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Genki Sudo of Mars

December 2, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

I have only three things to say about the John Carter trailer.*

1. When I first heard the director of Finding Nemo was making a Barsoom movie, I thought it was possible that something new could come into this world. Apparently I was wrong: it looks like a Conan remake remake.

2. Led Zep? Really? Is that a witty quotation now, or are we supposed to have forgotten them?

3. “Where am I?” – I can help you there: Arizona. Somewhere around Crested Butte, I’d guess. I’ve never been to the American Southwest and even I know that. Who wants to get into a $10 bet that Vasquez Rocks features prominently at some point?

Really, I’m not usually this negative. And I know out here in OSRland there’s big love for anything that smells faintly like a Conan movie, and a Barsoom movie would be a gem beyond price. I get it. But this is not what I go to Barsoom for. My abiding memory of Princess of Mars is a sense of exploration, not epic LoTR battles – a sense of a really alien place, where all those lame colour-coded men weren’t lame if you scratched the surface, because they were actually entirely different things with their own concerns and worlds and ecologies (there, I said it). Not knowing what’s powering the air machines or how Barsoom works or if there’s some other power behind it all and wanting to find out. Apparently I was wrong about that too.

ETA: st_rev made me realise which film I really wanted to watch:  Genki Sudo of Mars.

Who among you does not know of Genki Sudo – martial arts gladiator, philosopher, calligrapher, musician, avant-garde formation dancer, local government advocate? Consider this my Joesky payment. And what, after all, is the message of John Carter – or Flash Gordon, or even Tarzan?


* Thanks OEF.

  1. January 3, 2012 at 4:52 pm

    I sort of shared you disappointed initially, and didn’t understand why everyone seemed to be raving. As I’ve seen longer trailers and more scenes, I’ve got a bit more positive toward it. I agree it still doesn’t seem quite alien enough.

    As to the fights and battles…well, there’s quite a bit of that in the Barsoom books, so that’s not wrong, necessarily, but I concur it makes the trailer feel different that the books.

  2. January 4, 2012 at 3:09 pm

    Uh. The horror…the horror….

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