But it's still hard for me to be all sympathetic to an unreconstructed Confederate, even if his "journey" is to come back and fight for another cause, which isn't quite the same thing as accepting that the South lost the war and he is being asked to fight for what should be his United States. Somehow pulling a Han Solo to come back and fight for Helium, doesn't compensate for getting Powell killed even in the name of saving him.
And while the "noble savage" crap isn't up to the Avatar level, the heavy handed correlation between the Apache and the Thark, was kind of dicey.
Meanwhile, instead of rooting for John Carter, played by the very unfortunately named Taylor Kitsch, who despite his plausible Virginia accent is a fake American being played by a Canadian, I was pretty much rooting for the baddie being played by Dominic West, because he was clean-shaven and had a nifty British accent and was played by DOMINIC WEST, who played Hector in The Hour. Mind you, Hector was sort of a jerk, but I fell in love with him when I was writng my Yuletide fic. I went through the whole movie going, "Is that Hector" and was gratified to find I was right when I got home and checked IMDB.
I mean he wasn't so bad, and most of his really bad stuff was because he was being manipulated by the Therm anyway. If he wasn't planning on killing the Princess (on Therm orders) he'd be an awesome catch.
The effects were good, although in this day and age, one's mind is never far from the green screen. Willem Dafoe made a good giant green alien, although the whole plot with his daughter was also kind of distasteful, and not made terribly clear onscreen, as to WHY she was receiving so many punishments. Until hubby (who'd read the books, which I haven't) told me more of what was supposed to be going on, it just looked like very ugly torture porn.
I do understand that most of the more objectionable values dissonance stuff is probably inherent in the orignal material because of when Burroughs was writing. Carter's initial communication with Tars Tarkas had a lot of "You Tarzan, Me Jane" (which I also know never appeared in the original Tarzan, but anyway) about it.
Once the big battles got underway, I did get swept up in the majesty, effects, sounds, 3-D, IMAX, wheeeeeeee! aspect, but then it came back to the big resolution and I still wanted John to get back home so the Princess could be with the nice clean-shaven British guy and rule the planet and do research.
Give me Sab Than all the way.
PS-I did love the cute dog alien.