Spoiler Alert: I do my best to keep those wicked spoilers away but as I have learned the hard way one person's spoiler is another person's common knowledge. "The monkeys fly?!" (Review after awesome pic.)
So what did DragynAlly really think of Oz the Great and Powerful? Well between you and me... I liked it! I really really liked it! I have been avoiding internet reviews and tweets from friends who got into early screenings because I was hearing STRONG opinions and I didn't want them clouding my own. But after seeing it for myself I can say I genuinely enjoyed it and actually can't wait for it to hit DVD. As my guys and dolls know I like to do my movie reviews in list form so...
- There is no need to have any previous knowledge of any books or movies (or Oz related media) before hand. In fact I think my lack of preconceived notions made Oz the Great and Powerful a lot of fun for me. I didn't know what to expect so everything I saw was really cool. Despite what I just said I did enjoy how Oz the Great and Powerful paid homage to the 1930's Wizard of Oz. Including a very cool color change in the first few minutes of the film.
- The imagery in this film is some of the best I have ever seen! This is a gorgeous film. The sets, the colors, the costumes all beautiful and so much fun to look at. I actually wish I could just hang out in Oz for a bit and look around. The colors are rich and there are so many textures. The land of Oz is definitely magical. It felt real enough that you could see yourself living there but fantastical enough that you knew you weren't in Kansas anymore.
- There are scary parts! Lots of them. Not violent or gross scary. Just the classic "BOO!" With that said for those of you asking about kids I would say if the flying monkeys from the 1930's Wizard of Oz are considered scary these new monkeys may scare your pants off. So know you kids and head to the theater with caution.
- With all 3D movies there is the option of seeing it in 2D. I loved it in 3D. It felt like I was in Oz with Oscar and Finely and all the other characters. With that said I would say if you want to take some of the scare out of the "BOO!" moments this movie would be fun in 2D too. Some of the magic will be lost however. There are some very fun visual effects that POP in 3D. Even little things like puffs of smoke look really cool in 3D.
- My favorite characters were China Girl and Finely. They were so cute! I would argue that the heart of the story lies with these two characters. Their trust and love of Oscar (our main character) make us care about Oscar. They give Oz the Great and Powerful it's emotional engine.
- Oscar is kind of an unforgivable jerk. Even he thinks so. With that said it is interesting to be in the audience and distrust him as much as the characters. His behavior keeps you guessing from the beginning to the end.
- The real main character are the people of Oz. Their combined hopes and dreams are what the story is really centered on. Even though we follow Oscar the people of Oz are the ones who grow and change and learn. I was rooting for the land of Oz as a whole. Not Oscar. I wanted the people of Oz to defeat the witch and reclaim their land.
- I wish the witches were more layered in their personalities. (Forgive me for going film student in 3, 2, 1) Each witch seemed like a metaphor for female archetypes. The girl you marry, the girl you spend the night with and the girl who wants to ruin your life. (I won't specify who is who.) Because of that we don't get to see them use their powers unless they use them on Oscar or in small battles with each other. But I will say archetype or no these women were gorgeous and fun to watch. Even though they were archetypes they had a strength about them that made you want more. Mila Kunis especially did an incredible job.
- Oz the Great and Powerful is what a friend of mine calls "a cheesy good time". It's light hearted and wacky. There aren't metaphors for politics or religion or other heavy subjects in this film. It's a road, buddy comedy with a beautiful back drop. I enjoyed watching the characters interact and learn about each other (and a little about themselves along the way). I found myself laughing a lot of times while watching. Especially when China Girl and Finely were on the screen. I found that because I didn't over think the movie and I just sat back and watched I had a lot of fun. I think you will enjoy it too!