BFI Classics: The Wizard Of Oz

Author: Salman Rushdie

There have been many notable guest writers in the BFI Classics series.  Mark Kermode has put in two himself so far, Richard Dyer too has had his say. Actor Simon Callow (whom you may expect to write on Orson Welles, actually turned one in for Night of the Hunter – our last review). This time round (and an early addition to the series) sees Salman Rushdie put words to paper for The Wizard of Oz.

The book splits into two main area. The first Rushdie titles ‘A Short text About Magic’ which is actually the bulk of the book. The second chapter is ‘At the Auction of the Ruby Slippers.’ Which has Rushdie at the real life auction that saw the slippers sold for a pretty penny.

Rushdie clearly has a strong affection for the film. In his opening he reminisces about his first essay that took its title from the film. The essay of this film is brief but usually to the point, and looks at the stage antics, what must have been perceived as hi-tech effects sequences and iconic scenes and shots from the piece.

Steven Hurst

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