In the movie The Wizard of Oz there were three types of lighting techniques used. Traditional three point camera was used to bring the color of the film in and capture the audience and bring them into the fantasy and the awesome color that will transport them there. The second is the High-Key Lighting to bring out the happiness in the film and then the Low-Key lighting to bring in the darkness of the scene such as when the witch is with her crystal ball and talking sinister thoughts.
One of the best notable techniques was at the beginning of the film and according to Stophyski, ” just the absence of color in the beginning (and ending) of the movie help to set the mood and overall feeling for Dorothy when she is in Kansas, and the issues and lack of ‘color’ that she faces there” (The Wizard of Oz-Editing Techniques, 2010). The scene of where Dorothy enters technicolor will show the affect that this will have on the audience.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x6D8PAGelN8.
High-Key lighting is mostly used in this film and according to Evelynayala, “The bright lighting technique helps to rid the film of dark shadows for a lighter and happier feel to the movie without being overwhelmingly brilliant. The benefits to this lighting in a movie like The Wizard of Oz, is to help create a dream like fantasy world to the audience (Evelynayala, 2015). Most of the film is very colorful and brings out the good in the movie to give it a more happy feel to the audience.
Low-Key lighting was used in the darker scenes such as all the wicked witch scenes. According to Arvizu, ( Low-key lighting accentuates the contours of an object by throwing areas into shade, while a fill light or reflector may illuminate the shadow areas to control contrast), (Arvizu, 1939). Low-Key lighting will bring a sinister feel to the movie and a feel of suspense to the audience.
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The benefits of the style of each lighting help brings out the feelings in the audience that makes the movie comes to a full circle with all the exhilaration of the lighting bringing out each emotion. Each technique used in this film contributed to how the writer wanted an audience to perceive it. To the lighting techniques were suited to the fantasy genre and according to Arvizu,”This creates not only a family friendly based theme, but with the genre and the use of the lighting techniques, it allows the viewers to get drawn into the movie”(Arvizu, 1939). You can see this for yourself when you watch this from YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vkZcYMy85lY.
I truly believe that if the lighting had changed it would have changed the entire affect it played on the audience. If it had been all low-key then a more sinister plot and would have changed the whole outlook on the film. It was never meant to be that type of movie and all the lighting that was used in this film made it great as it is today.
Arvizu, A. (1939, February 25). Category Archives: Uncategorized. Retrieved March 5, 2015, from https://arvizuanthony.wordpress.com/category/uncategorized/
Dorothy entering Technicolor. (2010, October 19). Retrieved March 5, 2015, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x6D8PAGelN8
Richards, E. E. (2014, October 2). Cinematography of the Wizard of Oz. Retrieved from EvanERichards.com: http://evanerichards.com/2011/1243
The Wizard of Oz – Editing Techniques. (2010, May 5). Retrieved March 5, 2015, from https://mvccfilm.wordpress.com/2010/05/05/thewizardofoz/
Week 2 The Wizard of Oz: Lighting Techniques Blog. (2015, February 4). Retrieved March 5, 2015, from https://evelynayalasimon.wordpress.com/2015/02/04/week-2-the-wizard-of-oz-lighting-techniques-blog/