‘Oz The Great and Powerful’ is sweet candy for the eyes

Mila Kunis and James Franco in 'Oz: The Great and Powerful'
Mila Kunis and James Franco in ‘Oz: The Great and Powerful’

Not quite 113 years ago, a name named L. Frank Baum saw his novel “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” published. In 1939, the story was made into a movie that has remained a classic for more than 70 years.  The scene where the Wizard of Oz departs in a balloon near the end is indelibly etched into the collective consciousness of people who began viewing this film as children.  Now, a ‘prequel’ has come to the big screen.

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‘The Bourne Legacy’ is only an average inheritance

Jeremy Renner and Rachel Weisz in 'The Bourne Legacy'
Jeremy Renner and Rachel Weisz in ‘The Bourne Legacy’

[rating=3]Starring: Jeremy Renner, Rachel Weisz, Edward Norton, Stacy Keach
Director(s): Tony Gilroy
Writer(s): Tony Gilroy and Dan Gilroy from the novel by Robert Ludlum

In case you missed all the memos, there is very little of Jason Bourne in The Bourne Legacy, the fourth film to spring from the novels written by the late Robert Ludlum about a highly skilled intelligence operative.  If one believes the entertainment media, when director Paul Greengrass was no longer attached to Bourne IV, Matt Damon’s interest in the project ended.  That meant new story and new star.  Jeremy Renner became “Aaron Cross,” yet another incredibly trained and talented operative working for the shadowy forces that toil for the Central Intelligence Agency.

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‘The Shape of Things’ goes from stage to screen with entertaining grace

[rating=3]Starring: Gretchen Mol, Paul Rudd, Rachel Weisz, Fred Weller
Director(s): Neil LaBute
Writer(s): Neil LaBute

Rachel Weisz and Paul Rudd star in 'The Shape of Things'
Rachel Weisz and Paul Rudd star in ‘The Shape of Things’

The Shape of Things first sparked my interest when it was playing off-Broadway on the New York stage. I found it curious that film stars Paul Rudd and Rachel Weisz were giving the stage a shot in roles that seemed completely out-of-character. I missed the chance to see the story unfold on stage, only to find out that it was debuting in theaters shortly after with the original cast.

The film opens with a rebellious MFA student Evelyn (Weisz) surveying what she has deemed “fake” art in a museum. She plans to deface a sculpture to make a point. Paul Rudd enters to stop her as Adam, an anxious, nerdy museum guard. Somehow, a quirky courtship begins.

Read more‘The Shape of Things’ goes from stage to screen with entertaining grace