On a whim, this was surely a study of what exactly Hollywood can do with the Oz book and how much anyone would like to hear the tale of the wizard.
Well, obviously fans and little ones who probably don't even know what an "Oz" is enjoyed the movie with Box office numbers shooting through the roof this past weekend. It was especially enjoyable in 3-D with all the vibrant colors and odd objects flickering through the screen.
James Franco was an acceptable second choice for the part of Oz with his Cheshire cat-like grin and genuine smile eye crinkles. Loving Mila Kunis (and rumors of her future marriage) as the bad witch, she seems to play those devilish parts very well. With her role in Black Swan and talk of her in Fifty Shades of Grey, she fits the seductive, crazy siren satin gloves perfectly. And her transformation was acceptable and believable, if not a bit humorous. Zack Braff as the flying monkey was a nice comedic placement but slightly humiliating for such a great actor.
The film adapted as much of the original movie as possible after going through the chopping block of lawyers and red tape. The opium poppies still surround Emerald City. Many of the characters are still the same, including a brief song and dance from the munchkins. These townspeople were of many races and colors. But the Lollipop Guild was missing and the strange song that they sing. Perhaps they never made it or were cut out for legal reasons. Regardless, it was an after thought that they were missing.
This is a nice accent for Broadway's "Wicked," which tells the tale of the wicked witch (they touch upon this theory a bit but it is slightly unbelievable). For a way lesser price and hassle, Oz offers a nice, cozy and slightly trippy alternative.
And it's rated PG for the whole family to enjoy (and not leave the little ones with nightmares!)