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To those seeing "The Wiz" for the first time...


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filmlover -

It is a relief to me to know that you can try to rinse the bad taste from your brain after seeing "The Wiz" with a Holiday viewing of "1776" if only to confirm that one could make a good musical in the '70s. I know it is on my agenda for the Fourth. (I prefer the unreconstructed version I have on tape to the DVD version.)

 

Go get it off the shelf right now. Don't make me say to you -

 

"Good God! What in Hell are you waiting for?"

 

Kyle in Hollywood

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It is a relief to me to know that you can try to rinse the bad taste from your brain after seeing "The Wiz" with a Holiday viewing of "1776" if only to confirm that one could make a good musical in the '70s.

 

Kyle, you're right, I'm not going to piddle, twiddle, and resolve. It's time to start a thread about it.

 

(I prefer the unreconstructed version I have on tape to the DVD version.)

 

To paraphrase John Adams in 1776, "Would you whip it and beat it 'til you break its spirit?! I tell you that DVD is a masterful expression of the American mind."

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  • 13 years later...

No one may ever see this, but I am extremely disappointed in this forum. I can not see who posted these comments but as a black female, these comments seem racist. If you are black, the symbolism of four joyful characters parading through a dystopian society is uplifting. And if you have an eye for creative and abstract production you will be able to see how beautiful this film is. The choreography and score is impeccable. But it is key to remember this is a MOVIE where directors have creative license and movie magic at their dispense. A play and movie are not comparable when it comes to The Wiz. Yes the film is dark and the set is depressing, but keep in mind the time period the film was made and the message the film displays. As for the somewhat provocative scenes, they are all symbolic in their own way. Particularly the scene where the dancers are “naked”. That scene was meant to show freedom and what better way to show that then by removing their horrendous costumes. Yes they had on little clothing, but they are not butt naked and you should be thinking of the what the dancers are singing about instead of how naked they are. All in all this film is a proud piece of African- American culture. If you can get past several small aspects of the film (that are actually important to the movie) then you will see this movie is GOOD. Maybe for some it is hard to truly see how classic and impactful this movie is, but the movie, cast, choreography, and overall production of this movie are not bad. Yes the movie is abstract. But to me, it seems many of these comments were made out of underlying racist thoughts and interpretations. Many of you should feel ashamed that you can even bring your fingers to type such horrible things about such a timeless, powerful, and historically important film.

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Well Ker, first of all, this thread you found is about 14 years old and EVERYONE who contributed their thoughts to it hasn't been around these parts for YEARS now! ONE of 'em I know for a fact died a few years back.

And so, please don't wag your finger at those of us here TODAY and tell us that "many of you should feel ashamed that you can bring your fingers to type such horrible things about such a timeless, powerful and historically important film", IF you would be so kind.

And secondly, and regarding the very film ITSELF in question here, could you then please explain to the assembled here TODAY why The Wiz has a IMDb rating of only 5.4 AND a Rotten Tomato rating of a mere 42% IF this film is so damn great???

And I REALLY doubt that it might be because 58% of the reviewers of it and/or of those who took the time to rate the movie were blatant or even covert "racists"!

(...and so what's your answer here, Ker?...OR, are you gonna be another one of those "One Post Wonders" around here who post but ONCE in order to get something off their chest and then never to be heard from again?)

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And the problem with the movie wasn't its "white director".  

There are MANY white directors who could have handled the movie more competently than Sidney Lumet.

In fact, the necroposter might want to look back and see that the OP's comments in starting the thread were not "racial", but "Lord, what a mess."

I also take exception to 1776 being the "only" good musical to come out of the 70's...Ahem, any other big musicals come out in The Wiz's 1978?  (And no, Dargo, I was not talking about "Sgt. Pepper".)

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Occasionally I look at the TCM Remembers short films on YouTube and I remember too.  I was unhappy when MICHAEL JACKSON died that he was excluded from the tribute.  Love it or leave it, THE WIZ was a significant film appearance... 

 

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It was weird reading old comments on this movie from members no longer around. I very much liked MarkP's & Kyle's intelligent comments. But the rest of it goes to show there have always been wankers on this board.

I watched this movie for the first time a few years ago and had mixed feelings about it. I very much enjoyed the dancing & the inventive sets & locations. The costuming & make up ranged from fun & unique to silly overdone. I didn't like the songs at all, but hey that's just my opinion. 

I disliked Diana Ross & Nipsy but thought Michael Jackson was a standout. He seems brimming full of talent & star power but somehow I sensed insecure vulnerability from him.

You know, I'm going to give this a second watch. I'm sure it's always a little disappointing first viewing any re-make of an iconic  movie.

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Ker may be a one-post wonder, but at least her one-post take was refreshing, IMO. 99.9% of all one-post wonders around here are either "TCM showed a movie that came out after 1960. Why oh why can't it be like it used to be when Robert Osborne hand-picked all the movies?" or "Some host on TCM said that somebody or something in the last 100 years was racist or not PC, and they're WRONG! Why oh why can't TCM be like it used to Robert Osborne wrote all his own commentaries?"

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6 hours ago, TikiSoo said:

I disliked Diana Ross & Nipsy but thought Michael Jackson was a standout. He seems brimming full of talent & star power but somehow I sensed insecure vulnerability from him.

You know, I'm going to give this a second watch. I'm sure it's always a little disappointing first viewing any re-make of an iconic  movie.

But then we got the Michael Jackson of the 80's, and...you know the rest.  😔

A quick look at why Moonwalker (1988) seemed on paper like a license to print money, but never played US theaters, should answer any questions about his acting career, and, lord help us, directing career:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Od8aWyYL7q4   (Let's just say, remember how we never saw much of Paul McCartney as an actor after "Give My Regards to Broad Street"?)

Nipsey Russell was still a recognized staple from 70's "Match Game", and seemed like the only actor who was "in" on the Wiz movie enough not to be miscast, apart from Jacko's moves, Rich's Wizard and Lena Horne's Glinda.

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It's no Wizard of Oz, but its still a rather fun time to be had. Nipsey Russell and ted Ross were great fun, it was a pleasure to see Lena Horne again, and Mabel King was darkly amusing as the Wicked Witch. Plus those sets are great.

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I vaguely remember Eddie Murphy lambasted Garrett Morris for playing the king of the winged monkeys, saying things like, "A black man playing a monkey ... what did he possibly think he was doing for us a culture while he was taking home his paycheck?" Years later, a bitter Morris pointed out Murphy made hundreds of millions for providing the voice for a donkey. 

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22 hours ago, sewhite2000 said:

Ker may be a one-post wonder, but at least her one-post take was refreshing, IMO. 99.9% of all one-post wonders around here are either "TCM showed a movie that came out after 1960. Why oh why can't it be like it used to be when Robert Osborne hand-picked all the movies?" or "Some host on TCM said that somebody or something in the last 100 years was racist or not PC, and they're WRONG! Why oh why can't TCM be like it used to Robert Osborne wrote all his own commentaries?"

Yeah, a valid point I suppose.

(...oh and btw...two days and counting since Ker posted her complaint and yet still no follow-up reply from her...yep, it appears we had another One Post Wonder here)

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21 hours ago, EricJ said:

(Let's just say, remember how we never saw much of Paul McCartney as an actor after "Give My Regards to Broad Street"?)

 

Well, really.....

Didn't see much of him as an actor IN "Give My Regards To Broad Street".  B)

Sepiatone

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