[Movie Review] Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return

By Melissa Platero, CCNN Writer

This is the best villain they could come up with? It almost makes me wish the Wicked Witch of the West was alive again.

The Wizard of Oz, written by L. Frank Baum, tells the legendary tale of Dorothy’s fantastical journey from Kansas to Oz, where she defeats the Wicked Witch of the West. While Baum wrote several Oz books beyond the original, the computer-animated sequel, Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return, really doesn’t do a good job bringing the classic world to life. Because of its silly storyline, lame art style, and forgettable songs, your money’s better spent elsewhere this weekend.

Right away, you’ll be taken aback by the almost creepy doll-like appearance of the characters, because they look more like some Nightmare Before Christmas version of Oz. Once you get used to the made-for-TV cheap appearance of the scenery and sorcery, the Saturday morning cartoon quality of the sound effects will tweak your ears the wrong way.

If the storyline was amazing, it’d be easy to overlook the shabby exterior, but it quickly goes downhill after Dorothy is teleported back to Oz by a rainbow… to fight an evil Jester… yah. Then, the Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Cowardly Lion have to share the screen with… a marshmallow man soldier, an incredibly obese owl named Wiser, and a tugboat tree called Tugg. Really?

Okay, but what about all the talented voice acting and singing of mega celebs like Lea Michelle, Patrick Stewart, Jim Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, Kelsey Grammer, Hugh Dancy, Oliver Platt, Martin Short, and Bernadette Peters? Well, despite the laundry list of A-list performers, their charm can’t overcome the terrible jokes, cheesy song lyrics, and eye-rollingly predictable plot. So, our final verdict? We give this film a “D+”.

Images courtesy of Summertime Entertainment.