‘The Wizard of Oz’ is a movie that was inspired in a series of books by L. F. Baum. It was published in 1900 and the movie was released in 1939. It was many years ago, and things have changed a lot since then. But the book and the film tried to inspire the new generations with some values that we can understand and believe today. But it’s true that, in general, the story is a bit conservative. The screenwriter Noel Langley introduced the idea of ‘There’s no place like home’ that became one of the most important philosophies on the film.
Dorothy is a young kid, a bit rebel, naughty. She gets in trouble easily. At the beginning of the movie she decides to run away from her family because they are too busy. Their neighbour Miss Almira Gulch wants to euthanize Toto because he bit her. So, Dorothy, a little bit irresponsible but also brave decides to leave her family to save her dog. After meeting Professor Marvel, she realises that she must be back home, but then she travels to another world.
The entire movie is about the journey of Dorothy in Oz. She is willing to be back home and, as audience, you can feel related to her because the good feeling of being at home is easy to understand. But this idea wasn’t in the books, it was introduced in the movie probably to make it easier to understand to kids and adults, more enjoyable and with some important values. The kids can learn to look after their families. But it can be also understood, in the times that the movie was made, as the importance of the whole nation together.
In the 20th century, the United States fought in two different World Wars. So the union as a country and a nation was important to fight against the enemies. I see the idea of ‘There’s no place like home’ as a very conservative. The people needed to accept that a lot of money would be spend on the war and lot of people should go to fight without knowing if they would be back alive.
So, in the end, Dorothy doesn’t leave the ‘comfort zone’ because she realises that Oz is too dangerous for her. She prefers to be closer to home, with her family, just in case her aunt is ill. But she is not. It’s true that we must watch the classic movies with different eyes. There are a lot of ideas and content that we can understand and accept today, but some other stays in the past while the things keep changing. But that doesn’t change the fact that ‘The Wizard of Oz’ is a lovely film, isn’t it?