Movie Feature

John Carter: From Zero to Hero

By Cinema OnlineMovies - 06 March 2012 7:00 PM | Updated 9:33 AM

John Carter: From Zero to Hero

Based on Edgar Rice Burroughs' 1917 novel titled "A Princess of Mars", its lead John Carter, an Earthling and a former Captain of the American Civil War, ends up mysteriously on Mars.

Due to the weaker gravity of the red planet, Carter finds himself stronger and more agile than the natives, resulting in the alien races looking up to him as their heroic figure.

To live up to his newfound status, John then fights monstrous creatures and tries to vie for the attention of Dejah Thoris, the Princess of Helium—like all heroes who are suddenly plunged into a life full of adventure and challenges.

Check it out yourself this 8 March when "John Carter" is released in cinemas, but before that, here's some other zeroes who later make it heroes one way or another!   

Jake Sully (“Avatar”)

Jake Sully is a wheelchair bound ex-marine who enters a special program on the planet Pandora, where scientists use Na'vi-human hybrids called 'Avatars' to explore and obtain a valuable mineral for Earth's depleting sources.

In this undeniable Pocahontas rip-off with a dash of sci-fi, Sully regains the use of his legs through his Avatar, and blends in with the 10-foot tall blue skinned Na’vi to become one of them, learning their language and culture, and he falls in love with a female Na'vi named Neytiri.

However when the human’s true motives are revealed, Sully in all of his Na’vi glory, has to redeem himself and lead the alien clan to fight the bad guys (us) who are out to destroy the planet for their own greed.

Neo (“The Matrix”)


Computer programmer Thomas has a 9 to 5 job and his only entertainment in life is to secretly infiltrate systems as a hacker who goes by the alias 'Neo'. However when Neo gets 'unplugged', he finds out that reality is really a simulated Matrix designed by robotic machines who harvest the whole human population for energy.

The tech-wiz along with the other 'unplugged' humans are drawn into a rebellion against the machines, and finds out that he's part of a prophecy that really means: 'Neo' is an anagram for "One", as in the One who can end all the machine madness.

Now aware of his ‘real’ surroundings, Neo becomes the epitome of cool. Working an all-black trenchcoat as 'The One', Neo has telekinesis, flies at amazing speeds, jumps great distances and of course, stops bullets dead in their tracks.

The Pevensie kids (“Narnia”)


The “Narnia” movies which were based on the 1950 novels by J.R.R. Tolkien's ‘bestie’, C.S. Lewis, tells the story of four ordinary children, Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy Pevensie who are evacuated from London during World War II to live with their relative in an English countryside.

While they may only be normal children in reality, a game of hide-and-seek leads the kids to a wardrobe which brings them to the magical world of Narnia.

Apparently the kids are part of an ageing prophecy that says, “Two sons of Adam and two daughters of Eve, shall one day rule and destroy the evil White Witch who has cursed Narnia into eternal Winter Wonderland.”

By the end of it all, the kids succeed in their quest and are named Kings and Queens of Narnia.

Eric Draven (“The Crow”)


 Guitarist Eric Draven is just a normal everyday guy, but in a senseless act of crime, he and his fiancée gets murdered by thugs.

One year later, Draven awakens from his grave as The Crow, a vigilante hero who looks like a better looking Gene Simmons. Brought back as a member of the undead, Draven is the dark hero for vengeance while he sweeps the city clean of the thugs.

Although Draven is described as invulnerable, sadly the same can't be said for the actor playing him: Bruce Lee's only son Brandon Lee. Brandon died when a dummy bullet from one of the prop guns was accidently shot into his abdomen during the final weeks of shooting of “The Crow”.

Harry Potter (“Harry Potter series”)


 An unlikely bespectacled orphan boy living with his mean relatives in a non-magical world, finally gets his break when he is thrown into the wonderful world of witchcraft and wizardry.

How weird is it to find oneself suddenly capable of using magic with wands and playing sports with flying broomsticks while being quite the Mr. Popular amongst the hidden community of Wizards and Witches?

The 8 movies certainly takes us on a rollercoaster ride, as we witness ‘The Boy Who Lived’ totally transforming from a sad ordinary boy to The Chosen one destined to take down the Dark Wizard, Lord Voldemort and save the world. Ah, didn't we all wish we had owls flying in one day with our Hogwarts letters?

Roy Walker (“The Fall”)

Set in the 1920's, "The Fall" follows a story of a Los Angeles stuntman Roy Walker (Lee Pace) who befriends a young patient Alexandria as he fights depression from being bedridden and possibly paralysed.

While Walker may be a sob story in real life: Finding ways to end his life, the Jake Gyllenhaal doppelganger is a hero in the eyes of young Alexandria, whom he tells an epic tale of himself set in an alternate Universe. Spinning it with fantasy and his colourful conquests, Walker is as cool as a masked bandit hero can get.

Combine that with lush costumes juxtaposed against the background that’s shot in over 20 countries, thanks to director Tarsem Singh’s (“Immortals”) vision, Walker is certainly the most ‘out-there’ hero there is.

Sam Flynn (“Tron”)

As an orphaned major shareholder of a multimillion dollar software company, ENCOM International, 20-something Sam Flynn is a handsome young brat who takes little interest in his father's company apart from playing annual tricks on the board of directors.

When he discovers his father's secret chamber in an abandoned video arcade, he teleports himself into a virtual reality known as The Grid. In a world where there’s neon lights and house music by Daft Punk, it seems that life is just one big rave party for Sam.

But no, he finds his aged dad (Jeff Bridges) trapped within the system, and like any old man faced with loud music and bright lights; he wants to get out. Sam eventually gets his priorities right as he braves himself for a heroic quest to get papa Flynn out to reality aided by Quorra, played by Olivia Wilde.

Hal Jordan (“Green Lantern”)

A hunky aircraft test pilot who is also a part time womaniser may be already heroic to some. Truth is, Hal Jordan is just living life alone as it passes him by, without committing his hidden feelings to the beautiful Carol Ferris, his manager and fellow test pilot.

All that changed when he finds the Green Lantern ring that harnesses ones willpower for the good of the Universe.

Chosen to be part of the intergalactic police force called the Green Lantern Corps, Jordan goes on to fight an evil nemesis, Parallax, a demonic entity that harnesses fear.

Finally finding meaning in his life, Hal now bears the responsibility of protecting Earth as a Green Lantern and socialising with peculiar alien folk.

Anakin Skywalker (“Star Wars”)

Spending the first few years of his life as a slave boy on the desert planet Tatooine in a galaxy far far away, young Anakin Skywalker was just a 9-year-old nobody until he was discovered by Jedi Knight Qui Gon-Jinn.

Suspecting him to be the "Chosen One" who would bring balance to The Force, young Skywalker grows up under the guidance and training of Obi-Wan Kenobi, but eventually gets lured to the Dark Side of The Force, where he loses his legs, an arm and sadly his good looks in a lightsaber battle with Obi-Wan—leaving him as the ultimate villain of the "Star Wars" saga: Darth Vader.

Sure he was evil and ruthless, but it also gave him power unlike any other in The Force, making him a hero to some, an anti-hero to be precise.

Eventually, Darth Vader sees the light (literally with The Force lighting) thanks to his son Luke Skywalker and rescues him by sacrificing his own life, thus redeeming himself as a Jedi and fulfilling the prophecy as the Chosen One.

Dr. Alexander Hartdegen (“The Time Machine”)

Why would an inventor of a Time Machine capable of manipulating the very fabric of time and space be on this list you ask? Well, to put it simply, Dr.Alex Hartdegen (Guy Pearce) starts off as science geek.

Staying in a rented room, obsessed with his research when his girlfriend is killed, and dodging sneers from his fellow intellectuals who think he is joking, a depressed Hartdegen finally succeeds to travel back in time to the unfaithful night, but fails to save his lady love.

What happens when he goes berserk and travels all the way to the year 802, 701 (in a montage that is worthy of a "In The Year 2525" soundtrack) is what makes him a hero.

Faced with the Eloi, a new primitive human race, Alex then teaches them the basics of civilisation and snags a new lady in the form of Samantha Mumba. However, when Mumba gets taken away by deadly ape-like monsters called "Morlocks", its non-other than Hartdegen to the rescue.