Disney has lifted the embargo, and the early reviews for "John Carter" are here.
Critics are split on whether the fantasy epic lives up to expectations, but the resounding response is that "John Carter" should be seen and discussed, an unfortunately rare quality in blockbusters recently.
Drew McWeeny at HitFix expressed amazement that a movie of this scope could still be made and took an overall positive stance saying, "The good news is that Andrew Stanton, one of the cornerstones of Pixar and the director of both 'Finding Nemo' and 'WALL-E,' has made a nimble jump to live-action, and much of his movie is imbued with a wild, thrilling pulp energy and a genuine sense of wonder. It is a charming science-fiction adventure that makes no apologies for what it is."
More specifically, many writers, including Badass Digest's Devin Faraci, singled out Lynn Collins's performance as the Martian princess Dejah Thoris. "Lynn Collins is magnificent as Martian princess Dejah Thoris. Rarely has a female character like this been seen in a boy-centric blockbuster; Dejah is a scientist as well as a princess, and a fierce warrior as well as a totally sexy bombshell." Faraci wrote. "Dejah Thoris is the best female character in science fiction/fantasy cinema since Ripley."
Harry Knowles, who at one point was involved in developing the stories for the screen, tweeted a short opinion saying, "JOHN CARTER is spectacular. The second that Edgar sits to begin reading Uncle Jack’s diary… pure magic till the end."
One of the common threads through both McWeeny's and Faraci's reviews was an issue with Taylor Kitsch during the opening sequence set in the time of the Civil War. Both write-ups describe Kitsch as effective overall, but too modern for the historical setting.
Critics and journalists have been seeing "John Carter" for weeks, but thanks to Disney's embargo, couldn't share their thoughts, something they all seemed eager to do. With the embargo set to expire only two days before the release date, writers would have to wait until the very last moment to share their recommendations, which generally seemed positive even before they could officially say.
A marketing campaign that left much to be desired and weeks of pleas from writers led to Disney abruptly lifting the embargo on reviews Thursday night (March 1).
"John Carter" opens in theaters March 9.
Are you looking forward to "John Carter"? Let us know what you think in the comments below and on Twitter!