Friday, October 31, 2008

The Wizard of Oz (1939)



So I decided to write about The Wizard of Oz. This was the design of the Wizard of Oz poster from 1939. Although there was a lot of "new" ideas going on in Germany at this time, they really did not grasp the idea yet in the United States. There are different type faces and the poster fells a bit cluttered, compared to the German images we saw that were going on at the Bauhaus.
The Wizard of Oz is a 193
9 American musical-fantasy film mainly directed by Victor Fleming and based on the 1900 children’s novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum. The film features Judy Garland as Dorothy Gale, Ray Bolger as the Scarecrow, Jack Haley as the Tin Man, Bert Lahr as the Cowardly Lion, Billie Burke as Glinda the Good Witch of the North, Margaret Hamilton as the Wicked Witch of the West, and Frank Morgan as the Wizard.
The film follows schoolgirl Dorothy Gale who lives on a Kansas farm with her Aunt Em and Uncle Henry, but dreams of a better place "somewhere over the rainbow." After being
struck unconscious during a tornado by a window which has come loose from its frame, Dorothy dreams that she, her dog Toto, and the farmhouse are transported to the magical Land of Oz. There, the Good Witch of the North Glinda advises Dorothy to follow the yellow brick road to Emerald City and meet the Wizard of Oz, who can return her to Kansas. During her journey, she meets a Scarecrow, Tin Man and a Cowardly Lion, who join her, hoping to receive what they lack themselves (a brain, a heart, and courage, respectively), all of this is done while also trying to avoid the many plots of the Wicked Witch of the West, in her attempt to get the ruby slippers that Dorothy received from the squashed Wicked Witch of the East.When it was released during Hollywood's golden year of 1939, The Wizard of OzOz's TV broadcasts are now controlled by media mogul Ted Turner (who owns the rights), the advent of home video has made this lively musical a mainstay in the staple diet of great American films. Young Dorothy Gale (Judy Garland), her dog, Toto, and her three companions on the Yellow Brick Road to Oz--the Tin Man (Jack Haley), the Cowardly Lion (Bert Lahr), and the Scarecrow (Ray Bolger)--have become pop-culture icons and central figures in the legacy of fantasy for children. As the Wicked Witch who covets Dorothy's enchanted ruby slippers, Margaret Hamilton has had the singular honor of scaring the wits out of children for more than six decades. The film's still as fresh, frightening, and funny as it was when first released. It may take some liberal detours from the original story by L. Frank Baum, but it's loyal to the Baum legacy while charting its own course as a spectacular film. Shot in glorious Technicolor, befitting its dynamic production design (Munchkinland alone is a psychedelic explosion of color and d├ęcor), The Wizard of Oz may not appeal to every taste as the years go by, but it's required viewing for kids of all ages. didn't start out as the perennial classic it has since become. The film did respectable business, but it wasn't until its debut on television that this family favorite saw its popularity soar.


Sources: wikipedia.org
bbs.keyhole.com
amazon.com

1 comment:

April G. said...

http://www.kulturblog.com/2004/11/technicolor-an-explanation/

This site does a great job of explaining Technicolor, which is what was used to make "The Wizard of Oz" a color film. If you scroll a bit down the page and look at comment number 3, there is some really interesting information about the process and how it relates to "Oz." If you read further down the page there's some fascinating info on how Technicolor differs from colorizing a black & white film.