Don Bauder 7:49 p.m., May 22
Something's rotten in the Emerald City
"Do you think it's going to be 124 minutes of effects-driven crap, Toto?"
James Franco and the pillarbox black-and-white sequences held my interest long enough for this anamorphic admonition to appear:
When was the last time Sam Raimi gave us anything original to look at? Evil Dead 2? The Quick and the Dead? The statute of limitations has long run out and if the trailer for Oz: The Great and Powerful is any indication, Raimi has moved on to a much more serious offense.
Sellout Sam is poised to do for the Emerald City what he did for Spider-Man: absolutely nothing.
Case in point: the evil flying monkeys that forced me to seek refuge behind my grandmother's sofa (or was that my grandmother?) when I was 5 are now cute CG plush toys magically equipped with the ability to speak.
It shows tonight, but not in IMAX. While other markets frequently screen films for the press in IMAX, San Diego isn't there yet. Don't they want the press to see their product in the best possible conditions? You would think the folks at IMAX would also appreciate the help: what critic who sees it in the wide-gauge format would fail to mention it in their write up?
Matthew drew review duty, so I'll wait for the weekend and watch as the effects and makeup do the storytelling at a mid-afternoon IMAX presentation.