|A small-time magician arrives in an enchanted land and is forced to decide if he will be a good man or a great one.|
The super short version: Oz the Great and Powerful was quite bad. Skip it.
My expectations were not very high for Oz, but I was greatly disappointed nonetheless. Despite being bankrolled and produced by Disney, with quite the record of success, Oz failed on so many levels.
The most notable failure was the acting. James Franco’s performance was predictable good for much of the movie but terrible off-base for others. He just never seemed to really find his place in the movie except for a few scenes. All of the actors, including each of the witches were painful to watch during most scenes. I felt like I was watching a highschool play at times, forgetting for many segments that the movie cost many millions.
Mila Kunis was most disappointing of all. Her first appearance onscreen was very painful and unnatural to watch. She didn’t improve throughout the movie either. She may not be Anne Hathaway but I expected much more from her acting skills.
Despite not being the primary target audience for Oz, I was unimpressed by the lack of universal appeal. Pixar, for example, is very successful at making movies that can entertain both kids and adults alike. Unfortunately, Disney has a long way to go in this respect, Oz being a great example. Many scenes were rather childish and played out too far as a very cheesy fairytale.
The one saving grace was the visual appeal, although it still fell far short of comparable visual masterpieces like Alice in Wonderland. Despite the fantasy landscapes being well put-together, other visual effects were not. The witches moved unnaturally in several scenes – so much so that you could easily picture the ropes and pulleys pulling them into the air.
I found myself laughing awkwardly, sighing, and rolling my eyes throughout at least half a dozen scenes. Oz was easily one of the worst movies I have seen in a long time. Viewer beware!