LABYRINTH
1986, Sony Repertory, 101 min, UK, USA, Dir: Jim Henson

David Bowie and a young Jennifer Connelly star in this tour de force of live-action puppetry. Fifteen-year-old Sarah (Connelly), angry with her little brother, wishes him away to the imaginary land of the Goblin King from her favorite book. Her musings take physical form and she is granted 13 hours to rescue him from the phantasmagoric realm of her own creation, lest the boy become a goblin forever.


THE WIZARD OF OZ
1939, Warner Bros., 101 min, USA, Dir: Victor Fleming

Judy Garland is Dorothy in this sublime, candy-colored adaptation of L. Frank Baum’s children’s favorite, one of the most beloved film classics of all time. Take a surreal stroll down the Yellow Brick Road with Dorothy as she encounters the Tin Man (Jack Haley), the Scarecrow (Ray Bolger), the Cowardly Lion (Bert Lahr), Glinda the Good Witch (Billie Burke), the Wicked Witch of the West (Margaret Hamilton) and the title character (Frank Morgan), whose full name is Oscar Zoroaster Phadrig Isaac Norman Henkle Emmannuel Ambroise Diggs.


THE THIEF OF BAGDAD (1924)
1924, Warner Bros., 155 min, USA, Dir: Raoul Walsh

Raoul Walsh performs a high-wire act as director and comes out the winner in this magical melange of fantasy and fun. Working with his good friend, actor-producer Douglas Fairbanks, proved a match made in Hollywood heaven. Walsh's fine, realistic tone keeps Fairbanks in check as the actor tries again and again to go for physical hijinks and enough balletic action to take the audience's breath away. There are special effects galore, some of them straight from Walsh's imagination. Production design by the great William Cameron Menzies adds just the right zing to Fairbanks' and Walsh's vision in this tale about a clever thief named Ahmed who steals the heart of a princess and must win her love in the end. It's an Arabian Nights fantasy that Walsh infuses with gusto and bravado. The sets are sumptuous and the characters deliciously entertaining in this landmark silent film, one of the highlights of Walsh's earlier career. Also featuring the seductive Anna May Wong and a beautiful Julanne Johnston. Originally premiered at the Egyptian Theatre!


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