Charlie and the Chocolate Factory movie

Friday 23 May 2003

Apparently, in the works is another movie version of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, the classic by Roald Dahl, perhaps directed by Tim Burton.

Feelings about the 1971 movie version are mixed. I liked it enough, but had read the book first, and I’m always surprised to learn when a contemporary of mine has seen the movie and not read the book. I actually thought the major plot change in the movie was a good one (in the book, Wonka’s competitors do not try to lure Charlie into stealing a confection for industrial espionage), but there was something a little too bright and happy about the movie. Also, I found it troubling that the Quaker Oats company was one of the producers (IMDB doesn’t list them as such, but they are named in the credits for the movie), as if it were really just an ad for the just-launched Wonka candy brand.

On the other hand, Tim Burton’s movies are usually aggressively dark, which I think also won’t be right for the film. Let’s hope the film-makers find the right balance. I think the book worked so well because it deftly combines the bleakness of the poor Buckets with the exuberance of Wonka’s factory.

Speaking of the book, Dahl wrote a sequel, called Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator, which is very different from the first. It’s more of a silly space adventure, but is enjoyable in its own right. I remember as a kid being excited when it was coming out, and reading excerpts of it that were published in Life magazine. I’d like to see what the vermicious knids would look like on the big screen!

Comments

[gravatar]
Ben Poole 5:44 AM on 28 May 2003

Interesting; thanks for the link! I too read the book before seeing the 1971 film, but I do really like the film. Gene Wilder is a splendid Willy Wonka IMHO.

Anyway, it was great to see the movie again when I got it on DVD (I bought it for my sons. No really, I did ;-)

[gravatar]
Roxanne 10:18 PM on 11 Oct 2003

I don't know. Personally, I think that Tim Burton might actually make this a great film. He did wonders for Sleepy Hollow, and made us look at it from a completely different perspective. Instead of the horseman merely desiring a replacement head, it turned out that someone had infact stolen his head and held total control of the horseman's skull because of that person's greed for the family inheritance. It was really deep, but it didn't seems too dark or gruesome to me. And Nightmare Before Christmas. It was pretty dark, don't get me wrong, but we all have to agree that for a child's film, the story was pretty excellant. Just like in James and the Giant Peach, there were no real noticable plot holes that stood out in my mind, in fact, it seemed quite flawless to me. As for Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka, I think that's an excellant idea. I wouldn't have gone with it before I saw Pirates of the Caribbean, but Johnny Depp was absolutely hilarious and he really transformed into Jack Sparrow. It was unbelievable! Others don't believe he'll make a good Willy Wonka, but I disagree. I think if he gets the part, he's going to surprise a lot of doubtful people.

Add a comment:

Ignore this:
Leave this empty:
Name is required. Either email or web are required. Email won't be displayed and I won't spam you. Your web site won't be indexed by search engines.
Don't put anything here:
Leave this empty:
URLs auto-link and some tags are allowed: <a><b><i><p><br><pre>.