Oz in the News 10.7.14

Return-to-Oz-Mombi-465x316Somewhere (Scary) Over the Rainbow: Return to ‘Return to Oz’  On October 12, Hollywood Babylon will screen the brilliant, and underappreciated, Return to Oz (1985) at Dublin’s Lighthouse Cinema as part of their “Scare Your Kids Weekend” (also including a welcome screening of Ridley Scott’s Legend).  The sole directorial outing of multi-Oscar-winning editor Walter Murch, Return to Oz is a Walt Disney production often mistakenly believed to be a sequel to MGM’s beloved The Wizard of Oz (1939).  In fact, the film is an adaptation of several later books by original Oz author L. Frank Baum, principally Ozma of Oz (1907).  The film was the subject of much hand-wringing upon its release, and much snark ever since, since its story – in which Dorothy escapes incarceration in a mental hospital only to find Oz devastated by the combined forces of the wicked Princess Mombi and the malevolent Nome King – has been deemed, by adults, to be “too bleak” or “too scary” for children.  Norman Reynolds’ exquisite production design for Return to Oz draws directly on the original illustrations for Baum’s books, which were themselves inspired by the World’s Columbian Exposition held in Chicago in 1893.  The result carries the eerie poignancy one might associate with a recreation of a near-century-old vision of the future, nowhere more so than in the concluding scenes, when the devastated Emerald City is returned to a vitality that somehow seems no less ghostly.  No film before or since has offered a dust bowl dreamscape as meticulously realised as Return to Oz, although HBO’s short-lived but fascinating series Carnivàle (2003 – 2005) occasionally came close.

National The Wonderful Wizard of Oz Interactive Exhibition Visits Lakeshore  Follow the yellow brick road to Holland Museum and step into the pages of a new 1,500-square-foot interactive exhibition opening in the Holland Museum Armory building on September 27 that will run through January 3 featuring the book “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” with artwork by W.W. Denslow. Perfect for children between two and 12 years of age, visitors will feel like they’re walking through a storybook as they learn about science, art and history against the backdrop of the first American fairy tale.

Woman gets ‘How much is that doggie in the window’ stuck in head for 4 YEARS and is now plagued by ‘Somewhere over the rainbow’  Susan Root, 65, has severe tinnitus, also known as musical hallucinations, and hears constant music. She suffered years of the 1952 Patti Page novelty tune, but after four years her tune has finally changed. Now she says she’s now being plagued instead by Judy Garland’s ‘Somewhere over the Rainbow’ from the 1939 classic film The Wizard of Oz, and feels she is at ‘breaking point’.  According to the British Tinnitus Association, musical hallucination (MH), also known as musical tinnitus, is the experience of hearing music when none is being played.

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