What is a kids movie? Does it insult your intelligence and simplify concepts? Do you feel like you’ve lost a couple of points on your IQ after leaving the cinema? I like the recent raft of kids movies, Wreck-it-Ralph probably sits at the top of the list for taking me back to the old-school gaming days. The amount of detail and beauty these CGI creations produce is simply astounding and it makes live action seem almost not detailed or vibrant enough. I’m a big kid, I want to be wowed when I watch a movie.
So you want to watch a movie but you don’t know if it’s any good right? So you visit IMDB.com and see if that candidate for your next 3-4 hours (parking, queuing and buying popcorn, juggling the XXL frozen coke while dodging the crazy kid with the Batman costume) I started watching the movie with no expectations so when it started in black and white I was wondering if a) it was going to be like this for much longer because heck I paid full price! b) imagine how much colour they are going to splash in your face later and c) batman kid is probably asleep by now which is great because I can now enjoy the movie properly.
Enjoy I did, the colours and even motion of the colourful and alive backdrop were reminiscent of Disney cartoons from the 40s and 50s, kids these days are spoiled with the vivid details. It must have been demanding acting “on set” but nothing Ewan McGregor wouldn’t be used to. The story is well paced with plenty of funny moments shared between the titular characters, one who stands out most for me was the China Girl played by Joey King who also played her normal world amalgam (you’ll see). China Girl’s appearance is cute and demure yet she’s got a little fire especially evident when she makes the comment about self defence. Zack Braff also puts in parallel comedic performances as both Oz’s assistant and then Oz’s assistant flying Monkey (it’s an Oz story right?) Oz himself is portrayed by James Franco putting in a convincing job of a young con-artist with dreams of grandeur, the portrayal puts me in mind of the eventual father like figure from Wicked. You can kind of see where it was going.
Without telling you too much they save the day, but that isn’t why you want to watch this movie. Watch it to be amused, feel like a kid again.