Movie Challenge: Childhood Favorite

8.) A favorite movie from your childhood

answer: The Wizard of Oz

When I was young, The Wizard of Oz was shown on television once a year. I always looked forward to watching the beloved classic, even though I could never get much farther than the castle scene without nodding off to sleep. my mother would say it must be because of the poppies.

poppies will put them to sleep. sleeep…

The black and white portion of the movie scared me. I found Miss Gulch more frightening than her green skinned counterpart; real life monsters are much scarier than pretend ones. my grandmother had a neighbor who reminded me of the real world Wicked Witch, always chasing me away from where I rode my bike or tried to sled ride in the winter, even though it wasn’t her property to guard in the first place. I could easily picture her trying to take someone’s dog away from them.

But I knew if I could just get through the black and white portion of the movie, then all the fun would begin when it switched to color!

Meeting each of the main players was something I eagerly anticipated. Scarecrow, who was smart even though he claimed to need a brain.

(and now that song will be stuck in my head for the next 3 days)

 

The Tin Man, who was gentle and caring even though he thought he lacked a heart.

(my favorite part of the whole movie)

 

and The Cowardly Lion, who may have been timid but fought to protect his friends.

I’ll go in there for Dorothy. Wicked Witch or no Wicked Witch, guards or no guards, I’ll tear them apart. I may not come out alive, but I’m going in there.

The way the Wicked Witch popped up and caused trouble was concerning, but the scariest thing childhood me thought she did was try to keep Dorothy from getting back to Auntie Em. that crystal ball scene got me every time!

In the end, they all realized that what they were ‘missing’ was within them the whole time, just not in the way they expected it to be. that lesson left a big impression upon me as a child. it suggested to me that the conventional way of doing things wasn’t the only way of doing things.

The Wizard of Oz may be considered a children’s movie, but it’s lessons have carried me through adulthood as well. life is full of wicked witches who try to make everyone around them feel as unhappy as they do, and people who hide behind curtains pretending to be much more than they are. sometimes we need reminded that home isn’t really a place but a feeling that lives inside of you, and to not let ourselves get so wrapped up in trying to reach Oz that we miss all that the yellow brick road has to offer along the way.

 

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7 thoughts on “Movie Challenge: Childhood Favorite

  1. Those winged monkeys scared the s*** out of me as a kid. I had read and loved all the books, but I’ve never been *as* in love with the musical / film. However, when non-Americans ask me what films they have to see for cultural literacy purposes, this is always on the list. If you haven’t seen this film, there are things about the U.S. that you won’t completely understand.

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      1. Both, I think. My ex told me concretely that he felt like seeing the film had improved his English comprehension (he finally knew what people were talking about when they said “Toto, we’re not in Kansas anymore” and stuff like that), but I also think it’s really reflective of US culture, morality, etc. It never caught on in Europe in the way it did here and that may be one reason. The whole question of searching for the great Oz, and then finding him, and then finding out he was a fake, and deciding it didn’t matter anyway — that’s a truly American theme.

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  2. Wonderful movie. I love the singing and Judy Garland at 16 was so talented. (I can’t watch it without thinking about her tragic story, though, with the studio putting her on diet pills and restricting her eating from the time she was around 14.)

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  3. My sister and I loved Wizard Of Oz. I hope my brother and sister in law let the twins watch it soon. We were allowed to stay up late and watch it growing up. My mom who is German even liked it. She got the theme of it but watched it because she loved Judy Garland. I think I wouldn’t be so attached to the musical Wicked if I hadn’t had the memories of Wizard of Oz growing up. I can’t really bear to see Oz The Great and Powerful because I want to preserve my childhood memories of Wizard of Oz. I even had a Dorothy like Barbie doll and basket and Toto dog as a child!

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    1. I’ve not seen the musical but I did read the book and I really liked it. it made all the far fetched things (like her green skin) seem plausible. Oz the Great and Powerful didn’t even feel like the same setting to me, almost like they went too over the top with it. I started watching that television show, Emerald City, but the tone was too dark so I quit after a few episodes.

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      1. Wicked is a wonderful musical. I’ve seen it twice in NYC and once at Kennedy Center here in Washington DC. My sister saw it too and loved it. Just an extension of Wizard of Oz but the songs and story are clever and touch on the same themes from Wizard of Oz. I admit I really have no intent on seeing Oz Powerful movie. Most of the people in it I’m not really liking.

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