Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971)

by missizziemcguinness


‘Come with me, and you’ll see, a world of pure imagination’ 

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is a musical film about a boy called Charlie Bucket (Peter Ostrum) whos family has no money but wins the opportunity of a lifetime when he wins a golden ticket to Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder)’s chocolate factory (guarded by oompa loompas) along with four other children.

I have seen both this version and the 2005 Tim Burton adaptation,and I also read Roald Dahl’s original book when I was younger. I personally prefer this version, because it isn’t fake and they don’t tend to try too hard to make it all bright and happy when there is that underlying dark tone. Without trying to look too deeply into it, but as I have watched it recently, why would you have a factory where nobody goes in or comes out?

As far as I know, most of the actors are either dead or no longer acting but I suppose that this would be a good film to have been known for. It’s slightly creepy but seems to take you up paths that the 2005 adaptation can never compete with. All the child actors (mostly Peter Ostrum) seem to be adorable and angelic and it really feels as if you are being taken into a creepy but exciting chocolate wonderland.  Of course, it has been redone, parodied, made into internet memes using several stills and some of the songs are popular in our culture (the paradise song is often used in adverts) as well as the golden ticket being referenced nearly all the time in various competitions, so much so that it has crept into our language and has become a normal term.

Of course, a story like this can never happen in the modern day, however it is not real so it does not matter very much, and as it was done while Roald Dahl was still alive, it brings out that old fashioned touch that it needs, not the Johnny Depp Show in the recent one. I have probably spent the whole article comparing the two but it is a good movie with the ability to make you hungry for chocolate.

Classic children’s movie with a good cast, musical numbers (personal favourite is either The Candy Man or Pure Imagination) and fairly advanced special effects for its day.

‘If you want to view paradise, simply look around and view it’