Rating : 7/10
Release Date : 8th March, 2013
Time : 130 minutes
Director : Sam Raimi; Writers : Mitchell Kapner, David Lindsay-Abaire based on the book by L Frank Baum; Music : Various Artists
Starring : James Franco, Michelle Williams, Rachel Weisz, Mila Kunis, Tony Cox, Zach Braff, Bill Cobbs, Joey King
Disclaimer : I haven’t read Wizard of Oz or seen any of the earlier films
This movie is nice. The special effects, visuals are very good. The story works, to an extent. Like all films about things like magic, witches, another realm, it depends on how easily you are able to suspend logic, disbelief and immerse yourself in the world of the film. It works to the extent it does because of the scale of the film and the performances of its lead actors…
James Franco is a two-bit hustler, conman, Casanova, traveling with a small time circus in Kansas as a magician, with the stage name Oz. He has a signature move to bed the ladies, involving a cheap music box. While escaping from an enraged husband in a hot air balloon, he is sucked into a twister and reaches the magical world of Oz.
The people of Oz are, as per a prophecy, waiting for a powerful wizard, bearing the name of their land to free them from the clutches of a powerful witch who murdered their beloved king. Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz and Michelle Williams play the witches. Each with their own characteristics, traits. Each looking lovely, stunning, alluring. And everything is clearly not what it seems.
James Franco gets his role spot on, looking every inch the hustler, looking for a shortcut to wealth, fame, greatness. With a roving eye for the pretty ones. Attracted a bit to each of the three lovely witches. And looking for the first opportunity to run, when the going gets tough.
There is nothing in the story that you haven’t seen before. It’s a light-hearted fable, running along fairly predictable lines. It runs primarily on star power. The allure of watching James Franco woo the likes of Mila, Rachel and Michelle taking the movie to another, higher level