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Science Fiction & Fantasy Farscape, Babylon 5, Star Wars, Firefly, vampires, genre books and film.

View Poll Results: Grade the movie...
A+ 2 4.76%
A 5 11.90%
A- 9 21.43%
B+ 11 26.19%
B 6 14.29%
B- 4 9.52%
C+ 1 2.38%
C 0 0%
C- 1 2.38%
D+ 1 2.38%
D 1 2.38%
D- 1 2.38%
F 0 0%
Voters: 42. You may not vote on this poll

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Old March 11 2013, 05:44 AM   #16
Anwar
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

Was it really explained why the Strongman at the Circus wanted to kill Oz so much?
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Old March 11 2013, 06:43 AM   #17
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

Oz had been spending time with his wife.
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Old March 11 2013, 08:06 AM   #18
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

Oh, THAT'S who the "Country Girl" was?
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Old March 11 2013, 01:45 PM   #19
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

PS The most disconcerting thing was a hot air balloon that didn't have any hot air source. It was amazing how hard it made it to suspend disbelief. OZ is supposed to be magic, but hot air balloons, not so much.

The Gary Westfahl review at Locus online was predictably negative. But unpredictably enough, for once he actually had an interesting point. Namely, why have "real world" analogues to the OZ characters if the Wizard is never going to wake up from the dream? Of course, he complains about the "if you only believe" theme being pounded into the viewer. Unfortunately for him, that means the Oz characters are just as real as the Kansas analogues. (If you believe, that is.) Any thematic contradiction is strictly his imagination. I have no idea who Westfahl blackmails to get to review movies, he's terrible at it. He complained about a message being being hammered away, then couldn't remember it long enough to interpret the movie!
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Old March 11 2013, 02:00 PM   #20
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

Emh wrote: View Post
I enjoyed this film but not quite as much as I would've liked. The special effects were very good although there were times the characters didn't blend well with them (most notably Oscar's river trip when he first arrives in Oz). That being said, the China Girl was rendered so beautifully that I thought she was real and Joey King's performance took it a step further.
Agreed. The 3-D effects were the best we've seen since Avatar IMO and without Franco and the effects the film would have been at best a C-.

I gave it a B- because of the effects but the film was filled with cliches and more of a children's film that I had expected.

Also, I'm sure all of us sci-fi fans noticed the incredible rip off from the Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith. First the evil witch uses green lightning to fight the good witch [seem familiar?] but even steals the line from Wars, '...I've been waiting a long time for this.'

If Disney didn't now own the rights to Star Wars and under different circumstances, I'd think the whole ending battle scene between good and evil would be outright plagiarism from the last Star Wars film. She even uses her light saber err wand to fight off the green lightning.

Edited to add: And this nitpick isn't only directed at Disney per se but are all big budget films written with parts today also with a theme park ride in mind? There are several scenes in the Oz where it's obvious to even a casual observer that they're hoping to build a theme park ride around the scene. In Oz for example the trip down the river rapids comes to mind.

Last edited by DarthTom; March 11 2013 at 02:43 PM.
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Old March 11 2013, 02:56 PM   #21
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

The 3D itself has earned a rare perfect score from Cinema Blend, its first such rating since Hugo.

Also, B.O. returns were quite strong ($80m). It seems this weekend's just slightly snarky AV Club headline "Oz The Great And Powerful getting a sequel, so you can find out what happens next" will come true. Munchkin-shaped xenomorphs, here we come!

... Eh? What? How do you mean, "No?"


Samuel Walters wrote: View Post
If you decide not to see this based on the reviews of critics, well, then, you sir are ... missing out on the opportunity for the 3D Weisz.
Aye. Well... one can't have everything, I suppose.
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Old March 11 2013, 08:17 PM   #22
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

... And I guess these aren't quite so funny now that the movie's a hit, and definitely will get a sequel, but when the review hit last Thursday, the AV Club commentariat produced some golden comic post-release headlines:
OZ FLAWS DRAWS BLAHS

"WE'RE OFF TO FLEE THE WIZARD": AUDIENCES ARE ALREADY OVER RAIMI'S RAINBOW REDUX

AUDS ZZZZ OZ

YOU WEREN'T THERE, AND YOU WEREN'T THERE: OZ'S AUDIENCES GIVE MOVIE THE SLIP-PER

NEW OZ FAILS TO SYNC WITH PINK FLOYD, OR AUDIENCES

OZ THE GWEAT AND TEWWIBLE

AUDIENCES TAKE WHIZZ ON RAIMI'S TAKE ON WIZ

NEW OZ FILM DOES POORLY AT BOX OFFICE

SOMEWHERE OVER THE RAINBOW THERE IS A GOOD MOVIE, BUT NOT THIS ONE

FRANCO BOMBS, GUERNICA SPARED
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Old March 11 2013, 08:38 PM   #23
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

Audiences often ignore the critics when it comes to films like Oz - or other fantasy films. Disney's John Carter did well opening weekend but it fizzled fast when word of mouth said the movie sucked and reaffirmed what the critics said.

We shall see how long Oz holds at the box office.
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Old March 11 2013, 10:18 PM   #24
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

DarthTom wrote: View Post
Audiences often ignore the critics when it comes to films like Oz - or other fantasy films. Disney's John Carter did well opening weekend but it fizzled fast when word of mouth said the movie sucked and reaffirmed what the critics said.

We shall see how long Oz holds at the box office.
From boxofficemojo:
On Friday, at least, John Carter failed to overcome an awful marketing effort and barely took first place ahead of last weekend's winner The Lorax. Silent House and A Thousand Words were also disappointing, and it looks like this could be the first weekend of 2012 to see a year-over-year decline.

Disney's mega-budget sci-fi spectacle John Carter opened to a middling $9.82 million on Friday, which is lower than almost all recent comparable movies. Its debut was a mere fraction of past March hits 300 ($28.1 million) and Watchmen ($24.5 million), and was also notably off from mid-range genre movies Battle: Los Angeles ($13.4 million) and 10,000 B.C. ($12.5 million). Compared to recent big-budget Disney movies, John Carter's opening was about half that of Tron Legacy ($17.5 million) and even a tad lower than Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time ($10.2 million).

Since it's only one day in, and there are rumblings of strong international numbers coming out of Russia and East Asia, it's premature to write John Carter's obituary. However, it now looks poised to finish the weekend with less than $30 million, which is a truly terrible start for any heavily-marketed sci-fi movie, much less one that cost a reported $250 million.
(link: http://boxofficemojo.com/news/?id=3390&p=.htm)

No, the word of mouth was irrelevant. Critics were extremely negative, but they almost all reviewed the budget and the marketing campaign instead of the movie.

I gather the critics are fairly negative, at best lukewarm, about Oz, but the most magical things about this movie are the production design and the 3D FX. I've noticed that most critics don't notice much about the movies. Oh, they notice the dialogue and the stars' performances but then everybody does that. So far as using their collectively vast viewing experience, well, some film school cliches about the director seems to be all most of them bring to the table. Insofar as they are consciously interested in film as "Art," most seem to be stuck in a conservative PC mode. Oz is much too indifferent to reactionary notions about the darkness of human nature to thrill them.
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Old March 11 2013, 10:27 PM   #25
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

DarthTom wrote: View Post
Also, I'm sure all of us sci-fi fans noticed the incredible rip off from the Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith. First the evil witch uses green lightning to fight the good witch [seem familiar?] but even steals the line from Wars, '...I've been waiting a long time for this.'

If Disney didn't now own the rights to Star Wars and under different circumstances, I'd think the whole ending battle scene between good and evil would be outright plagiarism from the last Star Wars film. She even uses her light saber err wand to fight off the green lightning.
Wut?
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Old March 12 2013, 12:15 AM   #26
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

In my opinion, "Oz, the Great and Powerful" is infinitely better than most people (well. critics) seem to give it credit for. While the trailers made it look like another soulless cg spectacle in the vein of Burton's "Alice in Wonderland", Raimi manages to instill his film with a genuine sense of wonder and a lot of personal touches. It's refreshing that the movie takes its (very well acted) characters' emotional lives seriously and treats them without the least bit of cynicism, all while retaining a great sense of humor and whimsy, and never neglecting the visual spectacle and the fun of it all.


The movie left me with a smile on my face and a tear in my eye, which is a lot more than I would have expected from a big Disney family event movie these days.


Should definitely be seen on a big screen and in 3D!
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Old March 12 2013, 12:27 AM   #27
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

B+

Passible, in spite of the presence of James Franco, who has got to be blackmailing somebody to keep getting work because it can't possibly be due to his skill as an actor. If he and January Jones were ever made the male and female leads in a rom-com you'd have to put audiences on suicide watch because nobody would be able to stand all the toneless, emotionless droning.

And is it a bad thing that I found Mila Kunis more tolerable after she ate the apple?

Whatever. The sets were nice, and the 3D didn't suck...
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Old March 12 2013, 02:29 AM   #28
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

Wicked the Musical is so much better.

Go take your spouse to wicked.

This movie is in the past.

Mila in trousers was wrong.

(Modern dresses are mostly stupid, but the old timely stuff is usually a (painful) work of art.)

Oz should have thought she was naked or a lesbian, if he knew what a lesbian was, but definitely a prostitute, since he wouldn't know the difference between girl trousers and bloomers.

Did they say variations of "I'm not the wizard you want but I'm the wizard you need" at least 5 or 6 times?

So blunt.

Evanora got her makeup taken away and that's it? She hadn't been magically castrated at all, she was still just as powerful, only so vainly embarrassed by her appeance that she scampered to live with the Munchkins until a house fell on her rather than cast off some more green lightning and win the day?

(Womans lib and all. Too ugly to be outside. Talk about not owning yourself. If they were sisters or colegues, surely they all knew Evanora was 50 years older than the rest of them?)

Tell you a secret Girl, once you win, you define beauty just like Kim Jong-Il defined the apex of world HIEGHT and intellect from his throne in North Korea.

"Sigh"

Was Rachel wearing ruby slippers?

Oh.

Rami claims that the 1939 movie made up the slippers which weren't in the book so he didn't have to use them, so he didn't.

Meh.

I bet the old movie made up the bubbles too!

Wicked makes this look like a turd.
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Old March 12 2013, 04:02 AM   #29
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

Raimi would be correct; Baum's novel featured silver shoes; MGM changed them to ruby slippers to take advantage of the film's use of Technicolor.
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Old March 12 2013, 04:38 AM   #30
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Re: Oz the Great and Powerful - Grading & Discussion

That was never in doubt, I say "claim" because it doesn't seem like a good enough reason to exclude the slippers, in an attempt to distance his new film from the "original" (there was a silent era Wizard of Oz wasn't there?) if he's going to film the first 20 minutes in black and white.

"I don't want to" is a good reason.

"I don't want to because they weren't in the book" is less good.
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