Oz the Great and Powerful (2013) 3D hollywood movies review

Overview – Oscar Diggs (James Franco), a small-time circus magician with dubious ethics, is hurled away from dusty Kansas to the vibrant Land of Oz. At first he thinks he’s hit the jackpot-fame and fortune are his for the taking. That all changes, however, when he meets three witches, Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz), and Glinda (Michelle Williams), who are not convinced he is the great wizard everyone’s been expecting. Reluctantly drawn into the epic problems facing the Land of Oz and its inhabitants, Oscar must find out who is good and who is evil before it is too late. Putting his magical arts to use through illusion, ingenuity-and even a bit of wizardry-Oscar transforms himself not only into the great and powerful Wizard of Oz but into a better man as well.

In the interest of full disclosure, I need to state up front that ‘The Wizard of Oz’ holds a special place in my heart. More than one of my all-time favorite movies, it’s also one of the most personally influential films I have ever seen. Victor Fleming’s 1939 classic sparked my interest in cinema, even though – as an impressionable five-year-old as wide-eyed as Dorothy herself – I was too young to realize it at the time. Packed with whimsy, relatable, salt-of-the-earth themes, opulent beauty, high spirits, a captivating sense of wonder, and more heart than the Tin Man could possibly hold in his cavernous chest cavity, ‘The Wizard of Oz’ never ceases to amaze, delight, and soothe me. And I’m sure many others feel the same way.

So it was with a bit of trepidation and a heaping helping of cautious optimism that I settled in to experience Disney’s prequel of sorts to the iconic L. Frank Baum tale. I had seen the trailers for ‘Oz The Great and Powerful’ multiple times, and was intrigued by the story, impressed with the production values, and hopeful the tone would be reverential, not brash. (One more confession: I’m also not a fan of the Broadway musical ‘Wicked,’ yet another prequel of sorts to ‘The Wizard of Oz.’) While at Disneyland this spring, I even took in a special sneak peek at the film – a 10-minute excerpt in 3D that further fueled my interest. Maybe, just maybe, I thought, someone (director Sam Raimi?) has finally captured the world of Oz and its elusive spirit in a way that might possibly rival the tone and presentation of the beloved original.


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