Film Review Oz - The Great and Powerful
Oz: The Great and Powerful
Oz: The Great and Powerful, directed by Sami Raimi, is now out in UK on DVD and blue ray. This new Disney fantasy film is a prequel to the Wizard of Oz, so don't go expecting a Dorothy!
This is definitely one of my favourite fantasy films. I am a big Wizard of Oz fan, and this new prequel had a lot to live up to considering Judy Garland's amazing role in the original film. But it really exceeded my expectations.
It seems that the Wizard (played by James Franco) is much more prominent in this film than in the original 1939 version of the 'The Wizard of Oz'. In the Wizard of Oz 1939 version, the Wizard features at the end, but in Oz: The Great and Powerful he is the key character.
Read on for my full film review.
Trailer Oz: The Great and Powerful
Oz: The Great and Powerful
The film is set before the Wizard of Oz, and in this prequel aims to answers questions about the characters, including 'Where did the Wizard come from?' and 'Why was there animosity between Glenda the good witch and the Wicked Witch of the West?'
The opening scene shows Oz - a magician from Kansas doing performances for a pittance in an attempt to survive. This draws parallels with the Wizard of Oz when Dorothy's house gets taken away by a Twister. In Oz: The Great and Powerful, Oz gets taken away by a Twister in his balloon.
When the 'Wizard' arrives in Oz, he is eager to be crowned the King of the Emerald City, even if it means puling the wool over the eyes of everyone around him, and shielding them from the truth about who he really is - a magician who uses trickery and optical illusions rather than a real wizard. But the people of Oz believe that he is fulfilling a long awaited prophecy, and that he can save them from the Wicked Witch.
The film describes the relationship between three witches - Evanora, Theodora and Glinda. I don't want to give too much away, but it explains why the Wicked Witch became so Wicked! In a way., it is slightly reminiscent of the book and theatre production of 'Wicked'.
Oz (James Franco) has to protect the people of the Emerald city from the evil witches, but, considering he is not a real Wizard? Can he do it? He devises an elaborate plan of deception with the assistance of the Munchkins. Watch the film to find out what happens!
Great and Powerful Oz Stuff on Amazon
The Great and Powerful Oz - On the set with Entertainment Tonight
***** 5 Stars!
James Franco does an absolutely amazing job in the role of the Wizard. The wonderful plot in the fantasy land of Oz is combined with themes of love and friendship wonderfully. And if you think that it can't live up to the colorful and striking setting of the 1939 version of The Wizard of Oz, you couldn't be more wrong! The poppy field, yellow brick road and Emerald city are brighter and more stunning than you could imagine. The flying monkeys are scarier and the munchkins are even more hilarious. The final scene, where the Wizard grants gifts to his friends is so moving that it may bring a tear to your eye. This is a great family film that you shouldn't miss.