Dec 042011

I have to take a break from our usual subject matter and geek-the-fuck-out for a few minutes, because JOHN CARTER, the movie, is on the way.

Edgar Rice Burroughs is best known for being the creator of Tarzan, about whom he wrote 20+ books between 1912 and 1947. But Burroughs wrote other series as well, including 10 books set on Mars that featured the adventures of a hero named John Carter. This coming February will be the 100th anniversary of the novelization of the first book in the series, A Princess of Mars. (it was originally serialized  in a magazine called All-Star). In the Martian language used by Burroughs in his books, the name of Mars is Barsoom.

When I was much younger and even more geeky than I am now, I spent many happy hours on Barsoom, reading all the books in the Mars series more than once (I read all the Tarzan books, too, plus just about everything else Burroughs wrote). They told the story of a Civil War captain who inexplicably found himself transported to Mars, full of exotic civilizations, races of bizarre beings, and rampant conflict. So, I became childishly excited when I saw this morning that Disney has made a movie based on A Princess of Mars called JOHN CARTER.

It was directed by Academy-award winner Andrew Stanton (Wall-E) and starts Taylor Kitsch (Friday Night Lights) as Carter, Willem Dafoe as Tars Tarkas, and the delectable Lynn Collins (X-Men Origins: Wolverine) Princess Dejah Thoris. I really, really, really, really hope this movie is good. Really. Shit, I’ll be thrilled if it’s just decent.

It turns out that a teaser trailer was released in July, which I totally missed, but now there’s a new, longer one, which is finally what woke me the fuck up about this movie.  It looks pretty sweet. Check out both trailers after the jump, and I’ve also collected a shitload of stills from the movie and anothe rposter, too.

To find out more about this movie, the Disney web page about it is here and Apple has got this one also. The movie will be out on March 9.




  58 Responses to “BARSOOM”

  1. I spent much of this year on Barsoom.

    Jut as I spent much of last year on Arrakis.

    Really looking forward to this film. For once the changes they’ve made for the film adaptation seem logical and constructive.

    • It’s nice to know that these books are still being read. I haven’t gone back to them since I was a kid, but man, they had a huge impact on my imagination at the time. My plan is to re-read (again) “A Princess of Mars” right before the movie opens.

      • Got some really nice vintage paperback copies of the whole series, so made my way through them all one by one. Just great work.

        • I’ve still got the ancient set of paperbacks I collected when I first read them — and they were pretty ancient even then. I’m a bit afraid they will fall apart if I try to open them again now. Looks like A Princess of Mars (and maybe more in the series) is available as a free e-book download here:

  2. Im still lost on the definition of Thall.


  4. I’ll be honest, the fact that there’s a new Batman movie next has made it impossible for to care about anything else film related. But this looks interesting. I’ve never heard of Barsoom before…and now I feel inadequate.

    But still, all I can think about is the new Batman movie…and apparently Aronofsky is directing the new Wolverine movie which is based on probably the greatest comic miniseries ever.

  5. In the first teaser trailer that is fucking PETER GABRIEL covering THE ARCADE FIRE

    awesome non-metalness

  6. Will you be doing more of these movie related posts?
    I enjoyed this, although I couldn’t think of how this could be related to metal (aside from the Zepplin). I would totally be down with some geek stuff, but i guess you’d have a hard time justifying it being neither music nor metal.

  7. Just reminded me, I’m currently writing a song inspired by something in one of the Barsoom books.

    So currently we’ve taken our name from the Thomas Covenant series, inspiration in “Vanguard” from the Dark Tower series, the title and themes for “Black Math Ritual” from “Nymphomation” by Jeff Noon, and a further song on the next record is based on a short story by Alistair Reynolds.

    Books are metal.

    • Oh man, I loved the Thomas Covenant books! I’ve only read “Vurt” by Jeff Noon, but that was cool. And Alistair Reynolds is great, too. I just picked up his new novella, “Troika”. Actually, the UK sci-fi writers are the top of the heap these days. Other favorites: Iain Banks, Neal Asher, Richard Morgan, China Mieville, Jon Courtnay Grimwood, Ken MacLeod, Peter Hamilton.

      Geeky enough? Yes I believe so. Also metal.

      And it’s very cool you’re drawing song titles from this genre.

      • Next year brings the very last in the chronicles of Thomas Covenant… I really feel like a chapter of my life is ending. But now you understand where we took our name from at least!

        You have a copy of “Troika”? You lucky, lucky bastard. I’ve taken “Understanding Space And Time” as my inspiration for one of my new songs.

        Oh, and one of the first finished songs for the next record takes a fair bit from the philosophies espoused in the various “Dune” books.

        Jeff Noon and China Mieville are particularly good for me as Noon writes about Manchester (my hometown) and Mieville about London (which I also know reasonably well) – which helps make everything a little more real and interesting. Go check out “Nymphomation” by Jeff Noon.

  8. Maybe Ive seen too many Frazetta paintings, but this guy dosnt make me think of John Carter when I see him. Otherwise Im totally pumped for this movie

    • He looks too much like a male model. I’ve never seen Friday Night Lights, so I don’t know if he can act. I had an image of someone with a little more grit/gravitas on the surface. I guess among current “heartthrobs” (which I assume is a necessary quality when it comes to Hollywood marketing), I would have preferred someone like Sam Worthington or Chris Hemsworth (Thor), both of whom can act, too.

      • Dude isnt too bad as an actor..he played Gambit in the Wolverine movie a couple years ago, and seemed to do okay. Like you said though, hes seems a little too prettyboy/baby faced, and kinda scrawny looking. I could definitly see Chirs Hemsworth doing this and pulling it off

  9. This looks cool.

    I wish there was a movie or animated version of Brian Lumley’s Necroscope books.

  10. I think this is the first I’ve heard of this book series. Sounds interesting. Too bad I have trouble reading; not that I’m illiterate, it’s just that I have an extremely low attention span when reading books that I choose to read, and often-times, book I don’t choose to read, but have to read anyway (this is whn I’m thankful that I scored high enough on that placement test in the reading category that I don’t have to take a reading class in college).

    This looks cool, I’m not a big fan of live-action Disney movies from what I can tell, aside from Pirates of the Caribbean; but I’ll sure keep an eye out for this movie. I also like the idea of movie stuff being talked about on here, a movie review/discussion could be added in at the end of the That’s Music articles or something.

  11. Speaking of “Thats Metal But Its not Music” (even though the follow is music also) have any of you guys seen this?
    Its called “Vegan Black Metal Chef”

  12. If this site reviewed sci-fi and metal…I would probably implode with joy

  13. Well, now that we are talking about movies: if a certain movie is enthusiastically promoted by a kick-ass metal band, then it should be appropriate to the sites content? Am I right?!

    Anyways: Seediq Bale (

    Found about this through Chthonic’s facebook page. Military history, based on a true story = Looking forward!

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