Film the Wizard of Oz and Its Characters

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The Wizard of Oz is a very well known film from 1939 and can be analyzed in great depth. Dorothy, being the main character in the film, is the hero. She is the hero because along her journey she befriends many weird characters like the scarecrow, the tinman and the cowardly lion. However, she does ignore them or throw them to the side like they are nobodies, but she allows them to come on her journey to get back to Kansas. She follows the yellow brick road in order to get to the Wizard of Oz who will “get her back to Kansas.” When Dorothy finds him she realizes that Oz is not this great and powerful magician. Instead she is given these silver shoes to make a wish from and she wishes to go home. Dorothy also helps defeat the bad witch and when she leaves The Land of Oz it is a better place because of her.

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Glinda the good witch is the mentor in the Wizard of Oz. She is knowledgeable and she helps Dorothy when she first comes to The Land of Oz. Glinda doesn’t help Dorothy a lot, but she always knew where Dorothy was and what she was doing. She would follow her and aid her when she deemed it appropriate.

The villain in the film is the Wicked Witch of the West. “Just try and stay out of my way. Just try! I'll get you, my pretty, and your little dog, too!” (The Wizard of Oz). As you can see she does not care about anyone else but herself and she wants Dorothy to be taken down and to never be able to return to Kansas.

The Trickster in the film is Professor Marvel (the wizard of Oz). He is the trickster because he tricks Dorothy into making her believe that he is this great wizard when in fact he is nothing of the sort. “Better get under cover, Sylvester. There's a storm blowin' up - a whopper, to speak in the vernacular of the peasantry. Poor little kid, I hope she gets home alright” (Professor Marvel imdb). Oz also tricks Dorothy in going back to the farm.

The threshold archetype is the yellow brick road because this is what leads Dorothy on her journey. The yellow brick road leads Dorothy into a new world and it changes her and helps her grow. The magic weapon that was used to help complete her journey was the silver slippers. They gave her one wish and Dorothy wished to go back to Kansas.

Glinda the good witch is the anima in The Wizard of Oz. She is the anima because she is spontaneous, intuitive and very feminine. There is no true male animus in the film.

“The persona is a complicated system of relations between individual consciousness and society, fittingly enough a kind of mask, designed on the one hand to make a definite impression upon others, and, on the other, to conceal the true nature of the individual” (Ego and Unconscious). The persona of Professor Marvel is that he is a magician and that he has magic powers. However, the real individual underneath is just a regular human being who has no powers or magic to help anyone. The Cowardly Lion has the persona of a coward and he acts very weak. However, underneath is a brave lion who is trying to come out along the journey with Dorothy.

Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung both had different ideas and thoughts on analysis. When it comes to the causes of behavior, Freud believed that it is influenced from past experiences that ultimately affect your future desires. Jung believed that behavior is influenced by past experiences that occurred in childhood. Freud believed that all humans were essentially powered from the libido, which is undifferentiated energy. You were either erotic (driven by sex) or thanatic (driven by aggression, destructive energy). Freud also had a conception about the human psyche where there is a conscious, preconscious (superego), ego, and unconscious (Id). He describes the Id as our instincts, impulses and repressed material. The ego is where we have conscious awareness and defensive, perceptual and intellectual aspects that are addressed. Lastly the superego is the morals that we follow such as good behavior and what we know of as good or bad. Freud also put together seven pyschosexual stages of the human and how they grow up. His most famous known stage is the Oedipus complex where the child has a hatred and death wish for its same sexed parent and love and attachment for the opposite sexed parent.

Carl Jung had a theory about many different archetypes and how they all played a role in film, stories and myths. Some examples of archetypes are “The Trickster” who causes problems in the story but also does good and “The Hero” who does a courageous act and helps everyone in the end. He also uses analysis from the anima and animus. The anima is the inner feminine aspect of the male mind. The animus is the inner male of the female mind. Both the anima and animus have four stages in which they go through. Jung believed that the Oedipus complex only referred to the male children and the Electra complex was specifically for the female children who competed with their mothers for the love of their father. Jungians method of the unconscious was based on two things, the collective unconscious and the personal unconscious. The collective unconscious was the experiences the individuals underwent and the personal unconscious is our inherited makeup.

Carl Jung and Freud have similar ideas but those ideas of each aspect of analysis are different. They both believe there is a conscious and unconscious, but they believe in different meanings of the words. Personally, I prefer Jung’s method of analysis because it seems much more realistic. The archetypes all have meaning in real life and for every individual in a film or story. Also, the psychosexual stages occur in real life and seem to be pretty accurate unlike Freud’s methods of analysis.

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