College Essay Examples

Creating the World and Updating Your Source Material

The public domain story chosen is A Princess of Mars, written by Edgar Rice Burroughs. It is a science fiction book from the Barsoom series. Also, it is one of the first stories of Burrough that predates the Tarzan stories. It is composed of more swordplay and daring feats; thus, it is considered pulp fiction during the 20th century. It captures more planetary romance scenes with some bit of Western elements. 

Using Burrough’s iconic creation in the story, John Carter, we can develop an adaptation to develop a movie called John Carter. Through science fiction, we can update various things that are missing in the novel. I want to spotlight the character’s adventure to bring about elements of action and excitement. We can coin the adventure of John Carter to elaborate on the Planetary Romance as a sub-genre of science fiction. The fictions are mostly seen through the encounters of the adventurers at their destinations and not covering much of how they travel from planet to planet. An adaptation of this story, we can blend science, magic, and fantasy elements to create speculation strange creatures and exotic settings. Mars is explored in a different view than what Burrough depicts. In A Princess of Mars, John Carter acts like an agent of peace among different races and is joined by a female character, Dejah Thoris, whose role is love interest with plenty of agency. I can update the characters to conform to the contemporary roles, such as mediating during disagreements between two groups and be the change-makers in the world of science. Importantly, the dress code of the character will not be the same as that described in the novel. The book shows that the characters depict too much nakedness. I would groom them with modern designer clothes to show decency as they have to change to learned people. Being an adventure film, it is important to include traveling means such as spaceships. The movement from planet to planet requires science fiction based on the modes of transport. 

When the book opens, John Carter is described as far older than many humans and does not recall his birth. Besides, he connects to the Carter family as an “honorary uncle” and not through blood relations. The author hints that the adventure to Mars is one of the strange aspects about John Carter but does not expound on that. I can use the missing explanation to expounded the fiction behind it. Through the spaceships, I develop a scene where he travels to space but edits a place to look like the surface of Mars to allow the viewers to conceptualize with it. Also, I will prefer an older character whose age is realistic due to the modern times that finding unrealistic is impossible. Therefore, the intention is to create modern science and technology to fit the future needs of viewers. Since the novel’s storyline comes after the Civil war, the character is supposed to look for his fortune. However, instead of running in a mysterious cave while inhaling a mysterious gas, the structure should change to have maybe bushy vegetation to adapt the setting to current vegetation. Therefore, the character John should display some form of modernity despite the reformation of the body using science fiction. 

Burrough describes the planet as quite current based on scientific thinking in the book. The thinking remains the same because Mars is still thought to have an atmosphere thinner than that of the Earth. However, the thinner atmosphere is still making it breathable. Therefore, to convince the viewers that Carter has reached another planet shows the contraction of his muscles. In the book, Carter can leap, which saved him from giant armed humanoid warriors. The giants will still be in the setting, but I would make Carter a normal human being with modern weapons such as guns and explosions to help him fight the giants. Therefore, it will mean that the giants are habitants of Mars for many years. It creates an illusion of the planet’s surface to compare it to Earth while depicting the necessity of technological advancements. 

The closeup of the storyline captures John Carter forging a friendship with Tars Tarkas, the head of his captives, to upend the political and culture on Barsoom. We capture him saving the entire population from death. The end must always leave the viewer in suspense or gloomed to the screens. I will make the headlong action and adventurers that Carter experiences remain part of the viewers by making Carter face a dilemma but faking love for the Green Martians who captured him. However, it would also end when Carter bonds with Dejah Thoris to foresee the future after leaving Mars. The notion is to create a substantial experience that everyone can comprehend. Overall, the novel A Princess of Mars can be adapted to a contemporary storyline to have a modern film. 

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By Hanna Robinson

Hanna has won numerous writing awards. She specializes in academic writing, copywriting, business plans and resumes. After graduating from the Comosun College's journalism program, she went on to work at community newspapers throughout Atlantic Canada, before embarking on her freelancing journey.

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