News Ticker

TRAILER: John Carter of Mars (2012)

Behold: The first trailer for Edgar Rice Burroughs’ John Carter of Mars


[via /Film]

About John DeNardo (13013 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.

14 Comments on TRAILER: John Carter of Mars (2012)

  1. Mervius // July 14, 2011 at 1:25 pm //

    I’m excited about this. The Martian Tales of Edgar Rice Burroughs are what launched me into reading science fiction back in elementary school. I was hooked immediately. So it would be nice if this movie has the good sense to be awesome, for me. 

  2. For me it’s a combination of being stoked and scared. I’ve been a fan of these for years, and at one point I was doing a podcast reading of Princess of Mars (which I think you can still find at, but which I never finished…) I want Disney to get this right, and there’s a lot of little elements that they seem to be getting right (like the relationship between ERB and the protagonist – that looks and feels spot on). 

    And while there’s a part of me that will totally notice every discrepancy between the books and the movie, the fact that it’s an official Disney film means I probably will be able to take my daughter to see this. So I’m a little comforted by that as well.

  3. I’m in. Got a little worried when the Disney logo popped up, but it looks like it could be good.

  4. A Princess of Mars might be my favorite book. I’m keeping my fingers crossed, but so far looks acceptable.

  5. They got my attention. Didn’t show enough John Carterishy stuff for me to have a strong opinion yet, but I’ll be waiting. Won’t bother me if/how it departs from the source as long as they blow me away otherwise.



  6. Allow me to be the first to sound a negative note.

    I sense “chick-flickery” creeping in to what was a straight forward boys adventure tale.

    The flyer(s) bear absolutely no resemblance to Burrough’s Martian air ships.

    The green martians look like people wearing green martian costumes on their shoulders.

    Dejah Thoris is wearing WAY too much clothing.

    Disney did this to us once before, remember?  It was called The Black Hole.  And it sucked.

  7. TheAdlerian // July 15, 2011 at 1:56 pm //

    I’m hopeful, but I must agree with Steve.

    I loved the John Carter stories for the action, but I was also stunned by the interesting racial stuff.

    John actually makes great friends with the savage and ugly green martians. That as out of the box because I was used to “ugly equals evil” when I was a kid. Then, he gets them to be friends with the “humans” who lay eggs if I recall correctly.

    The humans were described as appearing like a mix of all the human races, which was unique because I expected them to be white people like in most SF. Burroughs seemed very influenced by French philosophy because Tarzan is clearly a version of Voltaire’s character Ingenuous and the humans of Barsoom are what the French imagined for the Caribbean islands which is a place where all the races merge into one, thus eliminating racism.

    From what I saw of the Thark, he was too pleasant looking instead of being a bug eyed monster, he looked like a dog. The ugliness should be a contrast to the friendship formed. Again, I hope they go into the fact that the Martians aren’t human, but that John loves them anyway.

    The stories struck me as super progressive, but lost, due to the age of the stories. So, I hope the message Burroughs was trying to send with the story isn’t lost. From all of the Tarzan movies I’ve seen they never send the message from the books which is that Tarzan is very smart and thinks society is a mess and he’s reduced to swinging around and jumping lions. So, I’m hoping, but not too hard.

  8. joshua Corning // July 15, 2011 at 7:30 pm //

    Should have adopted “The Night Land” instead.

  9. joshua Corning // July 15, 2011 at 7:40 pm //

    The stories struck me as super progressive


    In 1912 progressives were Jim Crow supporting racists.


    If Burroughs was writing a story about the moral case for racial equality in 1912 it was more likely he was a classical liberal Republican.


    From wiki:


    Burroughs was born on September 1, 1875, in Chicago (he later lived for many years in the neighboring suburb of Oak Park), the fourth son of a businessman and <b>Civil war veteran, Major George Tyler Burroughs</b> (1833–1913)


    In fact I can damn near guarantee that he was.

  10. TheAdlerian // July 15, 2011 at 9:00 pm //

    Hey Josh,

    Don’t be a retard.

    I was using the word as, the word, not as a political party.


  11. There’s a ton of new Burrough’s reprints at the bookstores now.

    Disney?  Does that mean Miley Cyrus is in this?


  12. I’ve never read ERB.  2 of the criticisms appear to be put authenticity above marketability.

    “Chick flickery”: Half your potential audience is female.  If the books were really written for boys of the teens through the ’40s, then an update to accomodate the current movie going public is a no-brainer.

    Deja Thoris costume: What does it add to put Lynn Collins in a thong that makes up for sending an unintended message about the nature of the movie?

    This trailer doesn’t make this an automatic must see, but it does suggest that it’s not just for brain dead action fans.

  13. John C. Wright // July 19, 2011 at 12:43 pm //

    By coincidence, I just started reading Princess of Mars to my twelve and eight year old boys as their bedstime story. I was much more impressed with this 1912 work of pulp adventure than I was when I read it at twelve: the ferocity of the Green Men of Mars, for example, is attributed to the fact that they raise all their eggs communally, like Spartans, and no Green Man knows human sympathy, love, or kindness because family life is forbidden to them.

    Let me also sound a warning note. I notice John Carter is being chased by US Cavalrymen, not by savage Apache warriors who just tortured and murder his fellow prospector Paxton. Now, this scene is only a glimpse, but I hope I am not seeing the dread shadowy hand of political correctness falling across this perfectly innocent boy’s adventure tale.

    I also raised an eyebrow when I saw that the title is not JOHN CARTER OF MARS, A MARTIAN WARLORD UNDER THE MOONS OF MARS FIGHTING MARTIANS ON MARS, but was instead JOHN CARTER with no mention whatsoever of any planet, red or otherwise. How is anyone supposed to know this is an Edgar Rice Burroughs classic of ur-science fiction? Even many a fan of Tarzan is not going to recognise the finest swordsman of two worlds just by his name.

    On the other hand, Disney has recently given us perfectly charming and exciting action adventure tales in their Pirate movies, including their lastest, ON STRANGER TIDES, which I (at least) enjoyed very much. Can anyone these days actually do a tale of derring-do without being ironic or arch or unadventurous?

    The writers here are from Pixar, who gave us THE INCREDIBLES, which I think is one of the best action films, animated or live-action, in many a year. If anyone can do derring-do, maybe they can.

    Cross your fingers but keep your radium rifle powder dry. I have been waiting for this film my whole life. I hope they don’t wreck it.


Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: