Return To Oz

Return to Oz was a horror film made in the 80's, starring a creepy porcelain doll of a girl, and produced by Disney.

Great. I leave for just a few weeks and the whole place goes to shit.

Just The Facts

  1. You found this page because this movie scared the shit out of you as a child.
  2. This was Fairuza Balk's first starring role. Later, she would grow up and star in The Craft.
  3. One of the creepiest Disney films ever made, possibly even more than Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Escape to Witch Mountain, or David Lynch's The Straight Story (yes, David Lynch made a Disney movie).
  4. Several animators were involved in this film who would go on to do big things, including Will Vinton Studios of California Raisins fame (the studio is now Laika).
  5. Another animator who got his start on this film: Henry Selick, who despite popular belief, directed Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas... and Coraline.
  6. Like Coraline, this film is based on classic ideas, made creepy, for children.

Plot


Dorothy's grandparents are tired of hearing her talk about Oz, so they take her to a mental hosptial for shock therapy. Dorothy is rescued and taken to Oz, where she meets up with her pet chicken. They discover that the Yellow Brick Road is destroyed, everyone is headless and turned to stone, and sales tax has gone up. Everything has gone wrong, and Oz's fate is left to Dorothy.

Relation to Other Oz Media

Original Frank L Baum books

Return to Oz is actually closer to the original books than the more well-known film, The Wizard of Oz (although the rights were bought to use the film's ruby slippers, since the slippers in the book were silver, but the ruby slippers were more iconic).

In particular, the film is based on The Marvelous Land of Oz, and Ozma of Oz.

MGM Film

It is an unofficial sequel to this film, but don't let the illegitimate tone of that make you think this film is lacking. Were you afraid of the flying monkeys? Of course you were. Unless you're a communist/terrorist/thing Americans fear.

But did that film have dramatic, creepy, affective music? An overall sense of doom? Maybe an assortment of creepy characters? A man with a pumpkin head who calls Dorothy "mom"? Headless villains? A Culture Club cover band on wheels? Fuck flying monkeys. This movie has Dorothy in a mental hospital, where screams can be heard coming from far away. A desert that turns you into sand. A rock that eats people. Did I mention the fabulous dudes on wheels?

If You Watched This as a Child, You Were Scared of at Least One of These Things

  • The Wheelers
    80's new wave band from hell, somehow trapped in Oz.

The Safety Dance is now stuck in your head.
Didn't they do a tour with Men Without Hats?

Mombi
Evil princess of Oz. Collects heads in a hall, and switches them with her own, like fashion accessories. I'd like to spend a day with her at Forever XXI.


I definitely couldn't not run out of the room at this part as a child. FUCK.
This can't not creep out a kid.

  • The Gump
    Some people were also afraid of The Gump. They're kind of in the minority.

life is like a... nevermind.
(Toke) ...'Ere...