John Carter

2012 PG-13 2h 12m Blu-ray / DVD

John Carter

2012 PG-13 2h 12m Blu-ray / DVD
  • Overview
  • Details
One minute, Civil War veteran John Carter is evading Apaches in a deserted cave. The next, he's waking up on Mars -- a once-Earthlike planet that's devolved into chaos and civil war of a different sort -- and pitching in to help protect the planet.
Blu-ray DVD
Widescreen Anamorphic 2.40:1
English: Dolby Digital 5.1, French-Canadian: Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish (Neutral): Dolby Digital 5.1, English: DVS - Descriptive Video Service
Widescreen Anamorphic 2.40:1
English, French, Spanish (Neutral)
English: DTS 7.1 HD, French-Canadian: Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish (Neutral): Dolby Digital 5.1, English: DVS - Descriptive Video Service
PG-13 - Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. Parents are urged to be cautious. Some material may be inappropriate for pre-teenagers.
age 12+
Common Sense rating OK for kids 12+
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age 12+

Common Sense Note

Parents need to know that John Carter is a swashbuckling inter-planetary adventure based on Edgar Rice Burroughs' first book in the John Carter series, A Princess of Mars. There's an underlying romance to most of the story, but it's the movie's violence that might alarm parents of younger tweens. It's prevalent throughout the film and gets gory in a couple of scenes -- like when John (played by Taylor Kitsch) bursts through the body of a giant Martian monster he's just killed or decapitates a tyrannous warlord. Despite John Carter's war-like violence, none of the "good guys" die (although they're shot at, injured, and even tortured). Plus, there are a couple of strong female characters, and an overriding message that there's a particular honor to being selfless, even if it puts your own life in danger.

Sexual Content

Lots of longing looks, gazes, and touches between John Carter and Dejah Thoris, which eventually lead to a couple of kisses and the aftermath of a love scene (she's in bed with the sheet covering her all the way, and he's standing outside on a balcony). Other scenes show her in skimpy apparel.


Heavy sci-fi violence includes some frightening battle scenes, a weapon that turns anything or one in its path to dust, and a shape-changing villain who plans to destroy an entire planet. There's a Gladiator-style battle to the death in an arena where huge ape-like monsters are killed and another character is decapitated. Sola is branded and tortured and eventually sentenced to death by her own people. Tars Tarkas is injured and expected to die in the arena. John Carter is nearly killed several times. A horrifying flashback shows how John Carter's wife and child died in a fire in their home; he finds their charred remains. An early gun battle injures a U.S. officer. A long-dead character's skeleton is shown. A group of unhatched eggs is mercilessly crushed. All sorts of weapons -- from guns to spears, knives, and swords -- are used in battle.


Language includes "hell," "damn," "goddamn," and "stupid."

Social Behavior

The battle to save Barsoom rests on an unlikely alliance between Earth man John Carter, Martian princess Dejah Thoris, and a band of nomadic green "barbarians" called the Tharks. Through their eventual teamwork to fight a common enemy, they successfully stop the nefarious Therns from destroying Mars. By the end of the movie, characters who act selflessly are rewarded with honor and respect they deserve.


Not applicable

Drugs / Tobacco / Alcohol

Before he's transported to Mars, John Carter is shown drinking and enters a saloon where everyone has a drink in hand.

  • Age appropriate
  • Not an issue
  • Depends on your child and your family
  • Parents strongly cautioned
  • Not appropriate for kids of the age

This information for parents is provided by Common Sense Media, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving kids' media lives.

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