In show business, like all business, very often you spend money to make money. Director
This is an uneven but agreeably managed blockbuster, better than the last one (
Raimi's just enough of an oddball, franchise-friendly (from his three
The movie's weaknesses and strengths are captured by
Is "Oz the Great and Powerful" a prequel to the Oz we know best from the movies,
Mila Kunis, in shiny black riding trou, plays Theodora, who falls instantly for the wizard sent, she believes, to save her kingdom. Weisz, the one with the penchant for impromptu electric shocks, is Evanora, Ms. Trouble.
As a series of sights, which movies like these are, "Oz the Great and Powerful" is more like "Oz the Digital and Relentless." Certainly this is true in its final half-hour, which seemed to me to be all explosions. The script comes from Mitchell Kapner, who concocted the story, and David Lindsay-Abaire, hired on to bring some style and a few jokes. I laughed a few times, mostly at Braff's voice work for the animated monkey with the goo-goo eyes.
I suspect there's just enough heart in this sleek Tin Man of a project to connect with an audience. Preteens, however, may freak out whenever Theodora's simian minions reappear, fangs at the ready. It's best to consider "Oz the Great and Powerful" as the bombastic 21st-century prelude to the 20th-century "Oz" we know. It's also the cinematic horse that crossed the finish line ahead of the Broadway musical "