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Oz the Great and Powerful (2013)

Genres

Adventure, Fantasy

Director

Sam Raimi

Country

USA

Cast

James Franco, Michelle Williams, Rachel Weisz, Mila Kunis, Zach Braff, Bill Cobbs, Joey King, Rony Cox, Stephen R. Hart, BRuce Campbell, Abigail Spencer

Storyline

Oscar "Oz" Diggs (James Franco), a frustrated magician from Kansas, is transported to the magical land of Oz where he will have to fulfil a prophecy and release the land from the Wicked Witches. 

Opinion

I remember being interested in seeing Oz the Great and Powerful when it hit theatres but I eventually sit it out because I had a bad feeling about it. And four years later it turns out I was right. While it still is a bit engaging and entertaining, it's far from being great as the title suggests.

The film has a very simple story that is easy to follow and predictable; it doesn't have a lot of depth and sometimes it is a bit unfocused. Also, it doesn't even have an unexpected plot twist, although the filmmakers were clever enough to keep you waiting for one through the film which is how the film managed to be engaging.

The story isn't the only problem script-wise. The dialogue is pretty poor as well, especially the Theodora's (Mila Kunis),  and, at times, it is just too Disney and ends up insulting the intelligence of the viewer regardless of the age.

The characters are another weak-ish link. They lack proper development and they are incredibly rushed and the villains don't have a very strong motivation. In spite of these flaws, some of them - Finley, the flying monkey, and China Girl, a little living doll - still manage to be likeable and it's easy to care for them. 

The performances of some of the actors also help, although I'm not sure James Franco was the right cast for the young Oz as he comes across as a creepy Oz. But that's his trademark after all. Mila Kunis also was a poor choice for Theodora as she seems lost all the time. On the other hand, there's Rachel Weisz who gives a solid performance as Evanora, the other Wicked Witch.

At last, there is the visual aspect of the film. Although they are a bit cheesy at times, over all the special effects are pretty good, and the sets and costumes are quite beautiful as well. 

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