I finally was watching the right channel when one of the DVD ads came on, so I did a quick cell phone video of it so we can discuss it here. Overall, although the short format (15 seconds) of DVD ads doesn’t allow for too much, it’s an improvement over the theatrical campaign. There are a couple of peculiar points about it, but neither are horribly negative, just a little strange.
And then this shot at the end —
When I captured a still frame of it, it looks like the flier is indeed a Barsoomian flier, but when I watch it in real time it doesn’t seem so and I don’t’ recognize it from the movie at all. It flies more like a standard space-ship zooming up and into orbit — not a Barsoomian flyer.
Those aren’t really complaints. I’m happy there are no white apes; the “Classic Sci-Fi” angle is what does seem to be emerging as the lasting heritage of the movie; and overall it feels fairly balanced.
Also, “I’m on Mars” as the starter is an interesting choice, and seems sort of an implicit acknowledgment that maybe dropping “of Mars” from the title wasn’t such a great idea after all. Or maybe I’m reading too much into it.
Also, the overall look of this — it’s gotten rid of the overwhelming barren landscape look, there’s only a very quick cut of the Warhoon attack and the shot at the end of John Carter with cracked earth under him to give that vibe — the rest of it feels richer and more inviting. I think that’s a good choice, overall — of course made easier by the fact that it’s just a 15 second spot.
One other curiosity — the cheated dialogue at the end where Matai Shang says “Nothing must stand in our way” and John Carter responds “I can”….
And finally …. they still seem so intent on shying away from the love story, which is so central the appeal.