Saturday, September 21, 2013
Review: 'The Wizard of Oz' in IMAX 3-D
Last night, I watched The Wizard of Oz on a huge IMAX screen and in 3-D. As soon as the opening credits began, it was clear that this was going to be a very different experience than watching it in my bedroom on Blu-ray.
The movie has never looked better. It looks so much clearer and sharper than any other version of the movie I've seen. You can see every Munchkin's face, you can see every sequin on Dorothy's shoes, and you can see amazing texture on the Scarecrow's face, the Lion's hair, and even Dorothy's dress. It's incredible to be able to watch the movie and be able to see every detail.
I was very skeptical about the 3-D going into it. The movie is 75 years old. Most new movies that are converted in 3-D don't even look good (i.e. this year's Man of Steel). I am very happy to say though, that the 3-D here is stunning. All of the flat, painted backdrops have been given depth and volume, giving us an effect similar to a pop-up book. The first shot we see of the Emerald City is beautiful in 3-D, and the transition from sepia into color is much more effective in 3-D. The Wicked Witch was also much scarier with the added dimension. The scene where she appears in the roof and threatens the trio is more intense. She looks like she is right in your face and her hand is so close it could touch you.
I noticed a lot of things watching this version of the movie that I've never noticed before, like a lot of the Munchkins aren't enthusiastic at all and look like they're about to fall asleep, just waving their hands left and right pretending to sing. It was much more obvious that the Scarecrow isn't moving his mouth at all when he meets Dorothy for the first time, and yes, it was much clearer that there is no hanging munchkin and that it's just a bird wandering around in the background! I heard a few whispers from the people behind me when that scene came along.
The Wizard of Oz in IMAX 3-D is the definitive way to experience the classic, so if you have the opportunity to see it this way, see it! It's pure magic.
Get tickets here.