Tag Archives: upcoming movies

Movie Review: Oz The Great and Powerful

It’s Saturday morning and we are thinking about how little we have gone to the movies this year. Luckily, Disney provided us with a new option, Oz The Great and Powerful starring James Franco and a trio of Hollywood’s finest and classiest ladies. We took advantage of a morning showing in 3D at 10:55 a.m.

Alana said that she saw The Wizard of Oz (1939)… so have I and everyone else in the world. I have also seen Return to Oz (Creepiest movie ever), The Wiz, and have read a few of the earlier books in the series, before Princess Ozma gets to comfortable on her throne. So, of course we know something about the story. Neither of us has seen Wicked, but I know all the songs thanks to my brother.

Without giving any spoilers, it was two hours that felt just about two hours long. There weren’t any scenes that were a total waste in my opinion. Everything contributed to the development of the story and the characters. It shared many similarities to the stories and changed some details without altering the story too much, with the exception of developing relationships between certain characters that we never really saw before. It has been 113 years since the first book was published so it’s not unreasonable to say that it could use some modernization. Gilbert Godfried might have fit the original Oz’s description more accurately, but James Franco created a solid character by the end of the movie.
The visual effects were sufficient and sometimes awesome, Danny Elfman brought a stellar soundtrack as per usual, and Michelle Williams provided the best performance of anyone in the film (in my opinion) as the witch that she was. There were small details that I appreciated, such as the parallels drawn between Oz’s world in Kansas and his world in Oz.

All in all, I enjoyed this film. It started very slowly but James Franco and the cast turned it around by the end. Alana was not as pleased with the film due to her lack of positive feelings for Franco. I read that Michelle Williams signed on for a sequel so I am excited to see in which direction they take L. Frank Baum’s magical series. Disney rarely fails.
On a side note, we’re looking forward to a strong movie showing in May, with back to back to back weekends of: The Great Gatsby, Iron Man 3, and Star Trek Into Darkness.

Stay hungry and fit.

Return of the…Star Wars Franchise? What?

Stunned. Couldn’t actually believe it. George Lucas sold the beloved (well, mostly) Star Wars franchise for 4 billion dollars to Disney. Wait, what? You’ll have to repeat yourself. Took about twelve news reports until the news finally soaked in. The franchise I grew up with and became obsessed with , those amazing three movies, (and then those added 3 rubbish) are continuing. Images of Mickey Mouse with lightsabers and more creations like Jar Jar keep popping up in my mind. Vader, you said it. My first thought was just…let it die. Or rather let it live on in a semi-untarnished memory. At least of the originals.

I couldn’t believe Lucas would sell out like that. Well, that isn’t true, because look at the prequels. I’m just surprised because it came out of nowhere. Disney? Hmm… Please don’t serve us another set of bad, childish movies with painful writing. Don’t do the Princess-y Disney, do the darker and more complex movies you’ve been coming out with. With a looming 2015 release date, us Star Wars fans are left to sit with endless “what if’s” and imaginations of further franchise destruction.

But wait. Finally stumbling past my shock and disappointment, some friends pointed out a few things which I tend to forget. Disney recently bought Pixar and Marvel, two of my favorite companies. And the movies that have been coming from them? Brilliant. I absolutely loved the Avengers, I bought it on Blu-Ray/DVD as soon as it was available. For some reason, the thought of ‘Disney’ just brings images of cartoony corniness–something Star Wars needs to move away from. Which was why the news was accompanied with immediate stomach-wrenching dread. But, very good example, look at movies like the Avengers, Thor, Captain America, and so forth. All movies I thoroughly enjoyed. And they came from Disney. As did Pirates. So there’s a shot. 

(what a weird picture)

This Kathleen Kennedy woman (who is taking over Lucas Films) seems like she’s got a lot to her. She’s produced tons of films which have collectively won 120 Academy Awards–that’s not a bad record. There could be something to this. However, in that article, she mentions Lucas as Yoda, something he absolutely strayed from as we all know–that is not a good sign. Still, as my dad pointed out, it could be a political move. She’s got a good record. She could make something out of it.

All I hope is that they follow the books of the Expanded Universe that so many brilliant fan-authors have created. There is such a rich universe filled with captivating stories, complex characters, and a certain depth to it. I know it’s hard to match that, because they’re books, but it’s a beautiful model to follow (well most of them…not the one where Lando had a dog–a dog, really?!). I just want Kennedy, or someone close to her, to have a deep knowledge of those books and the ability to relay them into some new movies. You could do so much. Mara Jade? Yes, please. Han and Leia’s childrenAwesome. The New Jedi Order? LET’S SEE IT! Okay, now I’ve gotten myself amped up for things that probably won’t occur. But if you’re a fan like me, you understand. Imagine if Luc Besson or Joss Whedon wrote or directed it.

“IT’S A TRAP!!!”: How The Star Wars Expanded Universe Is Going To Steal Back Into Your Heart

Overall, the dread has seeped out some and there is a dull excitement–maybe not even that. Curiosity, I suppose. Will wait on more details. How do you feel about it?