Telluride Film Festival presents “Sunday at the Palm”: “The Wizard of Oz”

Telluride Film Festival presents “Sunday at the Palm”: “The Wizard of Oz”

[click “Play” to hear Erika Gordon talk about “Why Oz?”]

Wizard11x17 Telluride is sorta kinda like Oz, only our denizens are taller. And we are not plagued by witches – although switching around a consonant or two could be a game changer.

“The Wizard of Oz (1939)” is as much a part of American culture as burgers, beer and baseball. The Library of Congress named “The Wizard of Oz” the most-watched film in history, and the movie is often ranked among the “top ten best movies of all times” in  critics’ and popular polls.The perennial fantasy film from MGM during its golden years is the Telluride Film Festival’s Valentine to the community. “The Wizard of Oz” is the featured film on Sunday, February 14, part of the Festival’s ongoing Sunday at the Palm series hosted by outreach/education liaison Erika Gordon.

All the images from “Oz,” (the Yellow Brick Road, the Kansas twister), characters (Auntie Em, Toto, Dorothy, the Wicked Witch), dialogue (“Lions and tigers and bears, oh my!”, “We’re not in Kansas anymore,” “Follow the Yellow Brick Road,” or the film’s final line: “There’s no place like home”), and  its music (“Over the Rainbow”) have become indelibly etched in to our cultural landscape. The classic film has been honored with dozens of books, TV shows (HBO’s dramatic prison series Oz), references in other films, and even by pop groups (singer Elton John with his Goodbye, Yellow Brick Road album, or Pink Floyd’s 1973 album Dark Side of the Moon).

“The Wizard of Oz”  is the winner of two Oscars and was nominated for another four.
“The Wizard of Oz” “somehow seems real and important in a way most movies don’t,” wrote critic Roger Ebert of The Chicago Sun Times, “Is that because we see it first when we’re young? Or simply because it is a wonderful movie?  Or because it sounds some buried universal note, some archetype or deeply felt myth?”

Red shoes suggested for the free afternoon of entertainment. Show time is 4 p.m.

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