even after the horrific marketing campaign.  But oh well.  It's supremely ironic that Stanton's animated movies tend to feature more three dimensional characters and better acting than his first stab at live action.  He made a FISH more human than John Carter.  Oy, the irony . . .

Edited by BklnScott, 20 March 2012 - 10:52 PM.

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#17 DWF

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 04:48 AM

View PostBklnScott, on 20 March 2012 - 10:49 PM, said:

Who said anything about 800 million, first of all?  Not me. . .

Quote

In the end, I think John Carter will break even with the actual budget of the movie, whatever money the lost above and beyond the movie's budget sounds like creative bookkeeping to me.

Well, that's not what "break even" means.  It doesn't mean when a movie's box office equals its reported budget.  It's been widely reported that the movie needs to make something like 700 million to turn a profit.  Stanton himself acknowledged this in, among other places, a profile in the New Yorker last summer.  This is not news.  The formula has always been that a movie needs to make somewhere between twice to three times what it cost to turn a profit, the exact amount depending on the deals with distributors, theater chains, back end participants, et al.  As the Times article above says.

If this movie breaks 350 million globally, it will be a miracle -- my guess is that it will struggle to crack 300 -- and at 350 it would still just be the halfway point to what it has to make in order to even begin to merit a sequel.  Again, as the New York Times put it: "megaflop" of Ishtar proportions.  

It's a shame, really.  I was pulling for the movie, even after the horrific marketing campaign.  But oh well.  It's supremely ironic that Stanton's animated movies tend to feature more three dimensional characters and better acting than his first stab at live action.  He made a FISH more human than John Carter.  Oy, the irony . . .

Even if the movie made $700 million it'd still be $100 million short accrding to them and the movie has made close to $180 million so I think $250-300 million is still a possibility.
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#18 Nonny

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 08:04 AM

Sigh, yet another underappreciated, badly marketed film to add to my Ishtar/Heaven's Gate collection.
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#19 BklnScott

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 08:24 AM

You know, I've never actually seen Ishtar but the fact of it hasnt ever lessened my hero worship of Elaine may.  And this film doesn't lessen my love for Stanton or chabon's work... Though maybe the former should stick to Pixar going forward (not that he'll have much of a choice).

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#20 G-man

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 09:23 AM

Actually, I'd recommend seeing the film (if only at a second run theater, or a bargain matinee 2-D screening), because the movie IS good.  The characters are fleshed out more here than in the books, the plot is solid (even to the extent of surviving post-viewing analysis), and everything works.

The reviewers ... I think they were just too distracted by the budget, and simply had no clue as to what they were watching.  

Personally, I think Disney just did a lousy job with their marketing campaign -- relying too much on a built-in audience and not trying to reach out to everyone else.  Of course, it may well be that tales originally told a century ago no longer have the mass appeal that they once did.

/s/

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Let me be considerate of my country, of my fellow citizens, and my associates in everything I say and do.
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