The Wizard of Oz-Classic Terror

Wizard of OZ movie poster
Wizard of OZ movie poster (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I read a delightful post yesterday. It touched a nerve though. There is no terror greater than the fears of children. As Stephen Edwards points out, childhood fear defies reason. It shakes a kid to the core and follows them like a shadow.

What Me Worry?

That post of childhood worries brought back memories of fears that my sister had when she was 5 years old.

We grew up in New England yet my sister feared tornadoes. Not a simple fear. Not a rational fear, because tornadoes don’t live in New England. Actually, terror was a more fitting description.

As soon as our skies would darken and thunder rumbled, my sister was overcome. Her trembling was often accompanied by vomiting. Where in the world did her fear come from?

The Wizard of Oz, famed classic for children, was the culprit.

There are many “kids” films that I would not recommend for children and The Wizard of Oz tops my list.

Finding Nemo may have portrayed the real-life likelihood of fish becoming prey BUT I think it is also a film only for kids over 7 years old. The opening segment contains too many ideas better kept from small children. Kids should not be worrying about the mortality of their parents when they are little. Finding Nemo brings up that very subject. Bambi and Land Before Time are also on my “not before 8” list for the same theme. Just because a film is produced by Disney does not mean it is good for children. When you think about the stories brought to movies for the kids of today, the kids of yesterday, could only access them once they were old enough to read them. I therefore recommend being vigilant “pre-screeners” of the content of children’s movies.

We are the guardians of innocence for kids. Let’s help them keep it for as long as possible.

9 thoughts on “The Wizard of Oz-Classic Terror

    1. Fairy tales are another great example of “not for kids” material. When the news comes on the TV , sometimes I stumble over the kids as I race to change it. The graphic stories of child abductions and murders are NOT for kids. Another blog post is ruminating about “Be careful Who is Listening” when we watch the news and when adults talk to each other too.

  1. I completely agree. For me, I was terrified of the flying monkeys. And I’m not going to let my almost five-year-old watch any of the Disney movies for a while, either. Once you get those images in your head, you can’t erase them. It’s why I don’t watch the news. But I’m currently reading The Wonderful Wizard of Oz to him, and it hasn’t been scary at all. What a great book! But skip the movie until WAY older.

  2. So true. My son had night terrors and couldn’t watch most of the Disney movies. Lion King…terrifying! We were stuck with Barney. As much as I hated that purple dinosaur at least he didn’t cause any bad dreams (well maybe for me, but not my son)
    We still him about the time I bought “The Tigger Movie” he cried and cried.
    The girlfriends like this story because they think he’s sensitive (to this day he won’t watch that movie, he’salmost 18)

    1. LOL…I’ve had those “adult ” Barney dreams too!
      My son saw Child’s Play(rated R), without my permission, when he was 10. He won’t sleep in any bedroom (to this day, at 29) that contains any dolls. Hope he screens his girlfriends for any potential doll collectors! Thanks for your comment.~Susan

  3. Teresa Cleveland Wendel

    The Disney film that gave me reason to pause after I took the kids to see it was Snow White–when the queen transformed into a witch. Scary!

  4. It seems all the Disney movies either feature children with one or zero parents having experienced loss at an early age. I agree this isn’t something that little ones should be mulling over, but I think the children in the movies are the “action heroes,” and there has to be some explanation as to why their parents aren’t protecting them or providing for them, so Disney kills the parents off.

    My childhood fears were from watching the “Twilight Zone.” My parents encouraged me to go to my room if it was too scary, but I could still hear the TV from there, plus I was alone in my room. Better to be scared in the living room near my parents.

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