This past weekend’s disappointing opening U.S. box office numbers for Disney’s $250 million John Carter doesn’t mean that movies set on Mars don’t appeal to the average movie-goer. It means that you have to make it known to the public that the movie is, in fact, set on Mars, and isn’t a biopic about Noah Wyle’s Dr. John Carter from ER, or a sequel to Prince of Persia. Taken together with news that this summer’s Total Recall remake will NOT be set on Mars, something needs to be done!
While online scuttlebutt hints that John Carter producers thought using the appellation “of Mars” would turn off female audiences (because everybody knows that chicks don’t dig sci-fi), a nice heaping spoonful of Mars would spice up any flick. Don’t believe it? Take a gander at these movies, reimagined on Mars!
Home Alone 2 … on Mars!
Even though his family decided to spend the holidays on a pleasure cruise to Saturn, young Kevin McCallister can’t stop thinking about Mars. When he gets separated from his family at the spaceport, a pair of assassins, Harry Lyme and Marv Merchants, try to take him out! While fleeing for his life, he hides in a cargo container and ends up shipping out to the red planet! After landing, Kevin is met by a beautiful prostitute named Melina, who brings him to the Martian rebels’ HQ. Unfortunately, Harry and Marv aren’t far behind! After laying siege to the rebel base and killing their mutant leader, Kuato, Marv wastes precious time turning on all the faucets in the compound before chasing after Kevin and Melina. Seeking refuge in some unguarded, ancient alien ruins, Kevin sets a series of ingenious booby traps which kill the bumbling assassins via vicious tar-and-feathering. Kevin then unlocks the hidden code in his mind and gives Mars a breathable atmosphere and blue skies! And then, just in time for Christmas, Kevin’s mom shows up and they share a profound moment.
Forrest Gump … on Mars!
When a simple-minded millionaire wanders into a cave in Arizona, he falls asleep and reawakens as: Forrest Gump of Mars! Newly gifted with great strength and speed due to the weaker gravity on Mars, Forrest moseys about and dispenses homespun wisdom to the warring tribes that he encounters. He somehow ends up being involved in every historic moment on Mars, marries a former cokehead princess and unites the Martian people through his naive kindness!
The Shawshank Redemption … on Mars!
When space-banker Andy Dufresne is wrongly convicted of his cheating wife’s murder, he’s sentenced to life at Shawshank Penal Colony on Mars. Surviving by helping the warden launder space-bucks from illegal mining of Unobtanium, he spends nearly 20 years at the prison, until the warden tries to hide new evidence of his innocence and make sure he can never spill the beans about the money laundering. Andy decides to time to peace out, and crawls out through a tunnel he’s been digging for years with a cobbled together sonic screwdriver. Unfortunately, he forgot to take into account the lack of breathable oxygen on the surface of Mars, and dies a terrible, agonizing death. Yeah, this one’s kind of a bummer.
Back to the Future … on Mars!
When teenager Marty McFly watches his mentor Doc Brown get atomized by terrorists from the Martian moon, Phobos, he has no choice but to hop into the time machine the crazy old scientist had built from an old DeLorean and pieces of a Martian Tripod. Thrown back in time to the War of the Worlds, Marty accidentally stops his parents from meeting AND jeopardizes humanity’s victory against the Martian invaders. Tracking down Doc Brown in the past, Marty has to avoid his mother’s romantic advances and play matchmaker for his parents before he ceases to exist. He also has to get past his meathead nemesis, Captain Biff Tannen, and tell General Strickland how to finally beat the Martians, once and for all … cough on them.
Photoshoppin’ by: Luis M. Navarro and Emily McGregor