Tonight The Wizard of Oz was shown on TNT in High Definition. I swore I wasn’t going to watch it until I got the new 3 disc set of the film for Christmas, but I couldn’t resist taking a peek. I of course… was hooked instantly, and watched the entire thing! The new print is gorgeous. The colors are so rich and the images are very sharp.
As I write this I am pondering why this movie moves me so. I have seen it at least 50 times before, and it has never failed to please. I think when I was a child, I wanted to escape my world and visit my own, “Land of Oz”. I was an awkward, overweight kid, who didn’t fit in with his peers, and The Wizard of Oz took me away from my worries and troubles. I keenly identified with the role of Dorothy. Judy Garland’s performance was so real that I became empathetic to her character. When Dorothy was terrified, I was terrified… and when she cried, I cried.
Okay, I’ll admit it, I still cry… but it’s different now as an adult. Now at the ripe old age of 42, I find The Wizard of Oz touches me on a different level entirely. The feeling of “I wanna go home” pulls terribly at my heartstrings. I miss my brother, who died at his own hand. I miss my father who lost a brilliant mind to Alzheimer’s Disease, and then died. I miss my mother before she had a stroke. I miss the wonderfully talented, loving, friends and family who have passed away due to: aids, cancer, heart disease, and so many other illnesses. I miss the friends that fell by the wayside, but are still living. I miss the wonderful pets I’ve had… especially my dog Cuddles, and my very own dog named, Toto. I miss the 32 inch waist I had… for a minute! Okay I’ll stop, this is starting to sound like a Gilbert O’Sullivan song. I apologize.
All I really want to say is that The Wizard of Oz has something for all of us, no matter what are age. Its lessons are as relevant today as they were 66 years ago, when the movie premiered. I am sure they will be as relevant 100 years from now.
I plan to “never go looking any further than my own backyard,” and cherish each moment. I hope that you can too.