Saturday, April 6, 2013

Oz: The Great and Powerful

Real quick... 

Another live-action/CGI hybrid of a Disney produced family-adventure film, this time directed by the ever-versatile Sam Raimi (from Evil Dead to A Simple Plan to Spider-Man). It's several notches above Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland which felt lifeless at times, but as opposed to say The Avengers, this film is still lacking "blockbuster-depth". That said, Oz: The Great and Powerful is a lot of fun. There are many winks to Victor Fleming's 1939 classic (black and white opening, singing munchkins, a cowardly lion, "my pretty"), but is there a certain dumbing down in the eyes of a "mature" audience when it comes to making this type of family film?

Dumbing and mature are really relative terms that I'm just using to make a generalization. Just because a movie is made for kids versus adults versus a complete family doesn't invalidate the work. I can only talk about it from how I saw it, which summed up would be a fun film, but certain aspects feel one-note or even bland. For such a great cast (compromised of actors that look to be committed and enjoying themselves), the characters they portray are somewhat simple even as they go through an arc of change and adjustment. Then again, I couldn't be bothered much by that. I was enjoying the action and thrills and admittedly the barrage of visual effects to be bothered too much by less-than-strong development.

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