The Wizard of Oz got here out greater than 80 years in the past, however there should nonetheless be a number of amongst us who bear in mind seeing it within the theater. Solely they might have felt fully the ability of its well-known scene when Dorothy leaves black-and-white Kansas and enters the colourful land of Oz. A lot of the ability of artwork comes from distinction, and this explicit distinction might hardly have been a extra persuasive commercial for the ability of Technicolor. After a growth historical past of greater than twenty years, that coloration motion-picture course of had by 1939 reached the stage of its technological evolution referred to as “Course of 4,” which enabled studios to utilize not just a few however all the spectrum.
This closing type of Technicolor enraptures viewers even as we speak, reproducing colours because it did at intense, typically borderline-psychedelic depths of saturation. The method discovered its perfect materials within the fantasy of The Wizard of Oz, with its yellow brick highway (selecting whose precise shade impressed a couple of week of deliberation at MGM), its ruby slippers (calculatedly modified from the silver footwear in L. Frank Baum’s authentic novel), and its host of settings and characters with nice chromatic potential.
You may recognize this un-repeatably fortuitous intersection of content material and expertise once more in these scenes from an unofficial 4K restoration of the movie posted by Youtuber Oriel Malik.
That is absolutely the sharpest and most-detail wealthy model of The Wizard of Oz most of us have seen, and, in these respects, it really outdoes the unique prints of the movie. For some the picture may very well be too clear, making apparent because it does sure artificial-looking elements of the backgrounds and costumes. However in a way this may increasingly not run counter to the intentions of the filmmakers, who knew full effectively what style they have been working in: even on movie, a musical should retain a minimum of a few of the feel and appear of the stage. But it’s additionally true that the softer visible edges of the up to date analog printing and projection applied sciences would have enhanced the dreamlike environment created partly by all these surreally vivid hues — which, in line with die-hard Technicolor fanatics, solely actually come via on movie anyway.
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Primarily based in Seoul, Colin Marshall writes and broadcasts on cities, language, and tradition. His tasks embody the Substack e-newsletter Books on Cities, the ebook The Stateless Metropolis: a Stroll via Twenty first-Century Los Angeles and the video collection The Metropolis in Cinema. Observe him on Twitter at @colinmarshall, on Fb, or on Instagram.