OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL
Long before there was a Dorothy, Ruby slippers, and a Tin Man, there was Oscar Diggs “Oz” (James Franco), a con man and magician who traveled with a small circus throughout Kansas. His dream was to be “GREAT”, like Houdini or Thomas Edison. Oz is a true fast talking womanizer. Any woman that he took a liking to, he would give very special music box that belonged to his grandmother. He must have had at least 50 grandmothers. After a shaky performance and a run in with the Strongman (over a music box), Oz hops aboard his hot air balloon and makes a fast getaway, straight into the path of a Tornado, which drops him off in the land of OZ.
Things move quickly from here. Oz meets a beautiful witch named Theodora (Mila Kunis) who proclaims him the Great and Powerful Wizard of OZ that was foretold would fall from the sky and save the land from the evil Witch. Being the lady’s man, Oz gives Theodora a (come on, you know it) music box. Theodora is instantly in love. Along the way to the Emerald City, they meet a winged monkey named Finley (Zach Braff), a dwarf who loves to blow a horn, attacked by the wicked witch's flying baboons, and are escorted by the Winkie Guards. Once at the castle, Oz meets another beautiful Witch named Evanora (Rachel Weisz) who tells him he must get the wand of the wicked witch in order to save the people, become King of OZ, and own all the gold the treasury holds. With gold in his eyes, Oz sets off with Finley and China Girl, to get the wicked witch's wand. Once he finds her he realizes that she is not wicked but the beautiful Good Witch Glinda (Michelle Williams). Together they come up with a plan to defeat the real evil Witch and save the people of OZ.
My advice is to forget ever seeing the Wizard of OZ, the cartoons, Broadway shows and touring companies, or school plays. If you do this, you won’t get a head of the story. After going through the sequence, Dorothy’s visit will make more sense. You will kind of understand where the Tin Man and scarecrow came from, and how the Lion became a coward. I do think there is another prequel before Dorothy drops the house and the Wizard gets to go home.
Simply put, I liked it. It’s cute, kept my interest, and I loved the transformation of the Wicked Witch.
I say SPEND THE MONEY and see OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL in the theaters.