Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Lamenting over John Carter

Its been over a month since Disney's John Carter was released in theaters and subsequently crashed and burned upon impact. As far as common knowledge goes, the film was horrible and a giant disaster that Disney will be recovering from for quite some time (don't fret though, they should more than make up for it with the ungodly amount of money that The Avengers will bring in for them over the next month or 2). The problem is, John Carter was a GREAT film. It was fun, accessible to the whole family and was the type of film that Sci Fi fans normally love to watch. While I wont get into the debate of whether this was a better made film than Avatar, I will say as a fan I find it horrifying that Avatar made almost 3 BILLION dollars in sweet sweet box office cash while John Carter is struggling to break 300 MILLION worldwide (it may sound like alot but that 300 mil is pretty much what it cost Disney to make the film).

         There's many places one could point blame when looking at this movie. You could chalk it up to The Lorax stealing away many families that first opening weekend or you could blame today's ignorant movie going masses for writing this movie off as an Avatar clone (despite it being the film version of the book that Avatar stole from most), but for me the blame lays squarely on the films parent company, Disney. There's a large fact that everyone must accept about Disney. THEY HAVE NO IDEA HOW TO MARKET SCIENCE FICTION. Sorry I shouted, Im just still upset over all of this. It just drives me insane that a film with so much potential was absolutely wasted by a company that is soooo good at marketing everything else they own. The best example I can give you is the marketing itself. Here's Disney's huge Superbowl trailer for the for John Carter.

Looks kinda like a SYFY network movie of the week right? No explanation of the character, no idea of the plot. Just generic action music and quick shots of scenes we have no investment in. Now lets try a fan made trailer that at least attempts to engage the audience.

Seriously....how much better was that? How is it that a fan sitting at home figured out how to sell this movie but one of the largest movie studios with the biggest marketing machine in the world had no clue? Its just seriously sad that the story that influenced so many of our modern classics has been reduced to a giant failure and will more than likely never see the light of day again. This film could have brought the original books (which are free on most digital reading platforms due to them being so old ) back into popular culture and had the opportunity to influence an entire new generation of readers with its fantastic stories. But instead, we just get a big giant FAIL by Disney who will brush this off and never look back. I for one will do my best to share this film with friends as the years pass and hope it reaches some sort of cult status which is the least it deserves. Such a waste.  :-(

Ill see ya when I see ya folks,

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