21. Mulan: A-
22. The Lovely Bones: B
23. The Initiation of Sarah: D
24. Jack the Giant Slayer: C+
25. Oz the Great and Powerful: B+
Saw two films from two directors whose work I generally enjoy, got mixed results this weekend.
Jack the Giant Slayer:
from director Bryan Singer and starring Ewan McGregor, Nicholas Hoult(XM:FC,Warm Bodies), Ian McShane and Stanley Tucci with a twist on the classic fairy tale of Jack and the Beanstalk. My opinion on this, I admit, is largely due to not being a fan of what was likely the intended demographic's sense of humor. The Giants are given rather tween-ish types of behavior where picking your nose, eating what you find, farting, scratching & smelling and other hygiene esque bits of middle school humor would rule. I can't say I expected that going in but soon came to that realization. I wasn't expecting the darkness of Hansel & Gretel Witch Hunters
either though. The pacing felt fine and the romance didn't feel rushed or cheap. The CGI on the Giants didn't fully sell me either. I felt when focusing on Giant at a time the f/x felt sharper than when we saw an assembled group. Which is odd cause a grouped shot of Cybertronian Robots felt more real. While I didn't predict the exact sequence the ending is a bit predictable and most should see where it's headed by the midpoint of the film. I'd say a solid renter at least.
Oz the Great and Powerful:
by director Sam Rami and starring James Franco as Oz, Michelle Williams as Glinda, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz and Zach Braff about this prequel to the classic Wizard of Oz film/book. The visuals were top notch accompanied by Danny Elfman's score. It paid great homage by starting the film in b&w before becoming color once we reached OZ. It seems Richard 007 and I felt similar about Franco and Kunis. I was buying into Kunis' character right up until...the second act...is all I'll say. I kept trying to figure out if Franco's Oz was just a conman or if he had that heart of gold that Glinda insisted was there. I just couldn't decide if I wanted to like him and maybe that was indeed intentional. As a conman you are about misdirection so during the film it occurred to me that perhaps that was part of the characterization? Over thinking it? The fun of the heroics at the end is why I feel that perhaps I didn't over think it, really liked the ending. Williams and Weisz were also both really good in their roles. I think the unsung hero and scene stealer of the film is Finley(voiced by Braff) the flying monkey sidekick. The f/x were just solid enough that what my logic sided brain was fighting with a monkey that has wings the emotional character of his portrayal over rode that.
There is just enough gap imo from where this ends that perhaps one could do another tale in OZ before Dorothy arrives.