Lynch/Oz is a documentary film directed and written by Alexandre O. Philippe that explores the influence of the movie The Wizard of Oz (1939) on the American filmmaker David Lynch.
The concept for the film originates from a response Lynch gave during a Q&A panel at the 2001 New York Film Festival following a screening of his film Mulholland Drive. When asked about the impact of Fleming's film on his work, Lynch said, "There is not a day that goes by that I don't think about The Wizard of Oz.
The film examines the influence of Victor Fleming's 1939 film The Wizard of Oz on the work of American filmmaker David Lynch. Through six distinct perspectives, and narrated by some of contemporary cinema's most exciting voices, Lynch/Oz takes us down the proverbial rabbit hole and helps us re-experience and re-interpret The Wizard of Oz by way of David Lynch, to deliver a whole new appreciation for Lynch's symbolism through the lens of his greatest influence.
The documentary is structured in idiosyncratic chapters, and it weaves together hundreds of clips to find fascinating parallels between Lynch's work and The Wizard of Oz. The accumulation of quotes and ideas can be overwhelming at times, but Philippe strikes a balance between the mesmerizing, endlessly fascinating constructions of the David Lynch Cinematic Universe and the durability of the powerful spell on moviemaking enjoyed for decades by The Wizard of Oz. The result is a visually hypnotic, challenging, and intellectually admirable experience that is essential viewing for movie fans. Lynch/Oz is really a fascinating experience that cleverly weaves together the themes, images, and cultural vernacular of The Wizard of Oz with Lynch's art and filmography.
Lynch/Oz is visually hypnotic, challenging, and intellectually admirable, and it offers a whole new appreciation for Lynch's symbolism through the lens of his most significant influence. I found it interesting that the documentary is both dead-serious about its subjects and playfully exploratory, and it offers varied, compelling, and evocative explorations of Lynch's craft and thought processes. One of the strengths of this documentary is how it frames movies as permeable membranes that flicker between personal obsession and the collective unconscious. The film finds fascinating parallels everywhere, suggesting that our dreams and nightmares have never been as far apart as they seem.
Overall, the documentary is a broadly entertaining analysis of the relationship between American cinema's most beloved fantasy and its most famous surrealist. I found it to be a fascinating experience that cleverly weaves together the themes, images, and cultural vernacular of The Wizard of Oz with Lynch's art and filmography. For better or worse, the 109-minute essay doc often feels like an anthology of thematically-connected shorts, all of which concern I honestly did not have any idea of David Lynch’s recurring fascination with the classic 1939 movie adaptation of The Wizard of Oz but this doc did help me to make sense of a lot of his work While some talking points tend to be belabored and others don’t get unpacked at great enough length, Lynch/Oz still offers movie lovers a variety of thoughtful and dynamic new ways of seeing Lynch’s work.
In my opinion, the documentary is a fascinating exploration of Lynch's craft and thought processes, and it offers a whole new appreciation for Lynch's symbolism through the lens of his greatest influence. I am a massive fan of Lynch’s filmography and I will always watch anything that is related to him. So, needless to say, this is a must-see for fans of Lynch's work and for anyone interested in the relationship between cinema's most beloved fantasy and its most famous surrealist.