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The Wizard of Oz
PG, 103 minutes
Judy Garland, Frank Morgan, Ray Bolger, Bert Lahr, Jack Haley
Mark your calendars for an extra-special screening of this 1939 Technicolor classic, based on the best-selling children’s book by L. Frank Baum. It’s impossible to imagine Shirley Temple in the role of the Kansas farm girl who is swept away by a tornado to the magical Land of Oz, but she was MGM’s first choice. Fortunately for us all, 16-year-old Judy Garland got the job, and the rest is history. Her voice, her lovely face, and the vulnerability she projects even as she shows courage make Garland the perfect Dorothy Gale, who sets off on an archetypal quest to find her way home with the help of the “great and powerful Wizard of Oz.” The film has given us unforgettable characters, from the green-faced Wicked Witch of the West to the three endearing misfits who befriend Dorothy and her little dog Toto: the Tin Man (Haley), Scarecrow (Bolger), and Cowardly Lion (Lahr). Equally memorable is the music. Garland’s rendition of “Over the Rainbow” won an Academy Award, and the song was chosen as the #1 song on the A.F.I.’s “100 Years, 100 Songs” list. In 2007, the American Film Institute named The Wizard of Oz as the 10th greatest film of all time.