Reviews: Legends Of Oz Dorothys Return

There\'s a lot of good ideas here, but something just doesn\'t click

This is the best I can describe this movie. While watching it, I could clearly tell that a lot of effort and creativity went into its creation, and there definitely is quite a number of things to like about this movie.

The designs of the characters and locations are certainly impressive (I especially like how the Emerald City looks), the characters that Dorothy encounters seem like good companions for her to hang around with (except for the Porcelain Princess, she's utterly useless and does nothing for the entire movie), and the overall sense of journey seems like a good foundation for the story. And I feel that the climax came out particularly well.

However, the devil is in the details. I think that where this movie fails is in the way the story is executed and in the way the characters are animated and in some cases modeled.

Firstly, let's talk about the latter. The most obvious problem are the human characters seen at the start and at the end of the film. Something about the gives off a strong uncanny valley vibe, and it seems that I'm not alone on that front. Not only that, but the characters in general seem to occasionally delve into either suddenly moving all spastic and quick (in a way that does not come off as a deliberate choice, unlike, say, Hotel Transylvania), or into moving in an oddly robotic manner (the judge at the Candy Land seems like a perfect example of this). This all adds up to an overall lack of consistency, where one moment everything can look fine, and the other you are being assaulted by a random fault in the animation that takes you out of the experience.

And then there's the story. There clearly was an idea on what the creators wanted to do, but they ended up failing in one specific category: from all the locations Dorothy goes through and all the companions she meets along the way, none are given enough screentime and therefore nothing feels like it's given enough weight to make you truly invested. Maybe if they removed a location or two and a companion or two, maybe then everything could be properly fleshed out. But as it is, the movie just ends up jumping from point to point in a way that left me kinda bored at times.

It's a shame, really, since I can tell that with the right retooling, this could at the very least be a decent movie. But as it is, it's just a kinda boring mediocrity that feels like it could be good, but isn't.