In a few early moments of low-key, almost offhand humor, John Carter manages to recall the original Star Wars trilogy it so desperately hopes to emulate. But it doesn’t take long for the movie to feel a lot more like George Lucas’s more recent and far inferior Star Wars prequels. A sprawling mass of expensive (and often beautiful) 3-D effects in search of an interesting story, John Carter sends a Civil War-era tough guy (Taylor Kitsch) all the way to Mars in search of cinematic adventure. He does find a bunch of giant, four-armed, E.T.-green Martians, and a beautiful human princess he can rescue. That’s about as far as it goes. The details don’t make a lot of sense, but the real problem is that we don’t much care. At least there won’t be any prequels.