Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Expect MAGIC Much?

Amid the myriad of potentially problematic elements or moments of the MGM movie The Wizard of OZ, one always stood out to me.

The Wicked Witch of the West turns over an hourglass and tells Dorothy that’s how long she has to live. The trio of misfits who befriended Dorothy come to her rescue... but once she leaves the room, the hourglass is still running. Dorothy leaves and lives. Wait, so, if she exits the spell is broken? I thought she’d die when it ran out!

Well, that’s what I thought. I’d expressed this “hole” to many folks and made said folks ponder. Why is it that Dorothy still lives?

Then, over the weekend, I told this dilemma to Bart’s Aunt. Instead of suddenly wondering why, she presented her viewpoint on the matter. She has a very logical solution. And chances are she’s right.

It’s not that there’s a spell on the hourglass. Rather when the sand runs out, the Witch will come back and take care of Dorothy herself.  After all, she's seen with it and throws it at them so she's been back to the room.  Makes a lot more sense, no?

So what had I (and the others I’d infected) been thinking? That she’s a witch, so she’d use magic to exact revenge. Thus, it follows that the hourglass would be enchanted with the death sentence.

But apparently not.

Funny how we get locked into believing/expecting certain things.
I suppose I just wanted the Wicked Witch to have more power than she does.


ZZOzturk said...

Elphaba (sorry I've read Wicked) is a very hands on person. I would definitely agree with Bart's aunt. I've always understood it as she will be back to take care of Dorothy herself. She mentions that one needs to use care when extracting the slippers so I don't think she'd fling some die while I'm away geas. It's fun to ponder though.

Anon said...

It never even occurred to me that there was a spell on the hourglass. Once I realized what was going on I thought she was PREPARING a spell that would kill Dorothy without harming the magic ruby slippers.

But you're right--there are some things in movies that aren't so that a young mind might THINK are so anyway. Case in point: in Jurassic Park, when Lex and Tim are eating the desserts (just before the raptors enter), I thought that it was them STARING at each other that BROUGHT the raptors--I was just reminded of what Grant had said earlier in the movie about raptors: "You stare at him, and he just stares right back. And that's when the attack comes...." I thought we were seeing an example of that.