MOVIEmeter
Top 5000
Up 133 this week

The Wizard of Oz (1939)

Passed  |   |  Adventure, Family, Fantasy  |  25 August 1939 (USA)
8.1
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.1/10 from 262,498 users   Metascore: 100/100
Reviews: 518 user | 209 critic | 4 from Metacritic.com

Dorothy Gale is swept away to a magical land in a tornado and embarks on a quest to see the Wizard who can help her return home.

Directors:

, (uncredited) , 3 more credits »

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay), 18 more credits »
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

ON DISC

"Hand of God" - What to Watch

IMDb sits down with the cast of the thriller drama "Hand of God," including Ron Perlman, Julian Morris, Garret Dillahunt, and Alona Tal.

Watch our interview

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 40 titles
created 07 May 2011
 
a list of 21 titles
created 05 Sep 2012
 
a list of 49 titles
created 01 Jan 2013
 
a list of 33 titles
created 1 month ago
 
a list of 36 titles
created 1 month ago
 

Related Items

Search for "The Wizard of Oz" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Wizard of Oz (1939)

The Wizard of Oz (1939) on IMDb 8.1/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Wizard of Oz.

User Polls

Top 250 Movies #193 | Won 2 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Animation | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Belle, whose father is imprisoned by the Beast, offers herself instead, unaware her captor to be an enchanted prince.

Directors: Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise
Stars: Paige O'Hara, Robby Benson, Jesse Corti
Adventure | Comedy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

While home sick in bed, a young boy's grandfather reads him a story called The Princess Bride.

Director: Rob Reiner
Stars: Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin, Robin Wright
The Lion King (1994)
Animation | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Lion cub and future king Simba searches for his identity. His eagerness to please others and penchant for testing his boundaries sometimes gets him into trouble.

Directors: Roger Allers, Rob Minkoff
Stars: Matthew Broderick, Jeremy Irons, James Earl Jones
Toy Story (1995)
Animation | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

A cowboy doll is profoundly threatened and jealous when a new spaceman figure supplants him as top toy in a boy's room.

Director: John Lasseter
Stars: Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Don Rickles
Animation | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

In order to power the city, monsters have to scare children so that they scream. However, the children are toxic to the monsters, and after a child gets through, two monsters realize things may not be what they think.

Directors: Pete Docter, David Silverman, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Billy Crystal, John Goodman, Mary Gibbs
Finding Nemo (2003)
Animation | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

After his son is captured in the Great Barrier Reef and taken to Sydney, a timid clownfish sets out on a journey to bring him home.

Directors: Andrew Stanton, Lee Unkrich
Stars: Albert Brooks, Ellen DeGeneres, Alexander Gould
Biography | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A woman leaves an Austrian convent to become a governess to the children of a Naval officer widower.

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: Julie Andrews, Christopher Plummer, Eleanor Parker
Drama | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

An angel helps a compassionate but despairingly frustrated businessman by showing what life would have been like if he never existed.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore
Toy Story 3 (2010)
Animation | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

The toys are mistakenly delivered to a day-care center instead of the attic right before Andy leaves for college, and it's up to Woody to convince the other toys that they weren't abandoned and to return home.

Director: Lee Unkrich
Stars: Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Joan Cusack
Family | Fantasy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A poor boy wins the opportunity to tour the most eccentric and wonderful candy factory of all.

Director: Mel Stuart
Stars: Gene Wilder, Jack Albertson, Peter Ostrum
Mary Poppins (1964)
Comedy | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A magic nanny comes to work for a cold banker's unhappy family.

Director: Robert Stevenson
Stars: Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke, David Tomlinson
Up (2009)
Animation | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

Seventy-eight year old Carl Fredricksen travels to Paradise Falls in his home equipped with balloons, inadvertently taking a young stowaway.

Directors: Pete Docter, Bob Peterson
Stars: Edward Asner, Jordan Nagai, John Ratzenberger
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Pat Walshe ...
Clara Blandick ...
...
Toto (as Toto)
The Singer Midgets ...
The Munchkins (as The Munchkins)
Edit

Storyline

In this charming film based on the popular L. Frank Baum stories, Dorothy and her dog Toto are caught in a tornado's path and somehow end up in the land of Oz. Here she meets some memorable friends and foes in her journey to meet the Wizard of Oz who everyone says can help her return home and possibly grant her new friends their goals of a brain, heart and courage. Written by Dale Roloff

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Mighty Miracle Show That Is the Talk of America! See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 August 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El mago de Oz  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,777,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$5,354,311 (USA) (6 November 1998)

Gross:

$22,202,612 (USA) (11 October 2013)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System: The Voice of Action)| (2005 re-issue)

Color:

(Kansas sequences) (1949 re-release)| (Kansas sequences) (1955 re-release)| (Sepiatone)| (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In Jim Steinmeyer's 2003 book "Hiding the Elephant: How Magicians Invented the Impossible and Learned to Disappear," he notes of Harry Kellar: "Kellar was almost certainly the inspiration for the wizened Wizard of Oz described by author L. Frank Baum; he was America's leading magician when Baum's book was written." See more »

Goofs

In the close-up shot that shows the wizard's guard crying, tears can be seen dripping from a device attached in his false eyebrow. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Dorothy: She isn't coming yet, Toto. Did she hurt you? She tried to, didn't she? Come on. We'll go tell Uncle Henry and Auntie Em.
See more »

Crazy Credits

As in some other M-G-M musicals of the '30's and '40's, the heading "Musical Program" appears at the top of the card listing all the music credits (arranger, composer, lyricist, conductor, choreographer, and so on). See more »

Connections

Referenced in Comedy Central Roast of James Franco (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

The Merry Old Land of Oz
(1939) (uncredited)
Lyrics by E.Y. Harburg
Music by Harold Arlen
Sung by Frank Morgan, Judy Garland, Ray Bolger, Jack Haley, Bert Lahr, and Emerald City workers
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A Wiz of a film, if ever a Wiz there was
11 August 2003 | by See all my reviews

The NBC Peacock began unfolding its wings. "The following program is brought to you in living color--with portions in black & white--on NBC." That exclusive intro began my exposure to color television at Grandma's in 1968. When Dorothy stepped out into Technicolor, I'll bet my eyes just popped.

This is the Movie of All Time, folks--a status achieved during its long run as a huge annual TV event during that classic era whose programs now show up on TV Land network. In the 1970s, Peter Marshall once read the answer on Hollywood Squares as to the program seen more times by more people than anything else ever shown on television. It was "Oz." Likewise, no movie has the hold on popular culture that this one does. What lion character ever since (i.e., Snagglepuss) hasn't been an impersonation of Bert Lahr going, "Put 'em up, put 'em uuuuup!"

Few musicals offer an equal combination of lovable music and engaging story. Perhaps "The Sound of Music." Hard to think of many Hollywood musicals where the story gets as serious as it does here when the Witch informs Dorothy that, "The last to go will see the first three go before her...and her mangy little dog too!" Yikes! In contrast, even the best of other Hollywood musicals seem to serve up fluffy, forgettable story lines that are mere backdrop to the song numbers that typically put the plot on hold.

I can't say that "Oz" doesn't have technical flaws or story element inconsistencies. It's just that the astonishing production values all around so overwhelm the shortcomings. The tornado sequence is a 1939 special effects tour de force--incredible. And the Nutcracker-quality musical score offers songs tastefully interwoven with the action. Certain numbers like "Merry Old Land of Oz," I never get tired off, though I like each of the songs.

Oz should be viewed in the lightness of spirit that it deserves. I mean look, we have Frank Morgan as the Emerald City gatekeeper, then seconds later as the cabbie with the Horse of a Different Color, then the Wizard's palace guard, and then the voice of fire-and-smoke Wizard of Oz who bellows, "Step forward, Tin Man!" What other film could put an actor go through 4 quick-changes within 10 minutes to such an endearing result? "Oz" is as magic as those sparkling ruby shoes.

The early Technicolor process utilized triple nitrate negative strips--separately recording each primary color in light. This was done due to the lack of a suitable "color film" in 1939. That would quickly change--but films from years following suffered from hues that faded with the years, even original negatives. Because "Oz" was actually filmed on a black-and-white base film, the negatives never faded. So now we have home videos/DVDs of breathtaking color quality. Now, the tinted filters in the cameras that separated the colors onto the negative strips meant that intense illumination was required, rendering the filming experience miserably hot for the actors involved, especially Lahr. But they all hold up amazingly well.

"Oz" has a valuable message. As the pop group America once said, "No, Oz never did give nothin' to the Tin Man....that he didn't, didn't already have." If we have truly search, we can find within us--or create through trial, like the Lion's courage--what we think we most lack. The Wizard (like the Lord) helps those who find help within themselves.

I feel sorry for the Almira Gulches who can't treasure this film experience. They need to visit the Emerald City to get their own ticking Testimonials and find their hearts.

Didn't bring your broomsticks with you? Well, I'm afraid you'll have to walk.


92 of 114 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
What would YOU ask the Wizard of Oz for? OliviaF
Why in the World would Dorothy want to go back to Kansas? Sylarfan626
So... Miss Gulch still has the paperwork aluminum_foil
Glinda's "real life" counterpart? justcallmepip
Sucidal Munchkin is it True or False? jacobstanleymoore
"Ding, Dong, the Witch Is Dead" -- What Happened to that Song and Scene? OldFilmLover
Discuss The Wizard of Oz (1939) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page