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6 More Weeks Bad Movies

Netflix Streaming Roulette: Princess of Mars

Do you like gladiator movies, Billy?

What's that? You're tired of all those movies about Hercules, Goliath, and Maciste?

What about science fiction, Billy? How about movie adaptations of classic science fiction stories by The Asylum (the makers of Transmorphers)?

You do, but only if they feature Antonio Sabato, Jr, and Traci Lords in a modern updating of a classic Edgar Rice Burroughs tale?

Well, Billy, have I got just the thing for you in Princess of Mars!

John Carter (Antonio Sabato, Jr.) is a sniper for the United States military, stationed in Afghanistan. An op goes a bit awry, and John Carter finds himself on a gurney, nearly dead.

He has been backed up to a 16-GB USB drive, and he's going to be teleported to Mars. Not our Mars, of course, but "Mars 216" in the Alpha Centauri system. Hand waving explanations aside, and John Carter shows up naked (apparently his tattoos were backed up as well).

He is captured by some Thargs, which are tall and bestial (but were neither forewarned nor four-armed). They give him a towel, and test him in combat. It turns out that John Carter has some special powers because the -- well, it's never explained. He's exceptionally strong ... and he can jump incredibly far.

Yes, this is a movie where the hero has Superjump, and gets the most out of it.

John Carter fights some critters (Giant Flying Ants called "The Spiderlings"), captures The Princess of Mars (Traci Lords), and eventually helps her defeat Sarka, the would-be Afghan poppy smuggler who was sent over with John.

Sarka also has Superjump, and the climactic Boss Fight takes place inside an open-air multi-story Pumping Station (after Sarka has blown up the fusion reactor which powers the plot device ancient technology which keeps the atmosphere intact). There is a lot of sword fighting, and much jumping. Superjumping.

And at the very end, John Carter finds himself sucked back up the teleportation tube to Afghanistan, where he has survived the night, and is sent right back out on active duty. Isn't that an awesome ending, Billy? Billy?

...Billy, where are you going? I haven't told you yet about the low-angle shot where John Carter's wearing a towel and you can see his....


AAARGH I've seen this in the video stores and it pains me every time because I know somewhere Mr. Burroughs is rolling in his grave. Thank you for biting this terrible superjumping bullet. I'm going to cry now.
If it has Traci Lords, then it probably is eligible for "Let's up the rating to R." If not, then the role was a waste of her best talents.

Speaking of bad sci-fi movies, here's one I stumbled accross.

...4 ...3 ...2 ...1 ...morte

It's the one movie based on the German SF series Perry Rhodan and it also has the English title "Mission Stardust." Now, as for trying to get a copy...
I have yet to see a post-porn Traci Lords film where she had any nudity at all.

Mission Stardust sounds like it's worth looking for, at least. I'll bet Liberty Street Video would have had a copy....