User Score
6.1

Generally favorable reviews- based on 452 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 76 out of 452
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  1. Mar 10, 2013
    7
    The wicked witch might not be so wicked, but be prepared for an epic visual triumph, that dazzles the mind and satisfies the ears with a great, albeit a bit overblown soundtrack. This might not be the Oz that you remember, but it remains fresh enough for another trip back through the yellow brick road.
  2. Mar 13, 2013
    9
    A solid prequel to the classic that is 'The Wizard of Oz', and while it might make you think twice about the original (similar to what Wicked did for me) it's certainly for the good. Heavy on CGI, perhaps, but that seems to be the way films are going these days. The actors all played their roles perfectly and I particularly liked Finley & China Girl. It's also a great storyline that reallyA solid prequel to the classic that is 'The Wizard of Oz', and while it might make you think twice about the original (similar to what Wicked did for me) it's certainly for the good. Heavy on CGI, perhaps, but that seems to be the way films are going these days. The actors all played their roles perfectly and I particularly liked Finley & China Girl. It's also a great storyline that really picks up towards the end with a great ending. Overall a film I thoroughly enjoyed Expand
  3. Mar 10, 2013
    9
    This movie worked for me. I do not understand the lukewarm reception this film gets. Possibly its that people have all seen the first one and have spent a lifetime imagining this material. What I found watching this movie is a great homage to the first film while never trying to outdo its predecessor. Some scenes fell flat but others shined like the china doll sequence. It is somewhatThis movie worked for me. I do not understand the lukewarm reception this film gets. Possibly its that people have all seen the first one and have spent a lifetime imagining this material. What I found watching this movie is a great homage to the first film while never trying to outdo its predecessor. Some scenes fell flat but others shined like the china doll sequence. It is somewhat predictable but is a great piece of work. Expand
  4. Mar 11, 2013
    8
    First off, what is with the hate on James Franco? He performed just fine! The film is actually better than it had any right to be, and in some respects, it makes the 1939 film even better. The film looks great too. The visuals look really colorful and beautiful. The clever twists at the end are just the icing on the cake
  5. Mar 12, 2013
    7
    “Oz the Great and Powerful” deals with the themes of believing and how powerful faith can be. The story handles the theme very well with clever writing and homages to the older film (keep in mind that this is a prequel to the actual story and not the 1939 classic film by MGM). Sam Raimi does a good job of directing the film. He mixes humor with the more semi-serious moments. There are“Oz the Great and Powerful” deals with the themes of believing and how powerful faith can be. The story handles the theme very well with clever writing and homages to the older film (keep in mind that this is a prequel to the actual story and not the 1939 classic film by MGM). Sam Raimi does a good job of directing the film. He mixes humor with the more semi-serious moments. There are moments of excitement that gets the blood going and legitimately scary moments that make you jump out your seat. However, the story mainly in the middle gets a bit confused on what it is about and what’s happening. Along with that, certain things feel a bit rushed particularly when Oz arrives in Oz.

    The acting and characters for the most part are decent. Oz, James Franco, is pretty much the scene stealer as one would hope from a movie titled “Oz.” Franco brings a lot of charisma and charm to the character along with being relatable. He sometime goes a bit over the top, but when he puts on his big cheesy smile almost everything is forgiven. Mila Kunis is okay in the movie at best, but half way through she become not so good. Her character feels forced and any emotion she tries to convey comes off as trying too hard. There’s a flying monkey and little porcelain girl that bring a lot of the heart to the film. They’re incredibly likable and help show off some of the humanity in Oz.

    I particularly like the visual effects. The backgrounds are well detailed and immerses the viewer into the world. There are some moments were you can tell it’s CGI and the character don’t blend well with the background, but they don’t appear very often. The musical score by Danny Elfman is effective, but not too memorable until the third act.

    Overall, “Oz the Great and Powerful” isn’t great, but it is still pretty good. The special effects are great, but have some spotty moments, the score my Elfman is solid, and James Franco’s performance steals the show. However, there are some minor story issues in the first two acts and the acting by the rest of the cast, especially Mila Kunis, leaves more to be desired. The final act of the film is spectacular though and sums up everything great about the film incredibly well. I give it an incredibly high 3.5/5, acting could use some work, but Franco and the third act make this a really good experience.
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  6. Mar 12, 2013
    7
    Oz: The Great And Powerful turns out to be a very honorable prequel to 1939's The Wizard Of Oz. The script and acting is so well written and intelligent. Not to mention it has an all-star cast including James Franco, Michelle Williams, Mila Kunis, and Rachel Weisz who are all very believable for each of their roles. But one of the biggest things that blew me away was the special effects.Oz: The Great And Powerful turns out to be a very honorable prequel to 1939's The Wizard Of Oz. The script and acting is so well written and intelligent. Not to mention it has an all-star cast including James Franco, Michelle Williams, Mila Kunis, and Rachel Weisz who are all very believable for each of their roles. But one of the biggest things that blew me away was the special effects. Very well made movie. My rating is 3/4 stars. Expand
  7. Mar 9, 2013
    8
    This film is a pleasant surprise. Unlike other fairy tale movies like both Snow White movies and Alice in Wonderland, this film has characters you care about. James Franco does a solid job as Oz, but it's the supporting cast, (like Zach Braff's Finley the monkey and a little adorable china doll) that makes this film an enjoyable ride.
  8. Mar 8, 2013
    8
    It's a visual treat. The Special Effects are AMAZING!! Followed by great performances esp by Rachel Weisz. It is funny occasionally and the monkey character 'Finley' voiced by Zack Braff is Fantastic. Overall a Fun Movie. The script could have been sharper.
  9. Mar 10, 2013
    7
    Genuinely Funny. Characters are good and the annoying ones are supposed to be annoying. Old fashion looking purposefully low quality effects are awesome. Very good cgi visuals it is very good looking. Entire black and white intro is awesome.
  10. Mar 13, 2013
    10
    James Franco is the best actor I've ever seen. True Talent!!! He deserves much more attention because he is great!
  11. Mar 10, 2013
    10
    Enjoined every minute of the movie, from the visuals to the characters. A nice fairytale that does exactly what it should do. Do not listen to the haters.
  12. Mar 9, 2013
    8
    A fun movie to go out and see with friends. Visually, it's amazing. I wish they executed a few parts of the story better than they did, but all in all, it's great fun
  13. Mar 10, 2013
    10
    Went and saw OZ The Great and Powerful today in 3D and it was SPECTACULAR!! It was fantastic!! VERY very worth seeing!! Especially on a big screen and especially in 3D. Very well done, well written, spectacular effects, good action, good story, good humor, good adventure Definite must see and certainly a must-own!
  14. Mar 13, 2013
    10
    It's a masterpiece. The "professional" reviewers are again, completely out to lunch. A beautifully realized vision of the land of Oz, and perhaps the best prequel ever made, and no I am not related to Sam Raimi.
  15. Mar 9, 2013
    8
    As whimsical as it is beguiling, "Oz The Great And Powerful" overwhelmingly surmounts its potential; thanks to Sam Raimi's perfectly conceived directorial imagination.
  16. Mar 9, 2013
    8
    Oz the Great and Powerful is a mixed bag. It's very big, extremely colorful, and full of unique characters. I took the family to see it and found that it was perfectly suited for almost all ages. There was no violence or blood and only a couple of 3D staged frrights, mostly in the form of flying monkeys (which was the scariest part of the the original WOO). The characters were notOz the Great and Powerful is a mixed bag. It's very big, extremely colorful, and full of unique characters. I took the family to see it and found that it was perfectly suited for almost all ages. There was no violence or blood and only a couple of 3D staged frrights, mostly in the form of flying monkeys (which was the scariest part of the the original WOO). The characters were not terribly well developed but everyone had their place and it was fun to watch them chew up the scenery. The effects were a mixed bag with some of it being very good but others (mostly long shots of characters running) looking obviously CGI. The story itself plays right along the lines of WOO with character failings and encounters being resolved or re-met in Oz. The CGI characters looked terrific and the China Doll was absolutely precious. It was very easy to forget you were looking at CGI. The ending was very satisfying and my favorite part of the movie. I think the only place it missed was revealing an important character note very early. The original WOO held onto a mystery until the very end and I expected that here. Aside from that, the various plot points tied up nicely and we left the theater smiling.

    Oz the Great and Powerful isn't a masterpiece, but it's a very, very good film. Based on other reviews, I really should have seen the 3D version. Go see this today.
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  17. Mar 10, 2013
    9
    This review contains spoilers. To me, the most important test of a movie is whether or not it was entertaining. I was thoroughly entertained. It was worth the price of the ticket. The special effects were awesome. And I could see Mila Kunis evolving into the Wicked Witch we've all come to know and love (hate Those that compare it to the first movie,to its detriment, are comparing apples and oranges. This was not a re-make nor was it intended to be. It was a good story in its own right, and I enjoyed it. As did my 8-yr old granddaughter.While she's seen "The Wizard of Oz", it hasn't had the imprint on her that those of us from another generation share, and she's still talking about it. I think Disney did a great job overall. Collapse
  18. Mar 12, 2013
    9
    It is a daunting task to follow anything that has greatness attached to it. When "The Wizard of OZ" came out in 1939, it was anything but a success but with the passage of time became a film classic and is now imprinted on our collective psyche. The marvel of "Oz Great and Powerful" is it's production design, from the opening titles, from Kansas to Oz itself is a technical wonder. WhileIt is a daunting task to follow anything that has greatness attached to it. When "The Wizard of OZ" came out in 1939, it was anything but a success but with the passage of time became a film classic and is now imprinted on our collective psyche. The marvel of "Oz Great and Powerful" is it's production design, from the opening titles, from Kansas to Oz itself is a technical wonder. While the temptation is to draw from all Oz before it, I do believe it succeeds on it's own and will become an enduring film that we will want to see again and again. Expand
  19. Mar 8, 2013
    8
    This film was fantastic. The sets perfectly evoked the 1930s original. James Franco was excellent. It even manages a black white start :)

    I have never disagreed so much with the critics about a film ever.

    Go and enjoy, pure entertainment.
  20. Mar 9, 2013
    10
    MGM did Disney a great service by wanting way too much for the use of certain similarities from the original movie and I'll explain why. By not allowing the likeness of the major characters in the original it made the Oz universe more vast, something I was disappointed with the Star Wars prequels. In Star Wars they wrap everything up nice and neat leaving no room for the imagination.MGM did Disney a great service by wanting way too much for the use of certain similarities from the original movie and I'll explain why. By not allowing the likeness of the major characters in the original it made the Oz universe more vast, something I was disappointed with the Star Wars prequels. In Star Wars they wrap everything up nice and neat leaving no room for the imagination. This is one movie that I believe is being beaten up for all the wrong reasons. If you go into this and let yourself be engaged with movie, you will find yourself in a magical world that makes over two hours seem like 45 minutes. My family loved this movie and as it was done the sold out audience erupted in applause. I personally thought it was as good as the Avengers. I've grown up with Sam Rami movies since "The Evil Dead" and I love his film making. All I can say is that I hope this is a huge success so that there can be a sequel and we get to find out how the ruby slippers come about. Great fun and a great movie. Expand
  21. Mar 8, 2013
    10
    This is a awesome movie, do not believe in haters from critic, these people don't like popular movies. Oz is a movie to the people, to Disney fans around the world.
  22. Mar 8, 2013
    9
    It's been a long time since I've seen anything this visually brilliant. Oz The great and the Powerful is magic for any child's eyes! This remake of the classic is very well done, other than its gazing fashion which is brought up a lot in this film which is good for a remake. I think every Disney fan won't be disappointed by Sam Raimi 's elegant cinematic experience.
  23. Apr 25, 2013
    8
    This movie is not half bad. James Franco was a good pick for the role. If they had gone with Robert Downey, his persona would have made all the interactions seem too dirty while Franco's silly innocence keeps it light. Great effects and some good humor are also what make it worth the watch.
  24. Mar 9, 2013
    7
    If you are expecting this intense, exciting adventure, you will be disappointed. If you are expecting a hilarious comedy, you will also be disappointed, just as you would be if you were expecting this emotional powerhouse, or a thought provoking masterpiece. What this is is a very mild version of each of those, which by no means should be taken as a serious movie. This is actually prettyIf you are expecting this intense, exciting adventure, you will be disappointed. If you are expecting a hilarious comedy, you will also be disappointed, just as you would be if you were expecting this emotional powerhouse, or a thought provoking masterpiece. What this is is a very mild version of each of those, which by no means should be taken as a serious movie. This is actually pretty similar to recent story adaptations such as Snow White and the Huntsman and Alice in Wonderland, neither of which I really liked. It's not very original at all, it drags in spots, but it has a few laughs, some mildly emotional moments, and a small bit of exciting action. What separates this from those movies is James Franco's performance. He is so intentionally over the top, that it gives the impression that the movie doesn't take itself too seriously. James might be the only person involved in the whole movie who realizes how hokey and corny it is, but he owns it, and that makes it enjoyable. He basically hams up the screen as if he is making a mockery of the script. The movie would be pretty terrible if this quest to defeat the witch were taken as seriously as the script seems to take it, but James has fun with it, and doesn't take the movie seriously at all, which becomes contagious. I guess you have to go into it with that same attitude for it to work. It works for little kids anyway, but James makes it work for adults too. Of course it looks great, and there are some genuinely good moments too, like how they reveal the witches. I do like the references to the original movie, like how it starts out in black and white (basically things they could get away with without having the rights). Kids will like it, and adults will like it if you like the original, and you go into it taking it very lightly. Expand
  25. Mar 8, 2013
    8
    I was pleasantly surprised by this movie. Once again the critics miss the point. Oz is a great popcorn movie, with beautiful scenery, believable acting, wonderful special effects, and appropriate amounts of comic relief. Most importantly the writers do a great job tying the prequel into the original movie. The movie may not win any awards but it will likely win over movie goers.
  26. Mar 8, 2013
    7
    There are times it is magical and reminds you why you love the original. Then there are other times it is too campy and too corny. Franco may have been miscast but he does a fine job in the role and Zach Braff provides a lot of laughs as his monkey sidekick. It's not awful just don't be expecting art.
  27. Mar 9, 2013
    7
    I was undecided about this one for a while; it gets dark for it's demographic. Like Jack the Giant Slayer, I wasn't sure whether it was meant for children or adults. Unlike Jack the Giant Slayer, this one made use of its amazing graphics, instead of being an excuse for them.
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  28. Mar 9, 2013
    9
    There seem to be a lot of cynics out there who wish to view this as a simple cashgrab by Disney. While it may have some of that, the film on a whole does not suffer it. It is a most enjoyable experience in a way that the Star Wars prequel trilogy failed to achieve it does not try to live up to or surpass the greatness of the original. Rather, it tries and succeeds at using some of theThere seem to be a lot of cynics out there who wish to view this as a simple cashgrab by Disney. While it may have some of that, the film on a whole does not suffer it. It is a most enjoyable experience in a way that the Star Wars prequel trilogy failed to achieve it does not try to live up to or surpass the greatness of the original. Rather, it tries and succeeds at using some of the magic of yesterday to tell a story for today's audience. An outright remake would have drawn poorly comparisons from the get-go, while this you could still walk into open-minded (if you don't listen to critics like Mr. Morgenstern who was just waiting for the opportunity to use a turn of the phrase in the Tin Man and make us belief that his opinions should matter. If you are getting your movie watching advice from WSJ instead of your real life friends and family first, and the actual public second well, there is no hope for you anyway). This walked a fine balance and told a suspenseful-enough tale that reminds you that magic does not have to die in your childhood. Expand
  29. Mar 30, 2013
    8
    "Oz the Great and Powerful" is a beautifully executed callback to the original 1939 film. The most important thing to remember is that this is a prequel to "The Wizard of Oz." There is just enough Oz and enough differences to make this a successful film. Fantastic visuals, clever sleight of hand, and a talented cast makes this a joyful experience for people of all ages.
  30. Apr 1, 2013
    10
    that was amazing. I loved the films like Alice in Wonderland and this movie was kind of like that, i thought the cast was good and the 3D fit in well and it was very entertainig. Overall 10/10 i would reccomend this to anyone who liked Alice in Wonderland
  31. Apr 1, 2013
    8
    The movie was very good, I don't understand why it is so underrated. James Franco was amazing but not many people like him in general which makes their review biased. For some reason he's quite underrated. For me, Franco is one of the best actors of our generation.
    Anyway, the movie was very entertaining. It is a movie for all ages, so some parts of it might seem stupid to people over the
    The movie was very good, I don't understand why it is so underrated. James Franco was amazing but not many people like him in general which makes their review biased. For some reason he's quite underrated. For me, Franco is one of the best actors of our generation.
    Anyway, the movie was very entertaining. It is a movie for all ages, so some parts of it might seem stupid to people over the age of 16. At times the script was bad, but overall the movie is great. It's a must see for people who like fairy tales or just want to see something refreshing that doesn't need to be taken seriously.
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  32. Apr 5, 2013
    10
    This movie changed my life. I feel liberated, a new (wo)man, as if I can go out and literally carpe diem James Francos performance was nothing less than Oscar worthy, Golden Glove worthy, Grammy worthy, hell it should be made into a Broadway musical so that he can win a Tony for it as well! The acting in this movie was, as i previously stated, life changing. I repeated myself just to getThis movie changed my life. I feel liberated, a new (wo)man, as if I can go out and literally carpe diem James Francos performance was nothing less than Oscar worthy, Golden Glove worthy, Grammy worthy, hell it should be made into a Broadway musical so that he can win a Tony for it as well! The acting in this movie was, as i previously stated, life changing. I repeated myself just to get my point across. Seriously, life changing. Life changing. Life changing. Life changing. So, metacrtic lurker, you may be asking why so life changing? Go see the film and you shall see the face of God, nay Oz.
    xoxo
    Gossip Girl
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  33. Apr 6, 2013
    8
    Admittedly I am an Oz aficionado, a family movie fan, and a fan of 3D pseudo-psychedelia. That said, I found Oz in #D to be an interesting and humorous adventure. Raimey does telegraph many of the plot twists and subtlety is not one of the strong points, but as homage, as 21st century re-visioning of the OZ of 1900, as #D extravaganza, the movie was enchanting
  34. Apr 25, 2013
    10
    Fantastic, a very enjoyable movie. The movie graphics are amazing, the colours are great and the characters are brilliant. A very good plot and good story line, very exciting and dazzling, a must see!
  35. Apr 27, 2013
    9
    Oz is in my opinion, a masterpiece. This movie is a prequel to the original book and brings with it all the wonder and whimsy of the Land of Oz. The CGi isn't photorealistic, but this lends to that whimsy. It indicates that this world is something different and fantastical. The "shallow" story is the result of this being a world for children. It isn't supposed to be dark or gritty, it isOz is in my opinion, a masterpiece. This movie is a prequel to the original book and brings with it all the wonder and whimsy of the Land of Oz. The CGi isn't photorealistic, but this lends to that whimsy. It indicates that this world is something different and fantastical. The "shallow" story is the result of this being a world for children. It isn't supposed to be dark or gritty, it is supposed to be clean and innocent.

    All I can say is watch this movie while keeping in mind the source material.
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  36. GFC
    Apr 29, 2013
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I came here and I was shocked on how low the ratings were. When I watched the movie I enjoyed it alot! The movie surprised me with its great visuals and great ideas. The only time when I thought the visuals were bad was from the cartoony green witch. Trying to make an ugly witch out of a normal woman just does not work for me. Expand
  37. Jun 4, 2013
    7
    "To say "OZ" is powerful is pushing its boundaries a little bit, but great is a fair assessment. Oz is a visually stunning spectacle with enough dazzle and humor to make up for its overbearing run-time, middling performances and modest conclusion." B
  38. Jul 29, 2013
    8
    No matter what age bracket you are in, you'll enjoy it. It doesn't have the best action or storyline but the casting and character performances was spot on.
  39. Aug 18, 2013
    8
    Surprisingly dazzling with great special effect and some charming characters. As someone who didn't expect much going into this, and as someone who thought a prequel to the legendary "The Wizard of Oz" was pointless, I must say I was impressed with how much I enjoyed the movie. It in no way lives up to the original movie, but on its own it's still an enjoyable film. It packs humor,Surprisingly dazzling with great special effect and some charming characters. As someone who didn't expect much going into this, and as someone who thought a prequel to the legendary "The Wizard of Oz" was pointless, I must say I was impressed with how much I enjoyed the movie. It in no way lives up to the original movie, but on its own it's still an enjoyable film. It packs humor, excitement, and some surprising emotion. The cast is fantastic, particularly the memorable supporting cast. There are some inaccuracies here and there but overall it ties in nicely with the original movie, and has a slight mature story that tells you not to play with peoples emotions. Overall it's a great film, and while it ay not live up to its predecessor, it's still worth a watch. Expand
  40. Mar 25, 2013
    8
    Enjoyable fantasy flick by Sam Raimi may have the same 'plot points' as Disney's own Alice in Wonderland, but done in such an enthusiastic fashion that you just can't help but smile. Raimi and the casts infuse so much energy into this production that it covers up some inconsistencies in the plot. Psychedelic production values and a lot of humor made this feel like an acid trip. While theEnjoyable fantasy flick by Sam Raimi may have the same 'plot points' as Disney's own Alice in Wonderland, but done in such an enthusiastic fashion that you just can't help but smile. Raimi and the casts infuse so much energy into this production that it covers up some inconsistencies in the plot. Psychedelic production values and a lot of humor made this feel like an acid trip. While the CGI might feel a little too much, but when it works (i.e. in China doll's case), it really works. One thing I like is that Oz doesn't really gain any magic powers by the end of the film, and its conclusion is so consistent with his character and his abilities. Kudos for Franco for selling this character, in a role meant for Rob Downey Jr. of all people. Expand
  41. Dec 18, 2013
    7
    When I first heard that Disney was doing a prequel to the Wizard of Oz, I was kind of annoyed. Then I remembered that they did a pretty decent job making a sequel to it, 25 years earlier. My hopes got even higher when I heard that James Franco would star in it. To me, he was such an interesting choice to play the wizard. Franco is a very versatile actor, but he's known more for action andWhen I first heard that Disney was doing a prequel to the Wizard of Oz, I was kind of annoyed. Then I remembered that they did a pretty decent job making a sequel to it, 25 years earlier. My hopes got even higher when I heard that James Franco would star in it. To me, he was such an interesting choice to play the wizard. Franco is a very versatile actor, but he's known more for action and comedy, not family films, but he brings a very interesting dynamic to the movie. Much like the Wizard of Oz and Return To Oz, this film is taken directly from the original Oz stories of L. Frank Baum. Once again, instead of just adapting a book, the screen writers picked and chose from several stories to create this one, and if I may say so, they did a very good job. Of course there is a bunch of Disneyizing to it, as seen with the spunky china girl and the talking monkey, but it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. Franco is terrific and really carries the story. He combines his charms and looks with goofiness and ingenuity to make his character come alive in a way that L. Frank Baum would have loved. He's paired with Mila Kunis who is also really good and used to playing unlikable characters...Shut up Meg! What I especially liked about this film is how they played off the original. Starting in black & white, in an old box format, before opening up to the tradition high def. widescreen view was ingenious. I also loved how people from the black & white story had roles in Oz, just like the original. What was strange though is that they made Oz out to be a real place and discounted the whole dream aspect of the stories. In all of Baum's writings it was never known for a certainty weather or not Oz was a real place. The fact of the matter is that nothing in this genre will ever be as good as the original Wizard of Oz, but The Great & Powerful answers a lot of questions, is taken directly from the writings of the original author, has a great cast, and really does an impressive job of connecting to a film that was made 75 years earlier. Expand
  42. Jun 23, 2013
    8
    The film starts off unimpressively in B&W and old-timey but if you can endure past Oscar's trip to Oz then you're in for a visual feast. You really need a 55-in or larger 3D HDTV to really benefit from this offering, I have one from LG, and the cinematography stands out as its own feature. We come into Oz in full saturated color at full 1080p, quite a treat. And there are severalThe film starts off unimpressively in B&W and old-timey but if you can endure past Oscar's trip to Oz then you're in for a visual feast. You really need a 55-in or larger 3D HDTV to really benefit from this offering, I have one from LG, and the cinematography stands out as its own feature. We come into Oz in full saturated color at full 1080p, quite a treat. And there are several jump-from-your-seat moments that are best experienced in 3D. The plot and characters are aimed more at tween girls but it's tolerable for the rest of us, especially towards the climactic end for which you should have tissues on hand. Overall, it's a great prequel for one of America's enduring family classics. Expand
  43. Jun 24, 2013
    8
    You can dissect this movie in every way and find a way to degrade it to the original, or you can take it for what it is. It is a delightful treat to see great visuals with wonderful characters.
  44. Aug 24, 2013
    7
    Being a prequel to "The Wizard of Oz" (Which, by the way, is the most critically acclaimed movie on all of Metacritic), people probably had high expectations for this movie. Because it wasn't amazing, I think that many people are under-rating it. It's still good and as far as a prequel goes, I thought they did a good job. While at times they add that "Disney Magic" which as much of anBeing a prequel to "The Wizard of Oz" (Which, by the way, is the most critically acclaimed movie on all of Metacritic), people probably had high expectations for this movie. Because it wasn't amazing, I think that many people are under-rating it. It's still good and as far as a prequel goes, I thought they did a good job. While at times they add that "Disney Magic" which as much of an inner child I am does slightly annoy me, the story line works well. The visual effects aren't exactly Avatar standard, but they don't stoop as low as "Spy Kids: Game Over" either. For the movie that it was, I thought the visual effects were reasonable. Overall, it's not the most amazing movie you'll ever see, but it's still enjoyable. Expand
  45. Mar 16, 2013
    8
    Great visuals, nice cast. the monkey is cool too. The storyline is OK, it's like a prequel to the original Oz. The 3d effects are decent. Such movies are good to let your brain rest and to take you away from everyday routine. Nothing more.
  46. Apr 20, 2013
    7
    Not the best movie of year 2013,but fair enough humor and 3De ffects make movie is watchable.I felt movie is lacking a steady plot.Anyway this worth to watch if you in to simple pop corn movies.
  47. Mar 13, 2013
    9
    Great movie that while watching I couldnt help but get excited about the original movie and how this one ties it all together.. explains why this character is the the way they are.. worth watching.. 3d effects are cool.. nothing too breathtaking so 2d would be just as enjoyable. Go see it.. actors and actresses did well.. found myself wanting more at the end.. like felt quick because itGreat movie that while watching I couldnt help but get excited about the original movie and how this one ties it all together.. explains why this character is the the way they are.. worth watching.. 3d effects are cool.. nothing too breathtaking so 2d would be just as enjoyable. Go see it.. actors and actresses did well.. found myself wanting more at the end.. like felt quick because it was so enjoyable Expand
  48. Jun 29, 2013
    7
    Had our family smiling and managed to keeps us engaged. The darkness may be to strong for those that are younger than 8-9 or so... Exceeded my low expectations.
  49. Apr 17, 2013
    8
    I am not particularly fond of the original movie, which I consider to be overly saccharine and wildly overated, mostly by people who fantasise obsessively about "movie magic" and how great the movies of the thirties and forties were. I really wasn't expecting much. In fact I only went to this one because I made an error in booking. So I was pleasantly surprised at how witty, emotionallyI am not particularly fond of the original movie, which I consider to be overly saccharine and wildly overated, mostly by people who fantasise obsessively about "movie magic" and how great the movies of the thirties and forties were. I really wasn't expecting much. In fact I only went to this one because I made an error in booking. So I was pleasantly surprised at how witty, emotionally engaging and spectacular this film is. James Franco is not all that appealing, but the performances of the three witches are great especially Michelle Williams. The special effects are pretty good, the humour was fine, the romantic riffs were deftly handled. And the porcelain doll was particularly well done she has most of the best lines, for a start. The 3D was excellent as well. Congrats to Sam Raimi for pulling something so good out of pretty unpromising material. A real labour of love, with plenty of movie magic of its own. Expand
  50. Oct 1, 2013
    8
    Oz the Great and Powerful was actually better than I thought it would be.My favorite characters in the movie was the China girl, and Witch of the west.Allot of people seem to think this is a remake but it`s a separate story.
  51. Apr 21, 2013
    8
    After going on a date and seeing this movie, I honestly was surprised. I have never scene the original and hadn't heard anything about this one. And I must say it was a true emotionally brilliant experience. The heart, the action and character development is just truly brilliant. It engages the audience right form the beginning and never lets go. As stated before I've yet to see theAfter going on a date and seeing this movie, I honestly was surprised. I have never scene the original and hadn't heard anything about this one. And I must say it was a true emotionally brilliant experience. The heart, the action and character development is just truly brilliant. It engages the audience right form the beginning and never lets go. As stated before I've yet to see the original but via parodies and pop culture references, I have the basic knowledge of the original. And I must say, as a prequel it is just brilliant how everything unfolds and explains itself. Truly brilliant film worth watching Expand
  52. Mar 23, 2013
    7
    This film had many things that could have gone wrong, but they really did a great job. It´s beautiful and colourful. The beginning in black and white is cool and when the wizard finally arrives in Oz... wow it´s so beautiful. Of course this is a film based on the visual effects and tries to pay homage to the original. But it´s not an empty film at all. It´s way better than Alice inThis film had many things that could have gone wrong, but they really did a great job. It´s beautiful and colourful. The beginning in black and white is cool and when the wizard finally arrives in Oz... wow it´s so beautiful. Of course this is a film based on the visual effects and tries to pay homage to the original. But it´s not an empty film at all. It´s way better than Alice in Wonderland. The actors did a good job. The movie is constantly funny and people enjoy it from start to finish. There are a few moments that feel truly scary (totally unexpected for me) and the two best characters (the monkey and the little porcelain girl) are great. Incredible that they make you feel sad for a character like that little porcelain. Totally recommendable. Not a masterpiece but at least what all big blockbusters full of visual effects should be Expand
  53. Jun 9, 2013
    7
    I felt this was a pretty good movie actually. At times, it was like watching Alice in wonderland more than anything. Maybe because of all the twisted environment with colors. But it had some nice characters in the movie, but it all came together I think a bit too fast. I wanted to see more of the background stories of each character. The main character was solid but I think just didn'tI felt this was a pretty good movie actually. At times, it was like watching Alice in wonderland more than anything. Maybe because of all the twisted environment with colors. But it had some nice characters in the movie, but it all came together I think a bit too fast. I wanted to see more of the background stories of each character. The main character was solid but I think just didn't make me feel that much into the movie as if i was watching it with maybe Johnny Depp? It's just the dialogue sometimes either felt awkward or no point. It was just very PGish. i know it's a Disney movie, so expect that. But It was just too 'happy feel good' for me. There were no real threat or turmoil and urgency to save the world of Oz. Overall, a solid good movie but i thought it would have been much better than it turned out. The movie title doesn't exactly show it. Maybe Oz got too consumed with power or something. It would have been a much better side plot than a love story with the witch sisters. Expand
  54. Mar 20, 2013
    9
    A fabulous fantasy and a blast to watch, Oz the Great and Powerful is visually powerful and a great family movie!!! Great acting (you actually feel sorry for a specific character), fantastic visuals, and a handful of references to Disney fairy tales and the original 1939 classic. Plus, despite being over 2 hours long, this Oz prequel never has a boring moment integrated into it. SamA fabulous fantasy and a blast to watch, Oz the Great and Powerful is visually powerful and a great family movie!!! Great acting (you actually feel sorry for a specific character), fantastic visuals, and a handful of references to Disney fairy tales and the original 1939 classic. Plus, despite being over 2 hours long, this Oz prequel never has a boring moment integrated into it. Sam Raimi has outdone himself!!!

    Its' also clean for the most part. Though I do have to point out that if your younger ones were frightened by the witches/flying monkeys in the original Oz, stay FAR AWAY from this hot air balloon ride. This rendition of the classic magical land is a considerably darker and scarier place. Unlike the G-rated original that's fine for most 4 and 5 year olds on up, this PG-rated prequel of sorts is more for ages 9 and up.

    For a more detailed review, visit www.moviestakenseriously.blogspot.com
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  55. Jul 20, 2013
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. To be in the shadow of the original, it certainly didn't suck. The dialogue is witty, and the references weren't forced. The casting was stupid though, (I mean Mila Kunis as the wicked witch of the west, really?). But with that said, it is still enjoyable despite being in the shadow of a masterpiece. Expand
  56. Mar 17, 2013
    9
    I was skeptical about this film because of the poor reviews, and I went only because my 6-year-old son demanded it. I was very pleasantly surprised by the quality of the story and cinematography. How the Wizard of Oz came to be was craftily and clearly explained--very faithful to the original story. James Franco was a very likeable con artist with a good heart. My son enjoyed the plotI was skeptical about this film because of the poor reviews, and I went only because my 6-year-old son demanded it. I was very pleasantly surprised by the quality of the story and cinematography. How the Wizard of Oz came to be was craftily and clearly explained--very faithful to the original story. James Franco was a very likeable con artist with a good heart. My son enjoyed the plot twists and the fun action sequences in the hot air balloon. I've been tiring of films that overstimulate with special effects at the expense of story, but this film had a nice balance of action and character development. The titles were particularly original and artistic. A great family film! Expand
  57. Mar 23, 2013
    7
    Went in with extremely low expectations and came out feeling quite happy with the entire experience. Yes, there's lots of CGI but its great and doesn't need to be believable as we are in the fantastical world of OZ. Glad Disney stuck to the original story. The beginning and opening credits are worth every minute! Some cheesy moments but we are watching an OZ film!
  58. Mar 24, 2013
    8
    Surprisingly, this was one spectacle. Even though it doesn't live up to the original "The Wizard of Oz" it's still one to behold. I was afraid that it would be like "Alice in Wonderland" a wonderluss boring tale with some bad acting. Thank God that wasn't the case. It does have cheesy moments, but overall it's a visual marvel.
  59. Mar 26, 2013
    9
    The Wizard of Oz has been 1 of my favorite movies since I was a little girl. When I first saw the previews for Oz, The Great and Powerful, I instantly wanted to see it. So, on opening night, I took my 12 year old cousin who was also excited to see it. My expectations were set pretty high considering my love for The Wizard of Oz. This movie did not disappoint. I was truly amazed at how wellThe Wizard of Oz has been 1 of my favorite movies since I was a little girl. When I first saw the previews for Oz, The Great and Powerful, I instantly wanted to see it. So, on opening night, I took my 12 year old cousin who was also excited to see it. My expectations were set pretty high considering my love for The Wizard of Oz. This movie did not disappoint. I was truly amazed at how well this prequel was constructed, informing you about how things cam to be in Oz before Dorothy was there (how the great wizard had come from Kansas as he had told Dorothy, the reason "nobody have ever seen the great Oz" and the relationship between Oz and the witches. It was done in such a way to get the point across without forcing it into the story too much. There were plenty of humorous pieces fit in to relate to an all age audience, without being inappropriate. The one thing that was missing with the story behind the ruby slippers, but I found out later that MGM has the slippers under copyright as this was their addition to the movie, not what was in the book.

    For those expecting a remake of the 1939 movie, forget it. This is more like a prequel without being called one. There is no scarecrow, tin man or cowardly lion. There are several other characters who are included as well as many new friends who will tug at your heartstrings. Some of the movie may be a little scary for young children, but otherwise it is something to be loves by audiences of all ages.
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  60. Apr 10, 2013
    7
    A magical cheesy ride that passes the time with beautiful aesthetics. I would have liked to see more depth and personally a flurry of songs that does credit to the original. That said I enjoyed the film and performances for what it was. If you like children's films, magic, Oz and adventure then worth a watch.
  61. Jun 23, 2013
    9
    There are certain films for which can never be produced a fully palatable sequel (or prequel). I think those who made Oz the Great and Powerful knew this and didn't try to make a seamless transition; that was the right choice. I was hesitant going into this film, thinking it would be a disappointment, but I found myself smiling knowingly, laughing many times and in awe of the new placesThere are certain films for which can never be produced a fully palatable sequel (or prequel). I think those who made Oz the Great and Powerful knew this and didn't try to make a seamless transition; that was the right choice. I was hesitant going into this film, thinking it would be a disappointment, but I found myself smiling knowingly, laughing many times and in awe of the new places to be found in the world over the rainbow. Could I ever say that any movie made today can stand alongside the original classic, The Wizard of Oz as an equal? Of course not. But this is the best attempt that I think anyone could hope for and if you judge it on its own and for the tie in's made, I think it's great...and powerful. Expand
  62. Jun 26, 2013
    8
    Don't listen to the critics and haters, the movie will not do you wrong. It has warm moments and great original characters such as the china girl. It also does the classic justice and ties in great with it. Props to James Franco for doing one of his best rolls yet.
  63. Oct 23, 2013
    9
    If anyone was going to tackle the works of the L. Frank Baum and catch the imagery Sami Rami was the perfect choice. The idea was intriguing and not only did Disney pull it off, they also gave us another reason to love the world of Oz.

    Oscar(James Franco) is a magician, or more of a con artist and when he ends up in Oz after being pulled into a tornado everyone in Oz thinks he has come
    If anyone was going to tackle the works of the L. Frank Baum and catch the imagery Sami Rami was the perfect choice. The idea was intriguing and not only did Disney pull it off, they also gave us another reason to love the world of Oz.

    Oscar(James Franco) is a magician, or more of a con artist and when he ends up in Oz after being pulled into a tornado everyone in Oz thinks he has come to fulfill a prophecy to defeat the evil witch.

    The world of Oz is stunning. The visuals for the most part are incredible.It was a pleasant surprice that they did not go too close to the original so viewers would not be making comparisons scene by scene.

    The first half hour did feel very rushed and they could of benefited with developing the character of Theodora (Mila Kunis)

    A couple of the casting choices seemed miscast like Racheal Weisz who didn't seem to fit the role of Evanora. Mila Kunis defiantly steals the show with a fascinating personality who you seemed to really care about.

    James Franco played his character fine and it was a brave choice to cast someone so young.

    Overall Oz is a must see for anyone who enjoyed either 1939 Wizard of Oz or the novels. It most certainly has the potential to become a successful franchise.
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  64. Jul 20, 2013
    9
    I made plans to see this movie, then I saw it was rated 64% and I was like "oh crap...". Then I saw it anyways and thought it was great. I really like movies that take you to a new world and this did just that. The movie was somewhat unpredicatable which I liked. Anyway, i'd recommend it. I came out of the movie feeling like I just saw something great.
  65. Jul 24, 2013
    8
    "Oz: The Great and Powerful" falls to the middle 'cause it's little bit too frightening for kids and too childish for adults, but is saved by great acting, especially Franco with his not-too-serious performance and excellent visual effects
  66. Sep 5, 2013
    10
    I have always loved Disney. This is a movie I wouldn't expect from them, because their movies are normally kid movies. This was amazing, and it is my favorite movie. It is hilarious, well-written, interesting, and you are always on the edge of your seat.
  67. Sep 21, 2013
    7
    The magic and eye candy will keep you and the kids interested for a while, but where does it all go after that? So, Franco learns his lesson, plays a trick on Weisz, then rewards everyone who helped him along the way. "The best gift I can give to you is the gift of my friendship." says Franco. I bet he got a lot of s**t for that at the roast.
  68. Apr 28, 2014
    9
    I tend to rate movies based on a few basic points: is it true to itself; is it interesting/stimulating; and does it leave me with a different mood ie does it move me?

    I tend to be moved by corny, black and self-aware humour, and Oz managed all three: hence this movie was great for me! There are different ways to define movies by genre, and this one falls, in my private method of
    I tend to rate movies based on a few basic points: is it true to itself; is it interesting/stimulating; and does it leave me with a different mood ie does it move me?

    I tend to be moved by corny, black and self-aware humour, and Oz managed all three: hence this movie was great for me!

    There are different ways to define movies by genre, and this one falls, in my private method of delineation, of 'death dream'. Other movies such as the original Oz, Donnie Darko, Dark City, and possibly the Matrix, fit this bill. Moving an audience past the end of life and onto the bridge between here and not-here is a challenge, and one I love seeing done with consistency within the definitions of the movie itself.

    Matrix 2 and 3 were dismal failures becuase they left the lead-centered nature of Matrix 1, and ventured from exploration of concepts into something preposterous. These other movies were successful in the way they maintained the psychological focus within the main character's perceptions and projections, and the world within the movie operated as a function of their psychology.

    Oz the Great and Powerful is a pure death-dream movie, and is a continuous journey from one regret and failure to another as the main character transmutes guilt to wholeness. I thoroughly enjoyed the main character's journey!

    One a more superficial level, the style of the movie was completely integrated with the characterisations, and I LOVED the wicked witches three! Casting was spot-on! There was an almost total absence of non-white characters - green face-paint and monkeys don't really count, but it was wonderfully refreshing to have the male require saving from time-to-time! And: My name's 'Knuck!!!'

    Final verdict: Ya!
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  69. Apr 27, 2014
    8
    This movie is good, don't get me wrong. But the only way you can really enjoy it is if you block out everything you already know about the original classic the Wizard of Oz. At times it's hard to follow if you are clinging onto that, especially as half of the characters that are in this movie, don't even get the slightest mention in the original which is mean to come after this one on aThis movie is good, don't get me wrong. But the only way you can really enjoy it is if you block out everything you already know about the original classic the Wizard of Oz. At times it's hard to follow if you are clinging onto that, especially as half of the characters that are in this movie, don't even get the slightest mention in the original which is mean to come after this one on a timeline scale. However, forgetting all that the movie is whimsical and magical, and actually at times makes really good comparisons to the original story. Expand
  70. Jan 11, 2015
    10
    Though it most certainly doesn't have as much songs as the original film, Oz the Great and Powerful is a spectacular film that you'll enjoy a lot! It has plenty of funny scenes and the end will make you want to root on the good guys!
Metascore
44

Mixed or average reviews - based on 42 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 42
  2. Negative: 10 out of 42
  1. Reviewed by: David Denby
    Mar 18, 2013
    30
    At the center of the movie, in place of the ardent, emotionally pulverizing Judy Garland, there is James Franco...as he smirks and winks, his reflexive self-deprecation comes off as a gutless kind of cool, and it sinks this odd, fretful, uncertain movie like a boulder. [18 March 2013, p.86]
  2. Reviewed by: Lawrence Toppman
    Mar 10, 2013
    58
    What we get here is Oz the Amiable and Unthreatening.
  3. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Mar 10, 2013
    75
    It's familiar enough to be comfortable but not so familiar that it feels worn and repetitive.