The Ninth Ray
“The Ninth Ray” could have been a title alternative to the movie “John Carter”, or at least this is how I remember the movie. And when I say title of the movie, I am referring to the recent film and not with the book where the movie was based. The first time I learned about the movie was when lead actor Taylor Kitsch, upon his guesting at the “Late Show With David Letterman” recounted his unpleasant experience with a customs officer, which was wrongly attributed to the Philippines.
The incident sparked my interest, and since then I anticipated the showing of the movie at our theater.
As for me, the movie is quite entertaining. I did not notice being on my seat for about 132 minutes. Reading it as a book though would be quite a different story. I am not sure if I will be interested (or if I have time). Nonetheless, since my primary purpose of watching the movie and on such genre is to be entertained, I have no problem if I find portions of the plot incoherent or absurd, unlike other critics who are raising their eyebrows on the storyline. Unless the movie was presented on pixelated graphics or on flickering CGI animation, I will agree that it is not worth watching (not at least on today’s digital animation standards), but hey the movie was big budgeted with the animations rendered smoothly.
It is not a good news though reading that this movie flopped at the box office. I had been reading several reasons and factors, I would like to enumerate my thoughts.
The budget of the movie is quite big (quarter a billion US dollars), therefore it is quite difficult to break even.
I think the movie title is bland and boring coupled with the Disney logo. I mean, the Disney logo is supposed to appeal the kids. Having “John Carter” as the movie title is synonymous to having an impact as “Cinderella” or “Tarzan” and not the “Star Wars” aura (‘Tarzan of the Apes’ of course was also one of the creations of Edgar Rice Burroughs, the same author of subject movie’, to which I admit as a kid enjoyed watching Tarzan).
Anyhow, I can not help but imagine that should the movie title had been “The Ninth Ray – a film by George Lucas”, the appeal, impact and viewership interest could have been different.