Martian society is matriarchal.
It is a cold, emotionless place where love doesn’t exist. Kids are born every couple of decades. No one on the planet understands nurturing, so they need what Earth moms have to offer -- love, hugging, companionship, etc.
So every couple of decades an Earth mom is kidnapped, their mothering instincts are zapped out of their brains and implanted in the nannies charged with caring for the kids.
Enter Milo. He has a fight with his mom. While he’s asleep, Martians grab her. He wakes up just in time and slips aboard the ship. Milo is determined to save his mother and apologize but has no clue how.
This misstep and that lead him to Gribble, video game addicted grown-up who — like Milo — a decade ago, tried to save his mom.
The two take on the Nazi-like Martian society in all the usual Disney formula ways. There is some slapstick and pratfalls and the life lesson for target audience kids.
Though I’ve never read the book, those I know that have -- and they love it. From what I read, though, they’re not going to be happy with what they find here. The 3D effects are amazing, but effects alone don’t make a good movie.
Mars — in this case — needs more than moms. You know this when the outtakes at the end of a film explaining how it was shot and how the effects were done are more interesting than the movie.
This film, though kid friendly and no doubt kid fun, will be barely tolerable for adults.
Mr. Movie rating: 3 stars
Rated PG for mature themes. It opens Friday, March 11 at Regal’s Columbia Center 8 and at the Fairchild Cinemas 12.
5 stars to 4 1/2 stars: Must see on the big screen
4 stars to 3 1/2 stars: Good film, see it if it's your type of movie.
3 stars to 2 1/2 stars: Wait until it comes out on video.
2 stars to 1 star: Don't bother.
0 stars: Speaks for itself.