CPD Classics: The Wizard Of Oz (1939) Review

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The Wizard Of Oz (1939)

Directed by Victor Fleming

Based on The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L Frank Baum

Judy Garland
Frank Morgan
Ray Bolger
Bert Lahr
Jack Haley
Billie Burke
Margaret Hamilton
Charley Grapewin
Clara Blandick
Pat Walshe

Running time: 101 minutes

Plot Synopsis:
Dorothy. Kansas. Toto. A scarecrow, tin man & lion. Munchkins. Flying monkeys. The Emerald City. Good witches & bad witches. Yellow brick roads. Etc.

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My Opinion:

I figured it’s a good time to do this one as a CPD Classic because 1. I believe they’re doing something special for this at the Oscars this Sunday and 2. It’s another review I can add to my IMDB Top 250 Challenge HERE. Oh, and 3. I love the movie.

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It’s hard to know what to say about a classic like The Wizard Of Oz when, I assume, most everyone has seen it. I grew up with The Wizard Of Oz and for years I thought the best movies in the whole wide world were The Wizard Of Oz and the Star Wars movies. I’ve of course “grown out” of The Wizard Of Oz a little bit now (unlike Star Wars!) but I’ll always be very fond of this childhood classic.

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I’ve not read any L Frank Baum so know only the movie. The way the film turned to bright technicolor when Dorothy opened the door to Munchkinland made me SO happy every time I watched it. Now, this was in the old days so I only got to see it once a year when they’d show it on TV. It was such a big event when it was time for the annual showing of The Wizard Of Oz! I remember one year holding a tape recorder up to the TV to record as much of the movie as I could. A tape recorder! Do the young bloggers even know what I’m talking about?! Man I’m showing my age. But I listened to that tape over and over again and I’m pretty sure I can still recite every line from my very favorite part of the film (Munchkinland, of course!).

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Then of course there are the songs. I’m sure everyone will agree that Somewhere Over The Rainbow is one of the biggest film classics of all-time. I personally liked all the Munchkinland songs the most & lines such as the coroner’s “She’s not only merely dead, she’s really most sincerely dead”. Ha! I thought that was so funny as a kid. Oh! And the Lollipop Guild! Those guys were AWESOME!

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I do wonder what kids these days think of this film. I grew up with it and never really gave it much thought but it IS pretty mental! And I found some bits VERY scary (mainly the talking apple trees, the wicked witch of course, and those horrible flying monkeys! they still creep me out). But, hey – I watched it from a young age and turned out okay. Right? RIGHT?! ANSWER ME, PEOPLE!!!! Well, it’s good for kids to be a “little” scared sometimes, right? I think we shelter them too much these days.

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I have no idea where this review is going. I just feel a little silly talking about a film that’s so well known. It’s a classic. It’s VERY iconic. Those ruby slippers on that yellow brick road, Dorothy’s dress, The Emerald City, the three friends she meets along the way, the munchkins and Glinda the good witch, the Wicked Witch of the West and the creepy way her sister’s feet curl up under Dorothy’s house, the way it does match up REALLY well with Pink Floyd’s Dark Side Of The Moon album (try it – it’s trippy!). I don’t know what to say other than it truly is a classic. They don’t make ’em like this anymore! That’s why The Wizard Of Oz is a CPD Classic.

My Rating: 9/10

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By the way: Stay away from Oz The Great And Powerful. Ugh.


32 thoughts on “CPD Classics: The Wizard Of Oz (1939) Review

  1. Absolutely a classic – even an IPC Classic : )


    “But, hey – I watched it from a young age and turned out okay. Right? RIGHT?!”………………………………… um

    *slowly tiptoes backwards out of room*

  2. Oh come on! Where are the spoiler alerts. Give a guy 8 decades before you go spoiling things!
    Kidding, kidding.
    But I should really watch this at some point.

    • Whaaaaaaaat?! Are you seriously saying you’ve NOT seen this? Ever?? I didn’t think I’d find ANYONE who hadn’t! : ) And, wow – not one 10?? I’ve given just one out of somewhere between 100 & 200 reviews. : )

      • Yep. For all the kids movies we always had on rotation, this was never in the house. No particular reason, just never made it in. I avoided it on TV because of pretentious reasons involving a hatred of how commercials ruin the flow of a movie blah blah blah. I do own it on blu ray now. I suppose I have to watch it 🙂
        And my ranking system makes it hard to reach a perfect 10. I have given four 9.5s though!

      • Yep! You know you have to watch it. I’d love to know your thoughts! Would be interesting to know what someone who didn’t grow up with it thinks…

  3. Great film. Revisited it not so long ago for my blog, and was blown away by how brilliant it is. Was worried that my childhood love for the film might not have been accurate, but it was.

    • It IS great. : ) It probably deserves a higher rating. I’d pretend I’ve not watched it since I was a kid but the last time was probably a year ago or so. I think it’s pretty timeless. : )

  4. Many classics still are remembered well today. However, I think The Wizard of Oz is the icing on the cake, more rememberable than classics such as: Citizen Kane, Casablanca and Gone with the Wind. I can’t really come up with a good reason why it is, I think mainly because it’s for all ages. It is certainly unique among all other motion films and it widens our imaginations as children.
    One of my favourites, glad you rate it so highly.

    • Glad to see so many others love this film as well. I honestly didn’t expect a lot of comments on this one for some reason. I think it’s more memorable than the ones you listed because it feels more timeless than those as Oz is a fantasy land. I guess – I don’t know. : ) It’s still just as great all these years later! : )

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