The language used in the film John Carter is Barsoomian.

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The vocabulary used in John Carter's film is Barsoomian. Language includes lexical vocabulary and grammatical phrases such as prepositions and pronouns. The fictional language has initial consonants that are suffixed: (tu 'I,' kik 'him,' cut 'me,' ki 'he') and, in the plural, are implied as (du/gi/dud) which means (we/they/us). The Barsoomian language has ten vowels, five short and five long. The short ones are; (a, e, I o, u) while the long ones are (aa/ey/ee/oa/and oo). There are gliding vowels in the language (ao is/how/and ay is/high/). Although the Barsoomian language is similar to English, it has an addition of consonantal sounds, which are (ch [x] and gh [y]).

While watching this movie, dominantly and possibly confusing phonetics are k’s and t’s. Their use in this movie is boundless, thus creating aspirated soundless stops. Some of the statements containing the pronunciation of these phonetic characters are as follows:

[mi dutʃe] “…hell are you?”  (spoken by Tars Tarkas upon seeing Carter, following Carter’s own “What the…” utterance)

[sɑ tʃɑ tʃik] “don’t shoot him” ( spoken by Tars Tarkas telling his fellow people not to shoot Carter)

[ʤɑteth] “don’t run” (spoken by Tars Tarkas to John Carter)

[tsɑtɑ] “it’s okɑy” (-Tars Tarkas)

[sɑkh | səlɛt˺ sɑk vəˈʤɑkh]  “Jump!  Jump like you did before.” (-Tars Tarkas tells Carter when he realizes he is different from them)

[sɑkh] “jump”.

In the film, there are many nouns, which are easy to identify because nouns are names of particular people, places, or things. Besides, determiners like (a and the) mostly precede nouns. John Carter mentions (Turkey), which is a name of a country when the postal worker asks him where he was sending the letter. Also, when Edgar meets the lawyer, who was to instruct him on his uncle's last request he introduces himself as (Nicholas Woodeson) (John Carter). An Indian who tells Carter there is (gold) mentions (cave) the place where the gold is kept. In the scene where Carter is kidnapped, the Colonel mentions (South Calvary of the United States). Besides the mentioned nouns, pronouns like (he and I) are also used when the actors are addressing other people or themselves.

Basic terms such as; (‘Run!’ ‘Hell are you!’ and ‘get up!’) are used in the film. When a strange person appears towards Carter in the cave, Colonel Shouts (Run! Run!) to warn him. (Hell are you!) is exclaimed by Tars Tarkas upon seeing Carter. Also, Carter shouts at Colonel (get up!) when he sees the Apache approaching them. Some parts of speech are intelligible thus using an adjective. For example, the colonel terms Carter as a (valuable) person in the United States since he is a Calvary man.

There is also the use of gestures in the film. For example, Dejay uses her hand to make a gesture to Carter. She makes the gesture wanting to know what Carter meant when he was telling her that she would fight and die for her. Another gesture is seen when Woola is gesturing Lakor to maintain silence so that they can move to another corridor without being seen. When Carter lands on Mars, he meets creatures with limbs, and when they want to attack him, Tarkas waves them to stop.

Finally, the film has various graphics such as a foreign language and arts. When Carter lands on Mars, the creatures living there talk a different language thus creating language barrier. Art is seen in Mars and other areas where many of the chambers are marked with strange markings as well as the wall and roof lined with gold. The strange markings have hidden meanings that only a particular person has knowledge about them. The film is rich in linguistic features that make the John Carter a great movie.

Work Cited

John Carter. Online video clip 123Movies. 123movies 2012. Web. 3rd march 2017. Retrieved from:

October 12, 2022

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