Oz The Great and Powerful is the number one movie in America at the moment as it tells the story of how Oz got to Oz. The film stars James Franco as Oz who, after a Tornado, is taken to Oz where he is seen as the great Wizard who will stop the wicked witch. Overall the movie delivered on its goals, as it serves as a nice prequel and sets up a sequel nicely.
James Franco was actually good in this movie, which is shocking because the only other movie I have seen him in where he did a good job acting in was Pineapple Express because well he played a stoner and the guy always looks like a stoner. Yes I saw 127 hours, and no I couldnt get past the stupid expression he had on his face the entire time.
The movie spends some time in Kansas before going to Oz, however this small time in Kansas is necessary as it sets up Oz the character and others. There are some great parallels between the characters from both places, and it works out nicely. For instance the little girl, his assistant, and "the one that got away" all have parts in Oz which is a positive for the film in my book.
Once he gets to Oz he first meets Mila Kunis and then goes on his way. I will not spoil anything, but the scenes with these 2 really work as the background with Oz in Kansas nicely sets up what will happen when he is with Mila.
Oz then goes on his journey, and picks up companions along the way towards his ultimate goal of getting all that gold! The movie really picks up when he meets the doll. I mean honestly she steals the movie with every scene she is in. From the moment you meet her you cannot help but feel bad for this doll and then she just owns every moment she is in. The fact that she was voiced by the same girl from Kansas is just icing on the cake. The flying monkey is hilarious as well, so they do a good job of balancing each other out. The supporting cast is just awesome. Everyone he meets on the way serves a purpose, especially the town outside of the Emerald City it was nicely done.
The movie moves along at a nice pace, the reveal is predictable but hey it is a kids movie so you will forgive that. The movie then leads up to characters changing who they are and becoming what they thought was impossible to become. It harkens back to the theme of the original movie and is nicely done.
The final battle also tries to do a bit of a twist, but again it is predictable and does not come as a twist at all. However that doesnt stop the final battle from still being full of emotion and character redemption/growth.
The movie did a great job of building up this characters you want to cheer for, however like most kids movies the motives of the villians are unclear at times at worst and at best incredibly simple.
The first Oz was highly regarded because of its technicolor, however this movie's special effects leave much to be desired. It is almost as if they were not sure if this movie would be profitable so they did not go all out on the graphics which look pretty fake at times. It is a shame as there were plenty of opportunities to do it.
If you are looking for a nice fun kids movie about redemption go see Oz, it does a great job of doing that. However being a fun kids movie does not make it a good movie overall, as there are several way too convenient and flat out dumb moments done by characters. Warning Spoilers: For instance Glinda just happens to be in the dark forest for well no real reason, Theodora doesnt realize a bunch of flying monkeys coming in and out of the city? honestly? These people living outside the emerald city in oz have a shield to protect them against wickedness and Glinda is clearly flying in and out and yet NO ONE IN THE EMERALD CITY BEFORE OZ ARRIVED SEEMS TO EVER HEAR ABOUT THIS!. End Spoilers.