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The themes, images, and cultural vernacular of Victor Fleming’s The Wizard of Oz continue to haunt David Lynch’s filmography—from his early short The Alphabet to his recent television series Twin Peaks: The Return. Arguably, no filmmaker has so consistently drawn inspiration—consciously or unconsciously—from a single work. Is Lynch trapped in the Land of Oz? If so, what can we learn about his body of work by taking a closer look at how it intersects and communicates with that legendary fantasy? In turn, what do Lynch’s films have to say about the enduring resonance of one of America’s most beloved classics? Through six distinct perspectives, Alexandre O. Philippe’s Lynch/Oz helps us reexperience and reinterpret The Wizard of Oz by way of David Lynch, delivering new appreciations of both.

Picture 8/10

Alexandre O. Philippe's Lynch/Oz comes to Blu-ray through Criterion's Janus Contemporaries line. The film is assembled primarily with footage from other movies alongside archival interview footage featuring Lynch. It features multiple aspect ratios ranging from 1.33:1 to 2.39:1, including the full 16x9 1.78:1 widescreen ratio. It is presented with a 1080p/24hz high-definition digital encode on a dual-layer disc.

Since the film is comprised of footage from other sources, the presentation ultimately comes down to the quality of the film and interview clips, and then the final encode. Interview clips with Lynch range from VHS quality to high-definition digital, while most film clips (most of which come from Lynch's films and The Wizard of Oz) all look to have been sourced from recent 4K restorations. A handful of movies (like Three Men and a Baby) look to have had clips sourced from standard-definition DVDs.

The encode itself is good if imperfect. Funny enough, clips from Mulholland Dr. and Eraserhead look better here compared to how the films look on Criterion's respective Blu-ray editions. There are instances where the image can look a little noisy, though it's sometimes hard to ascertain whether this has to do with the encoding or the clips themselves. For example, some clips from E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial look pretty noisy, while film clips that bookend them look fine, so they could be baked into the digital presentation of the particular film. The clips from The Wizard of Oz seemed good, showing gorgeous colors and a healthy-looking grain.

In the end, though, since the film is a compilation of other films, it's ridiculous to get into the nitty-gritty of it all. That said, the overall presentation looks perfectly fine.

Audio 8/10

The film comes with a DTS-HD MA 5.1 surround soundtrack. Though an ethereal score is laced over as various filmmakers and scholars narrate their respective sections (including Karyn Kusama and John Waters), the film's soundtrack features audio from their respective movies. It's all mixed well and sounds sharp and clear. The narration all sounds good. The film score is mixed to the back speakers where appropriate. Again, like the video presentation, it's perfectly fine.

Extras 3/10

As a Janus Contemporaries release, it goes light on the features, including the film's trailer alongside an interview with director Alexandre O. Philippe, recorded originally for The Criterion Channel. For 18 minutes the director talks about his background before explaining what he wished to accomplish with the film's exploration of influence, whether it be obvious and direct (like how Wild at Heart features direct references to The Wizard of Oz) or maybe less obvious, pointing out some insights made by the film's participants that would have never occurred to him.

A short essay by Michael Joshua Rowin can also be found in the release's insert.


For what the film is, the release is perfectly fine.


Year: 2022
Time: 109 min.
Series: Janus Contemporaries
Release Date: March 19 2024
MSRP: $29.95
1 Disc | BD-50
1.77:1 ratio
English 5.1 DTS-HD MA Surround
Region A
 Meet the Filmmakers, a new interview with director Alexandre O. Philippe   Trailer