Director: Sam Raimi
Writers: Mitchell Kapner (screenplay), David Lindsay-Abaire (screenplay), L. Frank Baum (series)
Stars: James Franco, Michelle Williams, Rachel Weisz
Release Date: March 8, 2013
A small-time magician is swept away to an enchanted land and is forced into a power struggle between three witches.
I saw Oz on Thursday, despite horrid reviews and this article in The Atlantic stating that a good adaptation of The Wizard of Oz has not been made since 1939. The stars were aligned in the Golden Age of Hollywood and have yet to meet again.
The beginning showed so much promise, Kansas was in sepia tone and there was a nod to MGM’s film during Oscar’s decent in the twister; things flying through the air and his balloon basket landing like Dorothy’s house; I also enjoyed the transition for black and white turned color. But once the Witch turned green it was all down hill.
The acting was actually pretty good and was impressed by James Franco’s portrayal of Oscar “Oz” Diggs; although, I think the movie dwelled too much on the three witches (South, East and West) and would have preferred a bigger focus on the Wizard. It did explain the animosity between the three witches, east and west being scorned by Wizard for south. All three were aware that the Wizard was a fraud and because of which formed alliances.
The ending had a battle scene that went on way to long, something that could of been condensed into 5 minutes was spread out into 20. It felt like they just wanted to show off all the special effects they could do. I debated walking out but by that point I had invested so much time into it that I had to see it out.
When Oz first came out I saw an interview with the cast and director, all were very subdued and noncommittal. Now I know why, this movie was an embarrassment akin to the Wizard’s lack of magic.