My wife and I went to John Carter, expecting very little. In fact, Rhonda had absolutely no desire to see it, and I just wanted to see something because I start going crazy if I don't go to the movies every once in a while. So we went. Both of us came out of the theater surprised--surprised that the movie turned out to be so good.
I've come to despise Disney movies over the years, except for the ones Pixar makes. They have this need to include the stupidest, lamest things in their movies. I don't need to get into it now, but almost every Disney movie is this way. (First Pirates, not so much. The other two, full of dumb crap.) The Prince of Persia was a failure in my opinion because of its Disneyisms. John Carter does have a few... let's be honest about that. Disney is Disney, after all. But the stupidity is very light, and JC pleases on so many levels.
A lot of people are complaining that John Carter is just a mixture of other movies that have come before it. I chuckle when I read or hear people talk like that. People, John Carter came before Star Wars, Avatar, Stargate, and whatever other movie/book you want to claim it is stealing from. I've never read the books, but they were written nearly a hundred years ago. John Carter has been around for a very long time.
I don't know how the books are classified into genre, but I'd say the movie is very much a sword and planet adventure. Sword and planet is basically sword and sorcery, just knowingly on another world other than Earth... and there is technology that falls into science fiction. As a fantasy writer, who leans more to the sword and sorcery side of the aisle than epic, I planned on seeing John Carter since hearing about it. I hope that it makes its money back--it had a huge budget, so there is a big chance of this never happening. I think that it would be a shame. I'd love to see a sequel.
So if you're in to fantasy and science fiction, give John Carter a try. Even if you're not. You'll probably think the costuming is ridiculous, but google A Princess of Mars (the book the movie is based on) and you'll see the art associated with it. The costumes in the movie are very faithful to the imagined world in the books. I think it's awesome that Disney decided to stay so faithful to the source material. I'll probably never read the books, but I'll for sure be buying this when it comes out on dvd.
And remember, my wife liked it. That means it has to be good, right?