Not such a wizard prequel

Not such a wizard prequel


Oz Movie_L
Photo: New York Times
Oz: The Great And Powerful, Disney's prequel to The Wizard of Oz, explains how the great wizard rose to the throne long before Dorothy's house flew over the rainbow and she skipped down the yellow brick road to ask him a favour.

The ruler of the Emerald City is no sorcerer. He is an unpopular circus magician called Oscar Diggs (James Franco), whisked off to wonderland by a tornado.

In Oz, the charlatan's fortunes change. Theodora (Mila Kunis) and her sister Evanora (Rachel Weisz) hail him as the saviour who could recapture their homeland from the supposedly wicked Glinda (Michelle Williams). If he could kill their enemy, he would become a very rich king.

The twist comes when he journeys to the Dark Forest to slit Glinda's throat, only to find that she was as virtuous as an angel and the real threat was at home.

There are nods to scenes and characters from the original, and some dazzling effects, but the new Oz falls short in charm, innocence, plot - and certainly in songs.

Director Sam Raimi tries to honour the solid-gold classic in spirit and style, but this just doesn't live up to expectations.

YP Rating: 2/5

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