Does Oz the Great and Powerful capture the magic and wonder of the 1939 classic?
Oz: The Great and Powerful
Director Sam Raimi (the Spider-Man trilogy) helms this CGI-heavy prequel to The Wizard of Oz about a small-time Kansas carnival magician (James Franco) who is swept away to a wondrous land where he is mistaken for a great wizard by everyone but a trio of witches (played by Michelle Williams, Rachel Weisz and Mila Kunis).
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters
After the success of his zombie-Nazi horror film Dead Snow, director Tommy Wirkola gets his big Hollywood break with this imaginative take on the classic fairy tale characters who are now grown up and work as bounty hunters (played by Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton) travelling the world disposing of witches. (Paramount)
When his son is wrongly convicted of trafficking drugs, his father (Dwayne Johnson) agrees to go undercover for the DEA to infiltrate a drug cartel led by a dangerous Mexican drug lord (Benjamin Bratt).
Minnie Driver stars in this drama as a high school teacher in 1976 Wales that tries to excite her students on the works of Shakespeare by putting on a version of The Tempest interspersed with popular songs of the day by artists like ELO, David Bowie and Nick Drake. (eOne)
In this version of the last days of the life of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln (Billy Campbell of The Killing), narrator Tom Hanks walks us through the conspiracy behind the assassination and the further plans of killer John Wilkes Booth (Jesse Johnson) and his followers. (Fox)
Fans of shows like The West Wing might enjoy this drama about a political strategist (Rob Lowe) who faces a crisis when he is forced to choose between helping someone he doesn’t believe in get elected if it means a positive move for the country. (TVA)
TV ON DVD:
The Inbetweeners: Season Three
In the final season of this raunchy British sitcom, the four lads are now in their final year of high school and their search for sex and adventure is amped up to 11. Throughout this 6-episode season the boys each seem to get their own outrageously situation such as Simon’s “coming out party” at a charity fashion show or Will’s date with a much taller girl. The U.S. tried to remake this series last year, but nothing matches the original for shocking humour. This 6-episode season is available on a 2-dvd set with EXTRAS like deleted scenes, bloopers and commentaries from the cast and crew. (eOne)
Perry Mason: Season 9 (Vol. 1)
Raymond Burr’s (almost) unbeatable lawyer Perry Mason helped serve out justice in this long-running series for nine seasons alongside his private investigator Paul Drake (William Hopper) or his personal secretary Della Street (Barbara Hale). This 5-disc set features the first 15 episodes of the show’s final season (the remaining episodes will be released in August). (Paramount)