Tars Tarkas: [voice over] Mars. So you name it and think that you know it. The red planet, no air, no life. But you do not know Mars, for its true name is Barsoom. And it is not airless, nor is it dead, but it is dying. The city of Zodanga saw to that. Zodanga, the predator city. Moving, devouring, draining Barsoom of energy and life. Only the great city of Helium dared resist, stood strong, matched Zodanga airship for airship, holding fast for a thousand years, until one day the rulers of Zodanga became cornered in a sand storm and everything changed.
[during the battle between Helium and Zodanga, Sab Than’s ship gets attacked by a mysterious blue light in the sky, Sab Than notices three figures floating towards him, one of the men, Matai Shang, gives Sab Than a blue arm band which is a special weapon, Sab Than immediately uses this to kill Matai Shang but Shang quickly deflects the attack]
Matai Shang: Being a fool is a great luxury, Sab Than. Get up.
[Sab Than slowly gets up]
Sab Than: What are you?
Matai Shang: We serve the Goddess, and she has chosen you to receive this weapon. Do as we command and you will rule all of Barsoom, with none to defy you and nothing to stand in your way.
[on earth; Carter goes to a telegraph office and places a telegraph on the counter]
Telegraph Clerk: Ten words a minimum. That’s fifty cents, unless you want special delivery.
[Carter places a coin on the counter making the telegraph clerk look up and take the coin]
Telegraph Clerk: Special delivery it is. Name of sender?
John Carter: Carter. John Carter.
[camera pans back and we the man that was following Carter watching him from across the street; then we see the message on the telegraph; ‘Dear Ned. See me at once. John Carter.’]
[after receiving Carter’s telegraph, his nephew Edgar Rice Burroughs arrives at his estate to find out that Carter had died]
Dalton: His death came as a shock to all of us, he was a model of health and vigor. He just dropped dead in his study, not five minutes after sending word for me and the doctor. When I arrived he was already gone.
[Burroughs looks around at Carter’s office in awe as he sees all the strange and exotic findings from all over the world]
Dalton: The man never stopped digging. All over the world. No sooner he started digging one hole then he was off to Jaava or the Orkney Islands digging another. He said it was pure research, but it always seemed to me like he was looking for something. Well, God granting, he’s found it now.
[Burroughs picks up a photo of Carter and looks at it]
Dalton: Every inch a Cavalry man, to the very end.
Edgar Rice Burroughs: My mother always said that Jack never really came back from the war. That it was only his body that went West. He used to tell me the most wondrous stories.
[he turns to Dalton]
Edgar Rice Burroughs: I’d like to pay my respects.
[Dalton and Burroughs stand outside Carter’s tomb]
Dalton: You won’t find a keyhole, thing only opens from the inside. He insisted, no embalming, no open coffin, no funeral. Well, you don’t acquire the kind of wealth your uncle commanded by being like the rest of us, huh? Come, let’s go inside.
[Dalton turns and leave, but Burroughs hesitates, walks towards the tomb and places his hand on the door]
[back at Carter’s estate, Dalton reads from Carter’s will]
Dalton: And lastly, I hereby direct, that my estate shall be held in trust for twenty five years. The income to benefit my beloved nephew, Edgar Rice Burroughs. At the end of which term, the principle will revert to him, in full.
[Burroughs looks shocked]
Edgar Rice Burroughs: Of course, I always adored him, but it’s been so long. Why me?
Dalton: He never offered an explanation, I never asked him for one.
[Dalton passes an old looking journal to Burroughs]
Dalton: It was his private journal. He was most explicit that you, and only you, would read its contents. You might possibly find some kind of explanation in here. I’ll leave you now.
[Dalton stands and offers his hand to Burroughs]
Dalton: Again, my condolences.
[Dalton turns and leaves]
[Burroughs starts reading Carter’s journal]
John Carter: [voice over] My dear Edgar, I remember how I used to take you on my knee and tell you wild tales, which you always did me the great courtesy of believing. Now you are grown, time and space have parted us, but I reach out across that distance, to that same wide eyed boy and ask him to believe me once more. This wild tale begins thirteen years ago, in the Arizona Territory, between the Pinaleño Mountains and the backside of hell.
[the flashback story begins in 1868 with Carter entering the store in Fort Grant Outpost to ask for supplies]
Dex: No more, Carter.
John Carter: Is there a problem, Mr. Dix?
Dex: Yes, you’re a Goddamn loon! I took all your money, Carter. You’re tab’s a hundred dollars in arrears.
John Carter: I’ll pay. I saw a man, said he’d seen the cave, now…
Dex: No, stop. Not one more word about your cave with gold.
[one of the rowdy men in the store interrupts]
John Carter: Oh, now, now! Show some respect. It’s the evil spider, cave of gold!
the rowdy men laugh
Dex: You’re cut off, Carter. Now, get on home.
Rowdy #1: Now, I do believe, he done told you to get on out of here.
[Carter notices the knife on of the men]
John Carter: I’ll leave when these bags are full.
[suddenly Carter turns and knocks out both men]
[Carter points his gun at Dex’s face and shows him a nugget of gold]
John Carter: I found that two days ago, up by Benita. That ought to cover my tab and then some.
[Carter puts his supply list on the counter]
John Carter: Beans. The first item is beans.
[suddenly Carter hears a voice behind him]
Cavalryman: John Carter? You’re presence is requested up at the Forte, I suggest you come peacefully.
[Carter turns to slowly face the Cavalryman]
John Carter: Do you now?
[Carter goes to attack the Cavalryman but gets quickly knocked out by him]
[to Carter who’s sat on a chair with handcuffs on]
Powell: You are a difficult man to find. Captain John Carter, First Virginia Cavalry, Army of Northern Virginia, Confederate States of America. I’m Colonel Powell, welcome to the Seventh Cavalry of the United States…
[as Powell leans closer to Carter, Carter head-butts him and the soldiers quickly grab him to pull him away]
[after being attacked by Carter, Powell tries to continue his what he was saying earlier]
Powell: Excellent horseman, fine swordsman. Decorated six times, including Southern Cross of Honor. The Five Forks, the company in your command nearly turned the tie…
[suddenly Carter lunges at Powell again before the soldiers grab him again and throw him in jail]
[as Carter gets thrown into a jail cell]
Powell: In short, a born fighter. And in the eyes of Uncle Sam, a necessary man for the defense of the Arizona Territory.
John Carter: No.
Powell: Son, we are up to our chinstraps in Apaches.
John Carter: It ain’t my concern.
Powell: I believe it is your concern, Captain. Folks are being attacked in their own homes, slain!
John Carter: You started it, you finish it.
Powell: Oh, you’ve gone native, have you?
John Carter: Apaches can go to hell too. We’re nothing but a warring species and I want no part of it.
Powell: You’re a Cavalryman, that makes you valuable to our country and our cause.
John Carter: Colonel Powell, sir. Whatever it is you suppose I owe you, or country, or any other beloved cause, I have already paid. I have paid it in full… Sir.
we see that Carter has a wedding ring on his finger]
John Carter: So let me tell you what I will do. I’ll break me out of this cell, I will claim my gold and get filthy rich. Rich enough to buy your flat, righteous, blue behind, just so I can kick it all day long.
[through the cell bars, Powell punches Carter in the stomach]
Powell: Captain, I’m finding it difficult to reconcile the man on this piece of paper with the one I’m looking at. Now, I suggest you find a horse and sense to accept my offer before I give in to my better judgment.
[Powell turns to leave]
Powell: Private, the man stays in the bull pit until further notice.
[after Carter escapes with the guards in his pursuit and then getting attacked by Indians, Powell gets shot and Carter helps Powell escape]
Powell: I thought you didn’t care!
John Carter: I don’t!
[in an ensuing chase, Carter and Powell find themselves in the Spider’s Cave]
Powell: This place here ain’t Apache.
John Carter: It sure ain’t.
[as Carter looks around the cave he notices large amounts of gold]
John Carter: Gold!
[at that moment a Thern appears in the cave]
Powell: Carter! Right behind you!
[Carter shoots the Thern, he then notices a blue light shining out of a medallion in the Thern’s hand]
Thern in Cave: [whispers] Barsoom. Barsoom…
John Carter: What?
Thern in Cave: Barsoom.
John Carter: Barsoom?
[as Carter holds the medallion he is then unknowingly transported to Barsoom]
[on Barsoom, Carter discovers due to his different bone density and planet’s low gravity, he’s able to jump high, after which he runs into the Tharks and their leader, Tars Tarkas]
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] Hello! Don’t run. Don’t run away.
[Carter hides behind some rocks not understanding anything Tarkas is saying]
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] Hello. Don’t run. Don’t run away.
[Tarkas slowly walks towards Carter and Carter comes out from behind the rocks]
John Carter: Alright. You’ve got me. I surrender
[Tarkas points to himself]
Tars Tarkas: Jeddak.
John Carter: Jeddak?
Tars Tarkas: Jeddak. Tars Tarkas.
John Carter: Tars Tarkas.
[Carter salutes as he introduces himself]
John Carter: Captain John Carter, Virginia.
Tars Tarkas: Vir…ginia. Virginia!
John Carter: No. My name is John Carter. I’m from Virginia.
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] Virginia. Jump as you did before.
[not understanding what Tarkas is saying Carter repeats the word for jump]
John Carter: Sak?
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] Jump, yes?
[Tarkas mimes the motion of jumping with his hands]
Tars Tarkas: Sak.
John Carter: Sak! Yes, sir.
[Carter salutes and jumps and as he lands he grabs the weapon that Tarkas had thrown to the ground]
[shouting to his men as Carter points the weapon at Tarkas]
[as Tarkas lunges himself onto Carter, one of his soldiers shoots Carter in the butt, after which Tarkas takes him prisoner, straps him to one of their alien horse creatures, along with some Thark hatchlings]
John Carter: [shouting] What is this place? Where am I?
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] Virginia. It’s okay, just relax.
John Carter: Where’s my damn gold?
[one of Tarkas’ soldiers walks up to him to inform him about the eggs]
Thark Warrior: [subtitled] Eighteen have not yet hatched, Jeddak.
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] Then they are not our kind. Leave nothing for the white apes.
[Carter watches as Tarkas’ soldiers shoot the unhatched eggs]
John Carter: [shouting] Where on earth am I?!
[Dejah Thoris, princess of Helium, practices a speech]
Dejah Thoris: Barsoom, a world on the brink, for Zodanga’s new power threatens to destroy our city of Helium. And if Helium folds, so does Barsoom.
[she laughs to herself]
Dejah Thoris: Rubbish! Goddess, help me! I’m hopeless. I always come on too strong.
Tardos Mors: I know the terms set by Sab Than, what I want to know is can we afford to reject them. Admiral Kantos Kan.
Kantos Kan: The Eastern border is a wasteland. Sab Than has burned through our defenses, the boarder folk massacred. Our best troops and fleetest ships proven less than useless. And now comes word that our last remaining squadron has been lost.
Tardos Mors: Helium is lost. My people, I have failed them all.
Dejah Thoris: No, my Jeddak. You haven’t.
Kantos Kan: Forgive me, my lady, but you have not seen this weapon. It radiates the most intense…
[Dejah turns on a machine that projects the ninth ray, which has a blue light]
Kantos Kan: …blue light.
Dejah Thoris: When I read our reports on Sab Than’s weapon, I knew. Somehow that idiotic brute had discovered it first.
Tardos Mors: Discovered what?
Dejah Thoris: The ninth ray. Unlimited power. Sab Than only uses it for slaughter, but think of what Helium might accomplish with such power. Transform the deserts, restore the seas.
Tardos Mors: Is this what you saw, Kantos?
Kantos Kan: Starting to look very close.
Dejah Thoris: Give it time, it will work.
[one of the general’s, who’s wearing the same medallion as the Thern’s, touches the machine and it suddenly malfunctions]
Tardos Mors: Dejah, ever since you were a little girl, you’ve always met the expectations placed on you. It’s Sab’s terms.
Dejah Thoris: What are they?
Tardos Mors: He will spare Helium, if you accept his hand in marriage.
Dejah Thoris: No! He is a monster! You must refuse him!
Tardos Mors: He’s already on his way here.
Dejah Thoris: But all of my work! I just need a little more time!
Tardos Mors: Dejah.
Dejah Thoris: How can you…? You can’t just bow down to Zodanga!
Tardos Mors: A wedding will save the city!
Dejah Thoris: Perhaps! But it could lose you Barsoom!
Tardos Mors: Dejah!
Dejah Thoris: With no one to stop Zodanga it will be the beginning of the end!
Tardos Mors: We do not…we do not have the luxury.
[after finding out that Tardos has agreed that Dejah must marry Sab Than to spare Helium]
Dejah Thoris: [shouting] You are the Jeddak of Helium! You must find another way!
Tardos Mors: [shouting] There is no other way!
[Dejah looks away from Tardos]
Tardos Mors: If there were, I would risk anything to cease it. This is the chance we have been given. Perhaps it is the will of the Goddess.
Dejah Thoris: No. It is your will. When I was little and we would look up at the stars, and you would tell me of the heroes whose glory was written in the sky. How there was a star up there for me. Is this what you imagined would be written on it?
[before Tardos answers her Kantos enters with his men]
Kantos Kan: My Jeddak, Sab Than’s Corsair approaches the city. They signal for permission to land.
Tardos Mors: Grant it.
[Dejah turns away from Tardos in disappointment and sadness]
Tardos Mors: And let us prepare ourselves for a wedding.
[the general who caused the machine to malfunction listen to Tardos’ plans for a wedding, he transforms into a Thern and communicates their plans to Matai Shang]
Thern #1: I have destroyed the device, Matai Shang. She was on the verge of discovery.
Matai Shang: All is in place. They will consent to the wedding. Keep close watch over her. We don’t want anything to interfere with our next move.
[in the Tharks’ city, Carter is freed from his bonds and uses that moment to grab the medallion that brought him to Barsoom back but Tal Hajus pulls a knife at Carter’s throat]
Tal Hajus: [subtitled] Now we will kill it.
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] Back off, Tal Hajus.
Tal Hajus: [subtitled] You value this more than my judgment?
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] Step away.
Tal Hajus: [subtitled] I issue a challenge.
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] And who supports you challenge?
[Tal Hajus turns and addresses the other Thark’s]
Tal Hajus: [subtitled] Who will pledge their weapon to me?
[there’s silence as none of the Tharks are willing to pledge their weapon]
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] You are blind as the White Ape, Tal Hajus. You will not rule today.
Tal Hajus: [subtitled] Maybe not today.
[Tal Hajus walks away in anger]
[referring to Carter; addressing the other Tharks]
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] See the prize your Jeddak has found.
Voice in Crowd: [subtitled] What is it? A baby white ape?
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] No! It is a rare legendary creature. It’s called….it’s called, Virginia!
[the crowd starts to mumbling Virginia to Carter’s annoyance]
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] Show them, Virginia. Jump.
[Carter obstinately refuses to jump]
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] Jump!
[Tarkas walks towards Carter and takes him by the throat]
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] Stubborn. I will make you jump, Virginia.
[he throws Carter to the ground and addresses one of the female Tharks]
Tars Tarkas: [subtitled] Chain him up, Sola. Take him away and lock him with the other hatchlings.
[Sola bathes and shaves Carter and force feeds him a potion ‘the voice of Barsoom’ which allows him to understand their language]
[Carter breaks free from his chains and attempts to escape, but is followed by Woola, a dog-like lizard, when Carter comes upon the Tharks partying, Woola disrupts the party and a Thark warrior begins to beat him, but Carter jumps onto the warrior and punches him]
Tars Tarkas: You killed him with one blow.
John Carter: I…wait! I understood you.
[the other warriors attack Carter and knock him out]
Tars Tarkas: Get off him! How did this happen? Who is to blame?
[Sola walks forward and Tarkas, displeased by this, punishes Carter and Sola for allowing Carter to escape]
[Sab Than attacks a ship manned by Helium soldiers, Dejah, who fled her city rather than marry him, is somewhere onboard]
Matai Shang: If that’s how you plan to treat your future bride, it’s no wonder she ran from you. Dejah Thoris must live.
Navigator: In range, sir.
Matai Shang: Need only cripple the ship, across the radium drive is sufficient. Quick, clean and precise.
Spotter #2: Jeddak, shall we destroy her?
Sab Than: No. We need only cripple her. And bring us around.
[as Tarkas and Carter watch the mid-air battle as Sab Than ship chases Dejah’s ship]
Tars Tarkas: Zodanga, red flags. Helium, blue. Zodanga is winning the war, but I say, let red men kill red men until only Tharks remain.
John Carter: That don’t look like a fair fight.
Tars Tarkas: The Zodanga never fight fair.
[as Dejah tries to escape, she slips and is left clinging to the edge of her ship, as she loses her grip, Carter jumps through air to catch her]
John Carter: I beg your pardon. If you kindly just stand behind me, this might get dangerous.
[as they land he takes her sword and starts to fight with advancing Red Men, but he loses the sword, Dejah grabs it in mid-air and demonstrates her prowess in battle by killing the remaining Red Men]
John Carter: Or maybe I ought to get behind you.
Dejah Thoris: You let me know when it gets dangerous.
[to Carter after they have watched Carter jump onto Sab Than’s ships to fight]
Tars Tarkas: You are ugly, but you are beautiful. And you fight like a Thark!
Dejah Thoris: Jeddak of the Tharks, I am Dejah Thoris, regent of the Royal Helium Academy of Science. My research….
Tars Tarkas: You research as a spoil!
[Tarkas pushes Dejah towards Carter]
Tars Tarkas: Sola, tend to Virginia’s property.
Sola: Yes, my Jeddak.
Dejah Thoris: You know when Sab Than has concurred us he will turn his weapon upon you!
Tars Tarkas: I know that Zodanga has found a way to defeat you. And now you seek a mighty weapon of your own. But Virginia fights for us. He will fight for Torquas, in the south and in the north and he will be called, Dotar Sojat, my right arm!
[the Thark warriors all cheer]
John Carter: No! I don’t fight for anyone.
Tars Tarkas: Virginia, reject this honor and I cannot guarantee the safety of your red girl.
[Carter looks over at Dejah and reluctantly agrees to fight]
John Carter: I…am…Dotar Sojat.
[the Thark warriors cheer again]
[Dejah watches in sadness as the Tharks clear away the debris and dead bodies from the ships that had fallen in battle earlier]
John Carter: War’s a shameful thing.
Dejah Thoris: Not when a noble cause is taken by those who can make a difference. You made a difference today, Virginia.
John Carter: Okay. See, my name is John Carter. Virginia is where I’m from.
Dejah Thoris: Where did you learn to jump that way?
John Carter: I don’t know. How’d you learn to fly?
Dejah Thoris: Your ships cannot sail on light in Virginia?
John Carter: No, professor. See, our ships sail the seas. Endless water everywhere.
[Dejah stares at him then begins to walk around him]
Dejah Thoris: Skeleton structure normal…
John Carter: What are you doing?
[Dejah continues to study him]
Dejah Thoris: It must be the density of your bones.
[she spanks him]
Dejah Thoris: Jump for me!
Sola: Enough! There will be time for playfulness later!
Dejah Thoris: I want no playfulness from him. I want his help.
Dejah Thoris: Explain to me how you do it. If it’s a skill, teach it to Helium. Name your price.
John Carter: I’m not for hire. I’ve got a cave of gold of my own. Somewhere.
[Carter walks away from her]
Dejah Thoris: Only a madman would rave about the time of oceans!
John Carter: Is that your expert view? I’m mad?
Dejah Thoris: Or a liar.
Sola: She’s a good match for you, Dotar Sojat.
John Carter: Don’t call me that.
Dejah Thoris: There are no seas on the planet.
John Carter: You said planet…
[Dejah points with a stick at the solar system she drew on the ground]
Dejah Thoris: Sun. Then Rasoom.
John Carter: Mercury.
[Dejah points to the second planet]
Dejah Thoris: Then Cosoom.
John Carter: Venus.
[Carter then points to the third planet]
John Carter: Then Earth. Us.
Dejah Thoris: That is Jasoom.
[she points to the next planet]
Dejah Thoris: You are on Barsoom, John Carter.
John Carter: Mars. I’m on Mars.
[Carter looking shocked, gets up look at the sky and sees two moons]
John Carter: Good God, I’m on Mars.
Dejah Thoris: So your home is Jasoom? And you came on one of your sailing ships across millions of karads of empty space?
John Carter: No. Not like that.
Dejah Thoris: Go on. Shock me. How?
[Carter points at the Thern medallion that Tars Tarkas is wearing]
John Carter: That, brought me here.
Dejah Thoris: Oh. Well, that explains everything then.
John Carter: It does?
Dejah Thoris: Yes. You are a Thern. And you simply wish to return to your rightful place, isn’t that it?
John Carter: Yes.
Dejah Thoris: Then let’s sort this out right now. Come along!
[Dejah turns and begins to walk away and Carter follows her]
[Dejah takes Carter into the Thark temple, which is forbidden to non-Tharks]
Sola: Where are you going?
Dejah Thoris: To your temple.
Sola: No! No, you cannot enter here! It is forbidden! You are not Thark!
[Dejah and Carter enter so she follows them]
Sola: Dotar Sojat, it is forbidden. It is forbidden!
[Dejah points the light of her fire to the engraving on the temple’s wall]
Dejah Thoris: Well, you speak for the Goddess. What does she say?
John Carter: You called me a Thern. Is that what she is?
Sola: No! She is Issus. Therns are holy messengers of the goddess. In the time of oceans they walked among us, guiding us. We must not offend. Let us go!
[referring the carvings in the temple of the Tharks]
John Carter: There’s some kind of writing up there.
[suddenly Carter grabs Dejah and jumps up towards the carvings on the temple wall]
John Carter: Can you read it?
Dejah Thoris: It’s old scripture. I-I…
John Carter: What’s it mean?
Dejah Thoris: Don’t rush me.
[interpreting the carvings on the temple wall]
Dejah Thoris: “To those who seek the solace of eternity, may journey down the river through the sacred Gates of Iss and find everlasting peace in the bosom of Issus”.
John Carter: The Gates of Iss.
Dejah Thoris: What if I could take you there?
John Carter: What if I didn’t trust you?
Dejah Thoris: Then we’d be even. I can take you to the gates, to the answers that you seek. A way back to Jasoom.
John Carter: Earth.
Dejah Thoris: Earth. It’s the least I can do to repay you for getting us out of here. Assuming that you can.
John Carter: Deal.
[he holds his hand out in front of her, Dejah looks confused]
John Carter: Go on. Just shake it. It’s a sign of trust.
[Dejah takes his thumb and gives him a light shake]
John Carter: Good enough. Now all I need to do is get this medallion off Tars Tarkas.
Sola: Dotar Sojat?
[we see that Sarkoja has discovered them and is holding a weapon against Sola’s head]
Sola: I told you. It is forbidden.
[after discovering Carter, Dejah and Sola in the temple of Tharks, Sarkoja takes them to Tars Tarkas]
Tars Tarkas: What in the name of Issus is going on?
Sarkoja: Issus has been profaned. We found this one and the red wench plotting in the temple.
Tars Tarkas: In the temple? How did they get…?
Sarkoja: Sola led them there.
John Carter: Sola tried to stop us. I meant no disrespect to your Goddess, Tars. I’m just trying to get home.
Sarkoja: Your right arms were planning to rob you of the medallion and use it to commit greater blasphemy down the river Iss.
Tal Hajus: They must all die in the arena.
[Tarkas furious, grabs hold of Carter]
Tars Tarkas: How could you do this? I spared your life! I made you Dotar Sojat, yet my feelings mean nothing to you.
[Tarkas points to Sola]
Tars Tarkas: You knew, you knew she had no room for another mark. Now, Sola will die because of you.
John Carter: She’s your daughter, isn’t she?
Tars Tarkas: Who told you that?
John Carter: Call it a father’s intuition.
Tars Tarkas: A Thark has no parent with the horde.
John Carter: But how do you know?
Tars Tarkas: Her mother kept her egg and Sola is the last flicker of her ancient greatness.
John Carter: You can’t just stand here and let her be killed.
[Tarkas seemingly furious with Carter for breaking into their temple carries him to the tent]
Tars Tarkas: My right arms offend me. I will cut them off!
[Tarkas throws Carter to the ground and draws his sword]
Dejah Thoris: No!
[Tarkas suddenly places his hand against Carter’s mouth to quieten him]
Tars Tarkas: You must hurry. I mean to release you. I make one condition, you take Sola with you down the river Iss.
[Tarkas takes the medallion and gives it to Carter]
Sola: My Jeddak!
Tars Tarkas: I’d rather you died in the arms of a Goddess then as food for wild bants in the arena. Where you go, she goes.
John Carter: What’s gonna happen to you, Tars?
Tars Tarkas: Only the Tharks, his head in one hand and he may yet concur.
[Tal Hajus and Sarkoja are waiting outside the tent for Tarkas to kill Carter, Sola and Dejah]
Tal Hajus: Is it done, my Jeddak?
[Tal Hajus opens the tent and sees that they are all gone]
Tal Hajus: Tars Tarkas betrays us.
[as they travel through the barren Barsoom landscape]
John Carter: What happened to this place?
Dejah Thoris: Zodanga happened.
[as they hide from a flying ship, Carter watches it in amazement]
John Carter: Sailing on light.
Dejah Thoris: Still playing the madman?
John Carter: Or the liar.
Sab Than: Why pursue this wedding any longer? I’ve already won.
Matai Shang: Not yet. You must name past the horizon, Sab Than. To truly demoralize a nation requires a public spectacle on the grandest scale. Instating this wedding will ensure your rule goes unchallenged.
Sab Than: If you insist.
Matai Shang: If you cannot see the wisdom in that then we will find another who can.
[as they follow Dejah who is supposed to be taking them to the river Iss]
Sola: Dotar Sojat. Carter! I do not think she leads us to the Iss.
John Carter: Alright then, Sola. Just play along.
[Carter rides his lizard-horse creature closer to Dejah and suddenly grabs her rains]
John Carter: What do you think I’d do once I saw your city and not some river?
Dejah Thoris: What do you mean?
Sola: Cloras Anthorea, they should be at our backs by now. You lead us toward Helium!
Dejah Thoris: Once we reach there, you would see for yourself the virtue of our cause.
John Carter: Everyone thinks their cause is virtuous, professor.
[suddenly he grabs her stuff and throws her off her lizard-horse creature and he and Sola take off leaving her behind]
Dejah Thoris: What are you doing? No! John Carter! You can’t!
[as they pretend to leave her]
Sola: I like this plan better.
John Carter: Just wait. She’ll come around.
[as Carter pretends to leave Dejah behind]
Dejah Thoris: You mad fool! You’re not from Earth! There are no Gates of Iss! I only told you what you wanted to hear so you’d get us out! Stop! I can’t! I cannot marry him!
[Carter stops and looks back at her]
John Carter: Can’t marry who?
Dejah Thoris: The Zodanga Jeddak you fought. Sab Than. He offered a truce to my father in exchange for my hand.
John Carter: Your father?
Dejah Thoris: Tardos Mors.
Sola: The Jeddak of Helium. She is a princess.
John Carter: A princess of Mars. How about that? A princess who didn’t wanna get married, so she ran away.
Dejah Thoris: No.
John Carter: Is that all there is to this story?
[he turns to leave her again]
Dejah Thoris: No! I didn’t run away! I escaped!
John Carter: From what? His breath? So marry the guy and save your people.
Dejah Thoris: A life of oppression, that’s not living!
[as she runs to follow them Dejah falls, Carter suddenly turns back and offers to help her up]
Dejah Thoris: If you had the means to save others, would you not take any action possible to make it so?
John Carter: No good will come out of me fightin’ your war.
Dejah Thoris: I would lay down my life for Helium. Yes, I ran away. I was…afraid, weak. Maybe I should have married, but I so feared that it would somehow be the end of Barsoom. I tell you truly, John Carter of Earth, there are no Gates of Iss. They are not real.
John Carter: I’m sorry, princess. But this…
[he shows her the medallion that brought him to Barsoom]
John Carter: This is real. And so is my cave of gold.
[he offers his hand to Dejah to help her up which she reluctantly takes]
[referring to Carter, Dejah and Sola]
Voice of Thern #1: They have reached The Iss.
Matai Shang: It took them longer than I thought.
Voice of Thern #2: If they should reach the gates…
Voice of Thern #1: They can breach the sanctuary. And her knowledge of the ninth ray is already…
Matai Shang: As advanced as it will ever be. Patience, brothers. It is under my control. I’m already there.
[Matai Shang teleports himself to a rock formation overlooking the river]
[when they arrive at the river of Iss]
Sola: The Iss. Here pilgrims must leave behind all they have, all they know, never to return. May the Goddess find me worthy.
[as Carter is about to take a drink of the water from The Iss, he notices Sola trying to embark on the journey to the Gates of Iss alone, he leaps across the river towards her to stop her]
John Carter: Wait! What do you think you’re doing?
Sola: It is my way, Dotar Sojat, not yours. I must honor my Jeddak and redeem my unworthiness.
John Carter: You wanna honor your father? Then stay alive and help me!
Sola: My father?
John Carter: Sola.
Sola: Why would you say that?
John Carter: That’s what drives your compassions, the blood of your father, Tars Tarkas. And of all the Tharks, you’re the only one worthy of him. And your duty to your father demands that you see me through. Just help me find the Gates, then you can decide what honor requires.
Sola: Just through the Gates then.
[as the trio arrive the Gates of Iss which looks like a giant umbrella-like rock formation]
John Carter: Professor.
UDejah Thoris: Impossible! I’ve never seen this kind of structure before
John Carter: I wanna get a better look.
[suddenly Carter grabs Dejah and leaps to the top of the rock formation]
Dejah Thoris: Carter, your feet!
[the medallion Carter carries lights up blue and as they look down they notice the center of the rock begins to lower and a set of stairs emerges, the stairs lead into a cave where the walls form blue webbed material]
Dejah Thoris: This is not the work of Gods. These are machines. Your medallion
[Carter gives her the medallion and Dejah places it on the glowing spider carving on the cave ground]
John Carter: The spider.
[nine blue glowing rays suddenly appear out of the spider symbol]
Dejah Thoris: Nine. Nine rays. Nine! The ninth ray real! It can be harnessed, do you see? This entire structure runs on ninth ray isolates. The Iss is such power, and somehow Zodanga has it. The Therns, they must be real. And you, you are John Carter of Earth?
John Carter: Yes, ma’am.
Dejah Thoris: And the ships that sail on the sea, you’ve seen them?
[Carter nods his head]
Dejah Thoris: That must be a beautiful sight.
John Carter: It truly is.
[as Carter steps on the blue ray light suddenly the set of symbols connects and the solar system appears on the ground]
Dejah Thoris: It’s our solar system!
[Carter steps on the symbol of Earth and a set of symbols connects the planet to Barsoom]
John Carter: What’s it saying?
Dejah Thoris: I’m not sure.
John Carter: Okay. What do you think it says?
Dejah Thoris: It appears to be…a kind of technical diagram. Here is Barsoom, there is Jarsoom. This bit here, it’s like our symbol for a transcription. A copy, sent along these lines here, between the worlds. Like…
John Carter: A telegram. You’re saying I was telegraphed here. I’m a copy of myself.
Dejah Thoris: Possibly. Making these words here, the command for travel.
[referring to the symbols they’ve just discovered]
Dejah Thoris: I don’t like guessing. I need more information, I need charts, codesses.
[Carter looks at Dejah with suspicion]
John Carter: Right. And where might we find those?
Dejah Thoris: In the Hall of Science.
John Carter: And where’s that?
Dejah Thoris: Helium.
[Carter becomes angry, thinking that Dejah is still trying to convince him to go to Helium]
John Carter: Then quick! Let’s just head on turn on back to Helium.
[Carter grabs Dejah’s arm in anger]
John Carter: What do you take me for?
Dejah Thoris: I take you for a man who’s lost!
John Carter: I won’t be lost if you just tell me how to work this thing!
Dejah Thoris: I will! But everything I need to understand the medallion is in Helium. I’m trying to get you back to your cave of gold. Isn’t that what you want?
John Carter: Yes.
Dejah Thoris: No, I don’t believe you. We may have been born worlds apart, but I know you, John Carter. From the moment you caught me in the sky, I knew. I felt the heart of a man willing to lay down his life for others. A man willing to fight for a cause, here, on Barsoom.
[suddenly Carter kisses Dejah, but he has a flashback of his wife and daughter and pulls away from Dejah]
Dejah Thoris: Don’t you see? Carter, I fled to find another way. You are the other way.
[suddenly they hear Sola calling out to Carter, as they leave the cave they see a tribe of Tharks, led by Matai Shang, shooting at Sola]
[as they watch Carter, Dejah and Sola try to escape the Tharks attacking them]
Matai Shang: Pursue them to the Helium Plane, then overtake them and capture the red woman alive.
Tal Hajus: The one who jumps?
Matai Shang: Let’s see what he’s capable of.
[as they are pursued by the Thark tribe, Carter touches Dejah’s hand and has flashback to coming home after the war to find his home burned with his wife and his daughter inside]
Sola: Dotar Sojat!
Dejah Thoris: What are you doing?
John Carter: Sola, get her out of here.
[he jumps off the lizard-horse creature]
John Carter: Carter! I was too late once. I won’t be again.
[Sola grabs Dejah and flees off with her lizard-horse creature]
Dejah Thoris: No! No! No! No!
[Carter tries to force Woola to flee with the women, but Woola remains, as the Thark tribe reach him, Carter leaps in the air and onto the warriors, with each slash of his sword he flashbacks to burying his wife and daughter and placing his wife’s wedding ring on his hand, then the Tharks begin to overwhelm him and Carter disappears under a pile of Thark warriors]
[after Tardos Mors ship arrives, Tardos greets his daughter with joy and Dejah runs back to save Carter from under the pile of Thark warriors, Carter is alive but unconscious]
Dejah Thoris: Oh, thank Issus!
Tardos Mors: Who is he?
Dejah Thoris: His name is John Carter. He saved my life. He’s from Jarsoom.
Tardos Mors: Jarsoom?
[suddenly Sab Than appears out of Tardos’ ship]
Sab Than: Zodanga’s closer, he’ll have my personal physician.
[Dejah goes to attack Sab Than]
Dejah Thoris: He shot me out of the sky!
[Tardos grabs hold of Dejah to stop her attacking Sab Than]
Tardos Mors: My daughter, listen to me! Listen to me! Sab has admitted to everything. Now, he came to me, alone, without an escort. I could have had him prisoned, I could have had him killed, yet it was clear he only cared about your safety.
Sab Than: I feared you’d be tortured by the Tharks and condemned to die in their arena. I could not live with that on my conscience. I do have one, princess.
Dejah Thoris: Really? I thought you had it removed along with your…
Tardos Mors: Dejah!
Sab Than: She does not trust me, Jeddak. And why should she? There’s never been trust between Zodanga and Helium. Therefore, princess, I offer you this small, but sincere token of my good will.
[he takes out his sword, kneels in front of Dejah and offers her his sword]
Sab Than: My life.
[Dejah takes his sword and suddenly moves to strike Sab Than, but instead places the sword against his throat]
Sab Than: You hold the power, princess. The power of life, over me and over all Barsoom. With our two cities united, anything is possible. All you have to do is marry me.
[Carter awakens in a guarded cell in Zodanga]
John Carter: Is this Helium?
[suddenly Kantos Kan walks in the room]
Kantos Kan: No. Zodanga. Where the men are as limited as the menu, and the women are as hard as the beds.
Zodangan Guard: What’s your business here?
[referring to Carter]
Kantos Kan: He is my business. The Jarsoom needs to be taken to more secure accommodation.
Zodangan Guard: We’ve received no such orders.
Kantos Kan: Well, you’re receiving them now! Straight from the laughing lips of Sab Than himself.
[Kantos walks towards Carter]
Kantos Kan: I hear that you are incredibly dangerous.
[he whispers to Carter]
Kantos Kan: Take me hostage.
John Carter: What?
Kantos Kan: Take me hostage.
John Carter: Are you alright?
[as Carter appears confused by his request Kantos grabs his own sword, holds it to his neck, and grabs Carter’s arm to make it seem like the latter has taken him hostage]
Kantos Kan: The white imbecile! He takes my sword!
[they break out of cell]
[as they get away from the Zodangan guards]
John Carter: Right. Your turn.
Kantos Kan: My turn?
John Carter: Who are you?
Kantos Kan: My name is Kantos Khan. I sever Princess Dejah.
John Carter: Dejah?
Kantos Kan: Uh-huh. And from what she tells me, you can get us over…there.
[he points to Sab Than’s palace]
John Carter: She said I could make that?
Kantos Kan: We could always surrender.
[as they hear the Zodangan guards approaching them]
Kantos Kan: Is that what you do on Jarsoom? Huh?
[as the guards reach them, Carter quickly grabs hold of Kantos and leaps into the air and just goes just far enough to grab a stone ledge and tumble into Dejah’s bridal suite]
[after Carter and Kantos land in Dejah’s bridal suit]
Dejah Thoris: You are expected to bow in my presence, Captain Carter.
[Carter looks at Dejah, in her bridal gown and the servant women attending her; Kantos whispers to Carter]
Kantos Kan: Bow.
Dejah Thoris: Suppose that will do.
Kantos Kan: I fetched him, as you commanded.
Dejah Thoris: Thank you, Kantos.
[turning to the servant women]
Dejah Thoris: I wish to speak to Captain Carter alone.
Dejah Thoris: Keep watch outside.
[as they are alone in Dejah’s bridal suite]
John Carter: You look beautiful.
Dejah Thoris: It’s traditional Zodangan, worn by the groom’s mother I’m told. It’s a little vulgar for my taste, but my opinions are about to become irrelevant.
John Carter: You can’t seriously be considering this.
Dejah Thoris: What other choice do I have?
John Carter: Don’t marry him.
Dejah Thoris: Give me a reason not to. Will you stay and fight for Helium? Will you stay? And for Helium?
[Carter looks away from her and glances at his wedding ring]
John Carter: Dejah.
[seeing that Carter will still not agree, she turns away from him]
Dejah Thoris: We have a saying on Barsoom, ‘A warrior may change his metal, but not his heart.’
[she turns to face him again with his medallion in her hand]
Dejah Thoris: You were right, I could decipher the command. It’s a set of sounds, a simple phrase. Repeat after me.
[she takes Carter’s hand]
Dejah Thoris: Ak Ohum Oktay.
[they hear Sab Than and his men outside the room]
Dejah Thoris: Say it now. Ak Ohum Oktay.
John Carter: Ak Ohum Oktay.
Dejah Thoris: Weez.
John Carter: Weez.
Dejah Thoris: Jarsoom.
[Carter looks at her]
Dejah Thoris: Jarsoom.
[Carter hesitates and we hear Sab Than’s men try to bust down the door]
Dejah Thoris: Say it! Say it! Say it!
[just as Carter is about to say ‘Jarsoom’, Sab Than and his men burst into the room]
Sab Than: Dejah, you alone?
[Dejah turns and sees that she’s alone, thinking Carter must have teleported back to Earth]
Dejah Thoris: Yes. I am alone.
[she turns back to Sab Than]
Dejah Thoris: Well, my Jeddak. The moons will soon be rising, let us not delay the proceedings any further.
Sab Than: Yes. Yes, of course.
[as they leave the room we see Carter hiding above in an alcove, he goes into the hallway and sees the older servant woman who attended Dejah transform into Matai Shang]
[after Matai Shang has captured Carter, they ride through the city in a lizard-horse drawn carriage]
John Carter: Who are you?
Matai Shang: American.
John Carter: Who are you, sir?
Matai Shang: Sir? Definitely the South. The Carolinas? Virginia? It’s Virginia, isn’t it? Lovely place.
John Carter: You know it?
Matai Shang: Not as well as I should, but I will.
[looking at Carter’s body]
Matai Shang: Increased strength and agility. Simple matter of gravitation and anatomy, one we ought to have foreseen.
John Carter: We?
Matai Shang: No apparent increase in intelligence. Still this will not do at all.
[he holds up the medallion that brought Carter to Mars]
John Carter: Your kind of Earthmen projecting themselves over here, leaping about, causing all manner of disruption.
John Carter: You’re a Thern.
Matai Shang: Therns are a myth.
[Matai Shang transforms into a Red Man general and leads a now powerless Carter through the city]
Matai Shang: My name is Matai Shang, and I do not exist. Indeed I work very hard at it.
[as Matai Shang leads Carter through the city he transforms into an old woman, he and Carter watch Dejah and Sab Than’s lavish wedding procession]
Matai Shang: It’s a shame really. She’s a remarkable creature and she came very close indeed.
John Carter: You mean the ninth ray.
Matai Shang: It’s of no consequence now. After tonight’s ceremony, when the two moons meet and vows are exchanged, she and anyone else with knowledge of the ninth ray will be eliminated. In effect cutting the head off the beast.
[Matai Shang transforms into his original self again]
Matai Shang: Quick, clean and precise.
[Carter tries to shout to warn Dejah, but cannot as Matai Shang has made him powerless]
Matai Shang: Shame there’s no one to warn her. The balance must be restored.
[Matai Shang transforms into the old woman again]
John Carter: What gives you the right to interfere?
Matai Shang: Do you care? This is not your home, you have no obligation to these people. You don’t have a dog on this side. Is that how you would say it in Virginia? Man without a cause.
[Matai Shang transforms into the general again and takes Carter to a flying ship]
John Carter: So what is your cause?
[Matai Shang transforms into his original self again]
Matai Shang: We have none. We’re not haunted by mortality as you are. We are eternal.
John Carter: I don’t understand, the wedding, this little stroll. Why not just kill me? Kill Dejah?
Matai Shang: History will follow the course we have set, Earthman. And we’ve chosen Sab Than to rule next. The ninth ray must remain in the hands of mindless brutes we can control. And the infamy of Dejah Thor’s wedding death will seal his rain. We’ve been playing these games since before this planet, and we’ll continue to do so long after the death of yours. We don’t cause the destruction of a world, Captain Carter. We simply manage it. Feed off it, if you like. But on every host planet it always plays out exactly the same way. Populations rise, societies divide, wars spread, and all the while the neglected planet slowly fades.
[as Matai Shang is about to place Carter on the ship, Woola arrives on the scene and attacks a shocked Matai Shang]
John Carter: Immortal ain’t bullet proof. I shot one of you back on earth.
[Carter grab the medallion off of Matai Shang and makes a getaway on the flying ship]
[Carter crash-lands the ship in the desert, and Sola finds him]
Sola: I told you Woola would follow you anywhere!
John Carter: He did a lot more than just that.
[Carter tries to get back on the flying ship again]
Sola: Wait! Wait! Where are you going?
John Carter: To save Dejah. And I’ll need an army to do it. Get on.
Sola: No. Tharks do not fly.
[after Carter reaches Tharks city, he finds Tal Hajus is now Jeddak and he throws Carter in prison]
Tars Tarkas: I see the dead.
John Carter: Tars?
Tars Tarkas: The Virginia I know traveled the east.
[Carter sees Tars in the shadows, looking wounded and weak]
John Carter: What have they done to you?
Tars Tarkas: Tal challenged, I lost. Virginia, when I saw you leap into the sky, I wished to believe it was a sign that something new can come into this world. That the greatness of our Thark race might rise again, but it is too late. My daughter is with her mother in paradise, there is comfort in that.
John Carter: Tars. Sola, actually she’s here with me.
[suddenly Tarkas becomes enraged and hits Carter]
Tars Tarkas: This is how you repay your debt to me!
John Carter: Tars!
Tars Tarkas: I need my sword that it would half your thoughtless head from your body!
[Tarkas grabs Carter by the throat and tries to strangle him but suddenly passes out and falls on top of Carter]
[as they are forced to go and fight in the arena]
Tars Tarkas: It is time.
John Carter: Nonsense. Leave a Thark his head in one hand and he may yet concur, right?
Tars Tarkas: Ah, your spirit annoys me.
[addressing the Thark crowd in the arena as Carter and Tarkas emerge into the battle arena]
Tal Hajus: Weakness! Sentiment! Allowing this white worm to contaminate the horde. These are the crimes of Tars Tarkas. We are united because we call our freaks. We are strong, because we despise weakness. Let them be crushed like unhatched eggs!
[after Carter manages to kill the two large apes in the battle arena, he challenges Tal Hajus]
John Carter: I claim the right of challenge!
Tal Hajus: You have no right to challenge! You are not Thark!
Tars Tarkas: He is Thark! He is Dotar Sojat!
[Sola begins chanting]
Sola: Dotar Sojat! Dotar Sojat! Dotar Sojat!
[the crowd of Tharks start to chanting Dotar Sojat, Tal Hajus leaps towards Carter and as Carter leaps up he kills Tal Hajus in mid-air with his sword]
[after killing Tal Hajus in the battle arena, Carter addresses the crowd]
John Carter: The Jeddak of Zodanga means to quash Helium this very night, and if Helium falls, so does Barsoom. We must throw out the thought of old hatreds. Tharks did not cause this, but by Issus, Tharks will end it! We ride for Zodanga!
[the crowd of Tharks cheer]
[in Zodanga the wedding procession is taking place, Dejah walks towards her father]
Tardos Mors: I know that this is not the fate you’d have chosen for yourself, or for Helium. But choice is a luxury, even for a Jeddak of Barsoom. Even if in your heart…
Dejah Thoris: The heart is a luxury.
[Tardos starts walking Dejah down the isle towards Sab Than]
Tardos Mors: Steady.
[Matai Shang is next to Sab Than as they watch Dejah and her father walk towards them]
Matai Shang: Remember, she is not the prize.
[as he whispers to Sab Than, Matai Shang transforms into the Red Man general]
Matai Shang: The prize is Barsoom.
[after discovering that the wedding ceremony is taking place in Helium, Carter tries to convince Tarkas to use Zodanga’s flying ships to get to Helium]
Tars Tarkas: No! I have made my decision.
John Carter: It’s the only way to get there in time!
Tars Tarkas: Tharks do not fly.
John Carter: So be it.
[Carter takes Tarkas’ knife and walks towards the one-man flying ship]
Tars Tarkas: This is madness, Dotar Sojat. You’ll die!
John Carter: Then I’ll see you down the river Iss.
[Carter takes off on the ship]
[in Helium’s palace, a priestess leads Dejah and Sab Than through the wedding ceremony]
Priestess: Like our ancestors before us, we gather under the mingled light of Barsoom’s first lovers, Floras Anthorea.
[as Barsoom’s two moons align, their light flows into the palace through a giant monocle, illuminating the wedding ceremony]
Priestess: As the moons are joined in celestial union, so do we unite, Sab Than and Dejah Thoris, Zodanga and Helium.
[as the wedding ceremony continues we see Carter getting closer to Helium, the priestess fills a chalice with holy water]
Priestess: In the time of oceans, the celestial lovers rose from the sea each night to consummate their love in the sky. Drink now of this holy water and be wed.
[the priestess gives the chalice of water to Sab Than]
Sab Than: So it may be again. I am yours forever.
[he takes a sip of the water]
Dejah Thoris: And I am yours…forever.
[as Dejah is about to take a sip of the water Carter crashes through the palace roof]
Dejah Thoris: Carter!
John Carter: It’s a trap! Zodanga set you up!
[Matai Shang appears beside Sab Than]
John Carter: Do it now!
[suddenly Sab Than draws his sword and grabs hold of Dejah]
Sab Than: Helium falls!
[just as Sab Than tries to kill Deja Carter prevents him and the wedding ceremony devolves into a chaotic fight between the Zodangan and Helium army]
[as Sab Than holds Carter by the end of his sword]
Sab Than: Helium’s fate is sealed, Earthman.
John Carter: As is yours.
[as Sab Than is about to strike Carter, suddenly the Tharks arrive in flying ships]
Tars Tarkas: Thank the Goddess that’s over with!
[after Carter has cuts Sab Than’s arm off that held the Therns weapon]
John Carter: You’re gonna tell me everything you know about the Therns.
Sab Than: If you spare me, I’ll tell you.
[just then a blue webbed material comes out of the weapon from the dismembered arm of Sab Than, constricting and killing Sab him, then gets hold of Carter, who sees that Matai Shang, disguised as Tarkas is controlling it]
[just as Carter is about to be killed by the blue webbed material, Dejah stops Matai Shang, he turns and morphs into Dejah and takes hold of Dejah as Carter leaps up towards them]
Matai Shang: A fitting solution for Sab Than. Wouldn’t you say, Captain? Dejah Thoris survives her assassin, but will fail to prove her misguided theory of the ninth ray. Yes, I’ll enjoy playing that out.
[Dejah suddenly grabs hold of the medallion from Matai Shang’s and throws it at Carter]
Dejah Thoris: Carter!
[Carter throws the medallion away from Matai Shang]
[as Matai Shang teleports away from Carter and Dejah, he morphs into Carter and sees that Tarkas has picked up the medallion]
Matai Shang: Tars, the medallion. Give it to me, my Jeddak.
[the real Carter notices them and sees that Tarkas is giving the medallion to Matai Shang, he tries to stop him but Matai Shang teleports away, Tarkas looks at Carter confused]
John Carter: I’ll explain later.
Tars Tarkas: You have won, my Jeddak. All is finished
[Carter looks over at Dejah]
John Carter: Not quite.
[referring to the Jeddak robe the Tharks had given him]
Dejah Thoris: Jeddak? I see you have changed your metal.
John Carter: And my heart.
[he takes his wife’s wedding ring from his finger, kneels in front of Dejah and holds her hand]
John Carter: Dejah Thoris, would a Princess of Mars ever consider marrying to a wayward, Virginia Cavalryman, with nothing to offer?
Dejah Thoris: Yes. John Carter. Yes!
[Carter and Dejah finish the wedding ceremony that she and Sab Than began]
Tardos Mors: By the ancient right of moons and water, are you bound together, husband and wife.
[Carter and Dejah kiss and the wedding crowd cheers]
[Dejah awakes to find Carter standing on their balcony]
Dejah Thoris: Homesick for the Thark nursery?
John Carter: I’m sorry. I couldn’t sleep. I had that feeling you get suddenly that…you left a light burning or a door open.
[he turns to her]
John Carter: Go back to bed. I won’t be long.
[she kisses his hand and returns to their room and Carter takes Woola for a walk]
[Carter and Woola take a stroll and stop at a balcony, Carter looks at the medallion that brought him to Mars]
John Carter: John Carter of Earth.
[he tosses the medallion over the balcony]
John Carter: Yep. John Carter of Mars, sounds much better.
[Carter turns to go back to Dejah, but a guard stops to him to thank him]
Humble Guard: Sire, I must express the deepest of gratitude for saving Helium.
Please, the honor is mine.
[suddenly the guard morphs into Matai Shang]
Matai Shang: Fair enough, Earthman. Now it’s your move.
[Matai Shang touches Carter, repeats the command phrase and sends Carter back to earth]
[back on Earth, Carter awakens in Evil Spider Cave, he sees Powell’s skeletal remains in the cave, sobs and tries to return to Barsoom but fails]
John Carter: [voice over] Fifty millions miles apart, and no way to bridge the gap, no way to return my body and my soul to their true home. Like a fool I’d thrown away my medallion. Then I recalled Matai Shang, his knowledge of earth, of my history. It mean Therns were a presence on this world, the cave in Arizona was proof. There might be other such proofs, other Thern way stations hidden all around the world. I knew now what the cave of gold must be used for. So for ten bitter years I searched, on the trail of rumor and legend, I fared it out every possible evidence of Therns, but I found no medallion. And then it came to me.
[after Carter finds another medallion on Earth, he explains to Burroughs his plans]
John Carter: [voice over] And once it came, there were many plans I had to make in secret. I could trust no one else. I had long suspected that the Therns were following my movements.
[we see how Carter staged his own death and burial]
John Carter: [voice over] Now you’ll understand the cause of my sudden death. The reason for my bizarre funeral instructions. Why the door can only be opened from the inside. For if my body dies on earth, then my copy dies on Mars. You are the key, this is the task I entrust to you along with all my fortune. Protect my body, the Therns will attempt to destroy it. In the time it has taken you to read these pages, they may have already done so.
[back in Carter’s study we see Burroughs finishing reading Carter’s journal and gets up to rush over to Carter’s mausoleum]
Edgar Rice Burroughs: I am the key. I am the key! I, Edgar.
[he looks for clues on the mausoleum door]
Edgar Rice Burroughs: Ed! E…D!
[he presses the letters E-D in ‘Inter Mundos’ engraved on the mausoleum door, but nothing happens, frustrated Burroughs takes out the telegraph Carter had sent him and reads]
Edgar Rice Burroughs: ‘Dear, Ned’. He never called me Edgar. He called me Ned!
[he presses the letters N-E-D in the ‘Inter Mundos’ engraved on the mausoleum door and the door opens, Ned is shocked to discover his uncle’s body is missing, Matai Shang appears behind him, about to kill him, but Carter appears and shoots him]
John Carter: Hello, Ned.
[last lines; after discovering Carter is alive, Carter explains how he faked his own death]
John Carter: Toxin, derived from a puffer fish, simulates death.
[Carter finds the medallion on Matai Shang’s body]
Edgar Rice Burroughs: You never found the medallion?
John Carter: No. That’s why I’m so grateful to you for bringing me one.
Edgar Rice Burroughs: I…I was just bate?
John Carter: No. You’re far more than that. I really do need a protector. That is, if you’re willing.
[Ned agrees and hugs Carter]
John Carter: Goodbye, Ned.
[Carter turns to go into the mausoleum]
John Carter: Oh, and Ned. Take up a cause, fall in love, write a book.
[as he’s about to close the mausoleum door]
John Carter: It’s time I went home.
[he shuts the door, lays down on the body slab, and says the phrase that will return him to Barsoom]
John Carter: Ak Ohum Oktay Weez…
[he sees Dejah saying ‘Barsoom’ and smiles before repeating the word]