The Wizard Of Oz : Film Review

Decent Essays

In the summer of 1939, the magical movie The Wizard of Oz was released from Hollywood.
The movie was remarkably popular at the time, and many impoverished Americans of the Great Depression forked out precious change to see it in theater. Perhaps, the movie’s immense popularity was due to its release at the time of the Great Depression, to viewers who were desperate for hope and empathy. Therefore, the Wizard of Oz’s popularity should be attributed to its representation of: common Americans in movies, the nation’s fear surrounding the president’s lack of control, and the problems that the working class of the Great Depression faced.

First, the movies of the time period depicted the common American people as heroic figures instead of the sterotypical heroines. For example, the most popular movies of the time, Gary Gerstle says, “were all stories about the little guy, rising up.” (Gerstle, “Movies as a Cultural Force in the 1930’s) This implies that Americans found relatable characters who made a supernatural difference gave them a sense of hope for a bright future. To continue, Gerstle says, “It aligns Hollywood, in some profound ways, with the politics of the New Deal, where the little man was celebrated as being the salvation of America at a time where big corporations and the rich were thought to have led America astray.” (Gerstle, “Movies as a Cultural Force in the 1930’s) The labor force at the time was a way for American’s to take charge of their own economic future.

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