This story is based on L. Frank Baum’s Oz novels. It’s the prequel to the “Wonderful Wizard of Oz” and is set 20 years BEFORE the story that we all know and love.
What’s the story? (according to: http://www.commonsensemedia.org/movie-reviews/oz-the-great-and-powerful)
OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL opens in the familiar black-and-white landscape of early 1900s Kansas. Oscar Diggs (James Franco), a charming magician nicknamed Oz, charms a pretty country girl with an obviously fake story about his grandma’s music box. During his show, a young girl in a wheelchair (Joey King) asks him to make her walk, but he demurs and has to stop the show in relative disgrace — until he sees the one local girl he cares about, Annie (Michelle Williams). When a fellow carnie comes after Oz for flirting with his girl, Oz escapes in a hot air balloon that flies directly into a twister and then crash lands in … somewhere that’s definitely not Kansas. Confused by his colorful surroundings, Oz meets the beautiful Theodora (Mila Kunis), a young witch who explains that he must be the prophesied Wizard of Oz sent to deliver the kingdom from the evil witch. Theodora’s older sister, the powerful Evanora (Rachel Weisz), promises Oz the throne if he kills Glinda and destroys her wand, but once he meets Glinda (Williams), it’s clear that someone’s story isn’t quite right. With an adorable monkey Finley (voiced by Zach Braff) and a brave little China Girl (King) by his side, Oz must decide whether he’s just a con man magician or if he can truly be the Wizard of Oz.
Is it a good movie for kids? I personally think so. My husband and I sat in a movie theater that was 90% children, mostly 7 years old and up. There are very dark images and sometimes a little scary but I watched the kids surrounding us and they seemed non phased or afraid. Maybe it speaks to the society we live in? IDK. I WOULD bring my small children. I didn’t find it any more scary that the original Wizard of Oz.
Did we like it? I’d give it a two thumbs up for sure. I was prepared to hate it. I’d heard good and bad but I wasn’t prepared for how MUCH I’d love it. I completely got lost in the beauty and the story. I didn’t want to leave when the movie was over. I don’t usually see movies (especially in the theater) twice, but I’ll be bringing my daughter to this one.
Oh I HIGHLY recommend seeing this in IMAX or 3D! In fact, I can’t imagine NOT seeing it this way. It reminded me of the beauty of Avatar. You just have to experience it in 3D.
My favorite characters were Glinda, played by Michelle Williams. She’s PERFECT and I can’t imagine anyone else playing Glinda. I fell in LOVE with the little China Doll, voice of Joey King and Finley, the monkey, voice of Zach Braff, had me in stitches!
What struck me most is how I was transported back in time, back to a day when I was able to laugh and be amazed, freely. Back to when I was a child. I was in complete AWE, just like the other children sitting around me.
PLEASE go see this!