Family Movie Review: Oz the Great and Powerful (PG)

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OzTheGreatAndPowerful ChesapeakeFamilyMovieReviewKernel Rating (out of 5): whole-popcorn-kernalwhole-popcorn-kernalhalf-popcorn-kernal

MPAA Rating: PG        Length: 130 minutes

Age Appropriate for: 8+. The CGI creates the scariest parts of the film, which are the flying baboons that pop out in 3-D (who are also frighteningly loud), magical lightning used as a torture device, and a grotesque witch. There's also a scary hurricane, brief kissing and very lightly implied sexual content, and some mild language.

Disney could have done so much with 'Oz the Great and Powerful,' but the film feels peculiarly cold. James Franco doesn't quite nail it; character development is surprisingly brief; and even the pretty pictures feel repetitive after a while. This isn't the epic prequel we were hoping for.

By Roxana Hadadi

I don't understand how people can have a childhood without 1939's "The Wizard of Oz," because it fulfilled all of my youthful interests: Bright colors, sparkly things, and a message about the power of imagination and believing in yourself. The Lion became brave, the Tin Man emotional, the Scarecrow smarter, Dorothy more appreciative of her family. Each character realized the potentials of their reality. Disney's prequel, "Oz the Great and Powerful," however, does something weird—it attempts to sell children on the idea that believing an illusion is more important and worthwhile than dealing with real life. Wait, what?

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