Oz the great and powerfully entertaining


Milan Sani , Contributing Writer

Disney’s Oz: The Great and Powerful takes you on a thrilling journey as a prologue to the classic movie The Wizard of Oz.  Although this movie cannot be compared to the timeless wonder of The Wizard of Oz, it still depicts an intriguing, majestic quest to defeat evil and achieve greatness.

Oscar Briggs (James Franco) is a small-time circus magician in Kansas, with clouded morals and incredible wit.  One day, Oscar is whisked away from Kansas on a hot air balloon to the wonderful, kaleidoscopic Land of Oz.  Upon landing in Oz, a good witch named Theodora (Mila Kunis) mistakes him for the wizard who everyone has been waiting for since a king prohesized, long ago, that one would arrive.

This wizard was said to have boundless power that can save the people of Oz from being terrorized by the evil witch.  Enticed with the gold and riches that come with being the man of power in Oz, Oscar accepts the challenge to defeat the evil witch.  Once he begins this dangerous task, he is forced to find out who the true good and evil witches are before the people of Oz suffer.  Through the use of illusion, tactical plans, and the passion to succeed, Oscar is able to become the great powerful wizard he was said to be.

Classic features of The Wizard of Oz, such as the cowardly lion, scarecrows, and liveliness of the land, were enjoyable to watch.   Incredible special effects transported viewers to Oz to experience the impressive Emerald City, the famous yellow brick road, and the ominous dark forest.

Furthermore, this movie delved into many themes, such as teamwork and perseverance amid fear. Moreover, this film allows the moviegoer to reminisce about the iconic Wizard of Oz and to revisit its greatness, even though this film,  did not quite reach the marvel of The Wizard of Oz.

Although compelling and generally enjoyable, the movie had scenes that were scattered, and many which lacked the true spirit and energy needed to portray the vibrant land of Oz.  Additionally, the great music and innocence of the original 1939 film was somewhat lost within this elaborate story.

With Michelle Williams as Glinda, Mila Kunis as Theodora, Rachel Weisz as Evanora, and James Franco as Oscar Briggs, the movie had no lack of acting talent.

It was interesting to see Mila Kunis transform from a beautiful figure to a despicable, hideous witch throughout the movie.

James Franco, however, lacked charisma onscreen.  Oz was a person of great charm, attitude, intelligence and humor but James Franco was unable to convey such characteristics, which had a negative effect on the movie.

The director creates a magical environment around a gritty story.  Oz is a fresh spin on a classic tale.