I have been eagerly waiting for Oz, the Great and Powerful (from Disney) for months and months. There are few movies I am so eager to see that I attend on the day it releases (Christmas Day releases being the notable exception). But I knew from the first moment I heard about Oz that I would be there on March 8th.
I am such a huge fans of the 1939 Wizard of Oz movie. I have it on Blu-Ray and on my iPad, and I watch it at least three or four times a year. I own a couple of different Wizard of Oz nicknacks that were gifts from people who love and know me. My daughters took me to see Wicked on my birthday (best. birthday. present. ever.), and I love the book (and its sequels) on which the musical was based.
I’m a F.A.N. of just about any form of this story.
First, Oz, the Great and Powerful is a visual feast. We didn’t go to the 3D because we have been disappointed too many times with 3D versions. We are both sorry we didn’t try it this time, and we may go back and see it again in 3D. Maybe we’ll even splurge and go to the Imax.
I read one rather average review that expressed disappointment because the witches didn’t die or get their just desserts in the end. The viewer wanted total resolution and for right to vanquish evil. Huh? This is a prequel that sets up how the three witches became the Wicked Witch of the West, her sister the Wicked Witch of the East (who later gets smashed by Dorothy’s house, as you’ll recall), and Glinda, the Good Witch. How could anyone not know this movie must end with all three of them still alive? There is resolution, but not the kind that reviewer wanted.
Oz is about the wizard. Face it. In the 1939 movie, the wizard is more of a footnote than a major character. In this movie he is front and center. Another review (EW) was rather harsh about James Franco’s portrayal of the wizard. Again I say, Huh? I liked the actor. I liked the wizard’s character arc. I am not convinced that another actor (Robert Downey Jr was once attached to the project) would have played him any better. EW also said this was a movie for kids. Well, maybe I’m just an “antique little girl,” ’cause I loved it. Maybe being the F.A.N. that I am I was predisposed to love this movie. Maybe others won’t be as thoroughly entertained as I was. But I liked it enough to recommend that you give it a try.