What Pearl Adds to The Wizard of Oz Horror Legacy
In 2004, Bravo’s 100 Scariest Movie Moments class The Wizard of Oz at #86 on its countdown. Among the various talking heads, the director Stuart Gordon and the Coors Light Twins agreed that the film gave many children nightmares. Before soaring above the rainbow, a tornado swirls around the flat Kansas landscape. Creepy costumed flying monkeys band together in the sky to catch innocent people. And there’s a shrill, cackling green witch who threatens to destroy the hopeful, whimsical story. It’s easy to see how the 1939 classic could spawn a lasting horror legacy. The timeless status of the 1939 film gives it fuel to illuminate a demented world. Director Ti Westit is pearl (2022) uses elements of the 1939 classic to present a twisted homage. Judy Garland‘s Dorothy has made friends along her magical journey. mia goth‘s Pearl destroys relationships as she descends into chaos.
The Wizard of Oz welcomes audiences to a sepia-toned world with the iconic “main title” in the opening credits. The opening score of pearl (Tyler Bates and Tim Williams) is equally hopeful and romantic, inviting the audience into Pearl’s headspace. The barn doors open like the curtains of a theatre. Moments later, the spotlight slips right into Pearl’s inner life. Everything goes dark except for a spotlight on her. Then his mother Ruth (While Wright) bursts in, rushing her daughter into a single room. It could be a while in ounces. After the house lands, Dorothy (Judy Garland) steps outside, out of a sepia world and into the lush colors of Munchkinland. The transition is seamless, in one take. For Pearl, the switch is just as important. Her mother, or reality in general, will always interfere with the girl’s ambitions.
Various beloved characters from Oz are tainted due to the emphasis on reality over fantasy. Director Ari Aster proclaimed his film Midsommar be “Wizard of Oz for the perverts. Few knew what was coming pearl. In ouncesScarecrow (Ray Bolger) sings “If only I had a brain,” while shaky legs move him around as if trying to hold his ground during an earthquake on waxed floor. There is no brain or life in the Scarecrow Pearl encounters. To her, the scarecrow is a sex toy with bulging eyes and a top hat that she wears on her own head.
Many aspects of the wizard (Frank Morgan) can be seen in the Projectionist Theater (David Corenswet). The projectionist is proud to live like a wanderer, without ever settling in the same place. Pearl idolizes this and mumbles about how dreamlike it feels. “As long as I can stop myself from waking up,” concludes the projectionist. Dreams, fantasy and the inevitable crash of reality. He doesn’t need to make any promises to Pearl, he’s already ravished her. But he continues. He shows Pearl the magical wonders of porn movies. Like the projectionist, the wizard’s Kansas counterpart, Professor Marvel, is also a wanderer, rummaging through Dorothy’s purse to make her appear like a bona fide fortune teller. Like the magician, the projectionist is only a man. Dorothy attaches her only means of escape from Kansas on Marvel, then from Oz on the Wizard. Pearl too, hoping the projectionist will take her on his trips abroad. The wizard wasn’t that big or that powerful, and neither was the projectionist: he fell victim to Pearl’s pitchfork when he discovered the girl was dangerous.
In the final minutes, Pearl’s husband, Howard (Alistair Sewell) returns from the war, just in time to see what’s for dinner. There is a grim sight of her dead in-laws, leaning around the table. But that doesn’t horrify him too much. Howard will remain by his wife’s side for many decades to come. It is none other than the Cowardly Lion (Bert Lahr), as someone who decides to submit to Pearl’s dark urges. Howard will do this until his death in 1979 in X (2022). He will help clear bodies and trap new victims. Unlike the lion, he does not deserve a triple cross for his courage.
Iron man (Jack Haley) has its fair share of dark variations. In pearlthe titular character’s father (Matthew Sunderland) is trapped in full-body paralysis. Because of this, it turns him into a tin man who lost his oil can. “You’re still here ?” Pearl asks, pointing his face as if observing a human-shaped envelope, not A parent. She reaches out to grab his throat and constricts her breathing. She lets go, but her eventual death is inevitable. Although he’s not so much a caretaker as Uncle Henry (Charley Grapewin), the two men avoid conflict at all costs. The difference being that Henry does it while being able to do more to help his niece; Pearl’s father cannot, suffering from terrible health.
As for Pearl’s mother, Ruth, she is a harshly stern Aunt Em (Clara Blandick) and her daughter’s personal Wicked Witch of the West (Margaret Hamilton). Dinner with this family is never a fun experience. At first, Ruth is dry over the dinner table: “I will not allow you to wander around in senseless fantasies and hide from your responsibilities any longer. It’s a sign of weakness, and your father and I didn’t raise you to be weak. This strict message furthers the friction between the two. Like a tornado sweeping through Kansas, bad weather turns into another evening meal that goes to hell. Lightning flashes wildly as Ruth verbally attacks Pearl. When Ruth is pushed too close to the fireplace, the flames engulf her dress, soon her whole body. The “witch” must be sprinkled. Pearl finds the nearest thing, throwing over boiling water from a pot. Ruth does not melt, she is left with fatal burns. But how bad is she really?
This mother is at her wit’s end. She cries to sleep. Ruth explains that Pearl gets what she wanna isn’t important, “making the most of what you have is.” While Dorothy is thrilled to learn this, Pearl despises him. “Maliciousness smolders in you, I see it!” she said to her daughter. Even though Pearl aspires to be a nice girl like Dorothy, she’s just not cut out for it. In Back to Oz (1985), Dorothee (Fairouza Balk) insists on visiting Oz, which gets her admitted to a mental hospital. This young girl should not be psychologically evaluated — Pearl definitely should! Unlike Dorothy, in 1985 or 1939, Pearl has no one to turn to. She is selfish, so stuck in her head that she uses people to empower herself and boost her confidence. When she loses their attention, she acts violently and recklessly.
Thanks to the costume, Pearl’s blue overalls resemble Dorothy Gale’s blue gingham dress. The film quickly disrupts this. Pearl kills and feeds a goose to her own Toto in the form of the loyal alligator Theda, living on the property. Pearl’s body count means Theda’s belly won’t be empty anytime soon. At the end of the film, the wardrobe changes. Pearl pursues her sister-in-law Mitsy (Emma JenkinsPurro), wearing the silver shoes from L. Frank Baum’s original literature. The only bruise left on Pearl is a knot in her hair. There are no ruby slippers; instead, Pearl wears a ruby red dress by Ruth. Mitsy’s feet fail him in the frantic attempt to get away. Her golden locks might look like Glinda (Billie Burk), but what the sister-in-law best represents is the innocence that Pearl clings to desperately. Now it’s Mitsy, whom Pearl kills and dismembers.
At the end of pearl, there is no callback. In this case, no barn door call to close the movie as it opened. The sweeping score, its hopeful melody gets eerie the longer the end credits get. There on the screen, the doors of the barn do not close, reassuring the fantasy. It’s Pearl, seeing her husband at home. She can no longer hide what is happening. As The Wizard of Oz, she embarks on a journey of self-discovery. Dorothy decided to enjoy a worldly life, surrounded by people she knew cared about her. Not only is Pearl stuck on the farm and knows she likes to kill, but Howard is the only one left. She attempted to escape, but violent explosions trapped her in a purgatory of her own making. Like a Kansas farmer once did, Pearl realizes there’s no better place than home.