Jump to content
Wien

Ghosts of Mars (2001)

Recommended Posts

John Carpenter. You can say that he is very hit or miss with his films. When he hits, they are masterpieces. Timeless classics, even. But when they miss, they are enough to make Jesus hate his children's continued existance. So which category does Ghosts of Mars fall into? Watch the trailer and take a wild fucking guess.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3V_dFw4mxeI

 

Ice Cube. Jason Statham. Bad costumes. Worse sets. Even worse dialog.

Share this post


Link to post

I don't recall being as gutted over a movie as i was with this effort... God bless Carpenter he has made some amazing movies with no budget and a will to make the simple seem impressive but Ghost of Mars was a mess. the only carpenter DVD i don't own, any more.

 

The plot was ok (barely) but the effects, miniatures, props, dialgoue, costumes, makeup and acting just all sucked. Ice Cube was horrendous even for him. Not that he is in any way a good actor but i actually believed that Queen Latifa could have out acted him.

 

Henstridge, Statham, Grier & DuVall are all reasonable to good (in ascending order) actors but they look lost and bored with the story. I seem to recall Carpenter being really unhappy on and with the flick and after the muddled but really fun Vampires the same happy luck just didn't materialize.

 

The main villain looking like an outcast from Cradle of Filth really didn't help and made things even more silly.. the aliens should have stayed as deadly vapor.

Share this post


Link to post

I'm thirding this recommendation - there would be so much to talk about:

 

.Henstridge, Statham, Grier, and Cube

.Sub-Judge-Dredd world-building

.Obvious last-minute script rewrites

.Nonsensical "instant flashback" storytelling

.Ice Cube wears huge Mars camo pants

.The super-90s music

.Proto-Juggalo villains

.The insufferable mock-Jane-Lynch scientist

.The leader of the Martians is called "Big Daddy Mars" in the credits!!

 

...plus you could talk about John Carpenter's good movies too!

 

 

Also, it's on Netflix Instant. You guys should do it!

Share this post


Link to post

You know, while not his best film... It's still better than Escape From L.A. And actually, I admit to owning this. I bought it new on blu ray for $4.99

Share this post


Link to post

I second Escape from L.A. It has terrible mid-90s CGI and laughably overblown satire of show business and American conservatism. Oh, and hologram arrogance, a hang glider battle, a basketball game of death, and Pam Grier as a post-operative trans woman named Hershe.

 

It also has two of the hallmarks of a bad movie discussed in the Batman and Robin episode: characters surfing (to chase down Steve Buscemi in a car, no less) and popping a wheelie.

Share this post


Link to post

I'm glad someone already suggested Ghosts of Mars. Some buddies and I recently watched it and had a great time picking it apart, especially the psycho ghost-clown badguys and the unexplained future matriarchy government (what the heck?).

 

It's a great badmovie would definitely make an excellent podcast.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

We NEED to make Ghosts of Mars happen. Please don't make this once-in-a-decade film get overlooked. Ice Cube, Jason Statham, Natasha Henstridge, John Carpenter years after he lost touch with reality, space, horror, Pam Grier, an evil bad guy that yells gibberish at his followers, Clea Duvall, Letting a prisoner free because he wanted to get some food... Ghosts of Mars is an incredible, overlooked MASTERPIECE of bad movie-making. I created an account just to say this. PLEASE take a closer look at Ghosts of Mars. As Jason Mantzoukas might say, "It. Is. Literally. Amazing."

Share this post


Link to post

I just finished watching it. This is a ridiculously stupid and boring movie. SyFy quality for sure.

Share this post


Link to post

I think Escape from L.A. has more out-and-out insanity in it; but for that reason it's also much more fun to watch. Carpenter's Ghosts of Mars is just skull-bludgeoningly stupid, and built around a premise that, once you pay attention to it, just makes every minute of the movie worse than the previous one.

 

So the idea is - the evil spirits let loose from their tomb infect people and turn them into crazy sub-GWAR fan snarling creepos. And they stay in those bodies until those bodies die. Killing the bodies does nothing to harm the spirits, it just sets them free to find a new host.

 

So our heroes spend the ENTIRE movie gunning down hoards of these things and shouting catch phrases at each other about what badasses they are, when all they are doing is enabling the spread of the ghosts to the entire planet and participating in the gradual genocide of the whole human population. No search for a cure, no attempt to quarantine the infected or search for a means to block the spirits. Just PEW PEW PEW AW YEAH THIS IS GREAT WAIT WHY ARE THERE MORE OF THEM NOW? The heroes literally NEVER FIGURE THIS OUT.

Share this post


Link to post

I was actually surprised that most of the main cast lived to the near end of the movie, only for them to start dropping like flies to the monster horde, Statham included. It's like they forgot that bigger names had to die and just rushed it at the end while glossing over the fact that they had indeed been killed.

Share this post


Link to post

A top 5 guilty pleasure.

 

Even mediocre Carpenter is more watchable than 90% of films out there, but this one is tailor made for HDTGM.

 

This one may have turned out better if they let Carpenter cast Statham in the lead role rather than Ice Cube. Also, Courtney Love dropped out at the last minute and was replaced by Henstridge.

 

The mind boggles at a Statham-Courtney Love film from John Carpenter.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

This is a bad bad movie but not in enjoyable way, it is irritating to watch so it doesnt have the same joy as say, Maximum Overdrive. Clearly no one involved gave a fuck about it.

 

It also has maybe the first flashback of a flashback within a flashback in movie history.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

This is a bad bad movie but not in enjoyable way, it is irritating to watch so it doesnt have the same joy as say, Maximum Overdrive. Clearly no one involved gave a fuck about it.

 

It also has maybe the first flashback of a flashback within a flashback in movie history.

 

YOU'RE A LOOSE CANNON COBRETTI!!!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

ghostsmars3.jpg

 

 

By the year 2025, the planet Mars, long inhabited by human settlers, has become the manifest destiny of an over-populated Earth. Nearly 640,000 people now live and work all over Mars, mining the planet for its abundant natural resources. But one of those mining operations has uncovered a deadly mother lode: a long dormant Martian civilization whose warriors are systematically taking over the bodies of human intruders.

 

[media='']https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3V_dFw4mxeI[/media]

Share this post


Link to post

Good pick. I only watched it for the first time recently, and I quite enjoyed myself. It's far from being a good John Carpenter movie, but as a piece of cheese it has ripened quite well over the past decade and a half.

Share this post


Link to post

Good pick. I only watched it for the first time recently, and I quite enjoyed myself. It's far from being a good John Carpenter movie, but as a piece of cheese it has ripened quite well over the past decade and a half.

 

I think since it has Jason Statham and Ice Cube it might be worthwhile for them to pick it.

Share this post


Link to post

Bumping this again as it was brought up during the Escape From LA podcast.

 

Far and away a low point for the mighty Carpenter, but also a very fun watch. Henstridge? Grier? Statham? Music by Anthrax? Overweight Ice Cube? What's not to love?

 

And it's not as depressing to watch as Village of the Damned, which is Carpenter's true nadir.

Share this post


Link to post

Good bump Abe!

 

I have to agree with Cobretti though, to me it's just an infuriating piece of garbage that is so annoying to watch.

I live in Europe and I gotta say, people sometimes are seriously saying they like this movie.

Not in a HDTGM Guilty Pleasure way. In a 'it's John Carpenter so it's good' way. Which makes me furious.

The new UK Label INDICATOR is even doing a Blu-ray Collector's Edition of the movie along with VAMPIRES, which is so much more fun that this shitty movie and ESPACE FROM L.A.

 

As you guys said, so much to talk about (the flashbacks within flashbacks - the awful CGI - the cast). I'll add that the music is absolute shit. The soundtrack sounds just like an Uwe Boll film. There are many 'Inside The Plague POV Shots' - so long and boring. And that 'I was flying in my hot-air balloon on Mars' throwaway is bonkers.

 

People have been complaining about handheld action since Bourne but this is the movie that tells you that shooting action on a tripod with basic over-the-shoulders shots can be just as horrendous. The action scenes are just so boring, so badly choreographed, it seriously makes me furious.

 

God damn you John.

Share this post


Link to post

Bump.

This is a bad movie masterpiece and the epitome of hdtgm movies, how it hasn’t already been done is a travesty.

Dispite it’s obvious shortcomings, of which there are many, it’s still a pretty fun movie to watch and make fun of. Plus it’s credited with making John Carpenter to leave Hollywood for good (turned out to be ten years) which at time probably wasn’t the worst idea. 

Share this post


Link to post
On 1/9/2019 at 11:26 AM, IRONicmerMAN said:

This has to be Carpenter's worst film, right?

I would vote for Village of the Damned as his worst.  It needs to be seen to be believed:  Kirstie Alley chain smoking, an embarrassed Christopher Reeve, Mark Hammil overacting and Crocodile Dundee's wife holding the whole thing together. The kids themselves are hilariously not scary.  It screams "contractual obligation".  I doubt Carpenter left his trailer on that one. Ghosts at least knows what it is: supremely cheesy fun. 

Share this post


Link to post
2 hours ago, AbeFroman said:

I would vote for Village of the Damned as his worst.  It needs to be seen to be believed:  Kirstie Alley chain smoking, an embarrassed Christopher Reeve, Mark Hammil overacting and Crocodile Dundee's wife holding the whole thing together. The kids themselves are hilariously not scary.  It screams "contractual obligation".  I doubt Carpenter left his trailer on that one. Ghosts at least knows what it is: supremely cheesy fun. 

I watched it recently.  It's hot garbage.  Luckily, these entries don't hurt my opinion of Carpenter's career.  He has enough good that I'll forgive the huge turds.

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×