Oz The Great and Powerful – or Oz the okayish and meh I guess
So I genuinely have a lot to say about this film – which is strange because it’s essentially just a perfectly underwhelming film targeted towards kids. If you’re a parent and you want to entertain your kids for a few hours without speaking to them – take them to see this film! What I wouldn’t expect is to really get a lot out of this film as an adult. I’m sorry – I just don’t think this film holds up for older audiences. I found it pretty tedious.
SO – to summarize my thoughts and because I’m chronically lazy – here’s a POST-IT REVIEW of Oz The Great and Powerful:
I could discuss more of my problems with the film – I mean in terms of a prequel it’s fiiine. It does a great job at setting up a lot of the mythology of The Wizard of Oz without being TOO cringe-worthy. The script is pretty awful at times – to the point where James Franco’s attractiveness can occasionally come under scrutiny when you realize he can’t pull-off a rubbish script. And this is coming from someone with craaaaaaazy low standards… Like record-breakingly low. The other day I put some McNuggets in the trash – and a few hours later I picked them out and ate them. And I’M telling you he can’t carry this film.
Also – and this is just nitpickery – but please don’t decide to try and mirror the absolutely iconic sepia-to-color change of The Wizard of Oz with a 4:3/black-and-white to full-frame/color change if it’s going to be one of the least flashy or interesting moments of the film. This is my biggest problem – for a film about the Wonderful Wizard of Oz – there is NO wonder whatsoever. Things just happen. I liked the look how elements of the carnival in the beginning of the film would fly out of the frame and into what was supposed to be black space, but I didn’t think it was appropriate? Why have doves fly out of the restrictions of the film if you’re trying to make it seem like an oldey-timey film? That to me just seemed counter-productive. BUT I THOUGHT IT LOOKED GOOD. That’s the point of this film, I guess. It looks fine (most of the time). The 3D works well and is used okay…
Michelle Williams is still doing a Marylin impression throughout the film. Much like Nicole Kidman in Cold Mountain, nobody told Michelle that they weren’t supposed to whisper throughout the whole film. Mila Kunis is pretty average. Rachel Weisz I think is a fantastic performer and FOR ME she and Zach Braff (shudder) were actually the two who really pushed the film forward. Scenes without them becomes scenes that really drag.
Look. I really liked the opening credits. I also liked the part where Michelle Williams offhandedly refers to her vagina (you’ll know it when you hear it, perverts). Other than that – it’s super blah.
Don’t expect your balloon to be blown away by this blustery prequel. Rent The Wizard of Oz instead.