|Taylor Kitsch, John Carter, Walt Disney Pictures, 2012.|
Garbling legend, literature, genre, and action-adventure cinema, the blockbuster adaptation of Edgar Rice Burroughs' classic sci-fi tales hits the screen with a sickening thud. Dissapointing, considering that this is top-notch animation helmer Andrew(Finding Nemo, Wall-E) Stanton's live-action debut.
Aside from his love for color and movement, Stanton does contribute about as much as he can to a picture that fails on so many levels. To begin with, the script, co-written by at least one great writer, novelist Michael Chabon. Any hint of his inflected spirit is a no, as the screenplay is quit obviously in tatters. In bringing that garbage to the big screen, Stanton & company have devised an eyesore; the sets and costumes are quite ugly and awkward. The leads are snooze-worthy; Taylor Kitsch is handsome but deadly dull; Lynn Collins might as well not be there, that's how weakly her prescence is felt.
When your villains (Mark Strong and Dominic West) attract more attention and sympathy than your protagonists, there's definitely something wrong here. The narrative structure is ineffective and odd, the action sequences frenzied and cut to ribbons. The overall feeling is one of a long, well-earned nap. A pastiche of western, science-fiction, and sword and sandals pictures could have been a cintender; recent amazements in this key include Priest and Cowboys & Aliens! The best thing about this dud is the bounding score by Michael Giacchino, unquestionably reminiscent of Goldsmith's Star Trek: The Motion Picture themes.