When I watched Cinderella at Seattle Opera, I wished that I could see it through my child’s eyes. Soon after that, the whole family watched The Wizard of Oz. My opinion of the movie has changed with each viewing, evolving over time, as I have. This time I thought it would be fun to record the impressions of someone seeing it for the first time.
Here are the comments from my 8 year-old, with occasional responses from the rest of us, Mystery Science Theater-style. You know, except without the movie.
During the black and white scenes:
She’s supposed to be a little girl, but she’s as tall as the grownups.
Oh, I just love it when girls sing in movies!
[When Dorothy wakes up after getting conked on the head in the tornado] I thought she was sleeping in this part.
[Response from my 4 year-old] She’s dreaming.
Switch to color:
[4yo] Look! Fairies!
I like the soldier munchkins because they’re taller. The other munchkins are like babies.
[4yo response] I like the babies.
Ding Dong the witch is dead!
All that smoke is just to give the witch time to get off the stage.
Hey! It’s the woodman. I remember this movie now.
He’s sad because he doesn’t have a heart but you have to have a heart to be sad. And the scarecrow actually has brains..
[4yo] He does have a heart!
They’re going the wrong way. [Dorothy and friends turn around] Good job!
She’s just picking Toto up by the collar.
Oooh! The cowardly lion! [This delivered with jazz hands]
[4yo] I scare myself – that’s silly!
Scoot over. I want to sit next to daddy.
She talks weird, “Poison.”
[Daddy leaves and returns with popcorn] Since I’m sitting next to daddy I get the most popcorn.
[Snow falls on the poppies] I didn’t read this in the books.
[Daddy responds] A little white powder will perk you right up!
Hey guys, the horse changes color!
[King of the Forest song] Haha – he doesn’t sing good.
That’s all that royalty does is dance.
What makes Dorothy Dorothy? Courage!
[The lion flees the wizard and jumps through a window] They’ll have to repair that.
That’s a lot of monkeys.
[4yo] They’re going for her ruby slippers.
She’s gonna die soon.
[The witch melts, “Oh you’ve destroyed my beautiful wickedness. What a whirl, what a whirl – my favorite line in the movie]
[4yo] She died like a balloon.
Omaha! Oz the great humbug!
[4yo] Poor Dorothy.
Back in Kansas:
Now I get it! He’s the tin man – and he’s the scarecrow, and the lion, and that’s Oz!
Daddy’s favorite line in the movie:
Lion: I hope my strength holds out.
Scarecrow: I hope your tail holds out.