Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Before I begin, let me say that I thought the original
Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory with Gene Wilder was a funny
classic that will never be replaced in our hearts. On this note, I guess
it is safe to say that the remake of Charlie
and the Chocolate Factory from the workshop of Tim Burton
and Johnny Depp is great also, but in a very different way.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory- Synopsis
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is based
on Roald Dahl's classic book about a boy who wins a visit to a sweets factory,
run by the quirky Willy Wonka [played by Depp]. The boy encounters many
amazing scenes and adventures while touring the enchanted factory.
Actually, most of us adults already know pretty much the entire story behind
this tale thanks to the original Gene Wilder version of Wonka. The fact
that Tim Burton's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a re-telling
of this same story is really the only weakness this film has. The Tim Burton
version of Charlie takes us through the exact same steps, or should
I say rooms, where we encounter each child falling to their demise. In the
end, we know who will win the prize and how things work out; well sort of.
This new re-telling of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory does do
a few things different that the original. First, we take a much deeper look
at Wonka, played by Johnny Depp, and the events that made the character
become the most eccentric chocolate factory owner on the planet. Second,
the ending is much different than the Wilder version, but I would have to
give away some spoilers to be able to discuss it. Third, there are tons
of small differences between the two films that will require you to pay
attention to details to notice. One such major difference is the use of
squirrels cracking nuts instead of giant geese dropping golden eggs [squirrels
were the original idea laid down by Dahl].
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory- Review
The number one question about Charlie and the
Chocolate Factory is if it is better than the original Gene Wilder
Wonka film. Well, I am going to repeat what Johnny Depp and Tim Burton have
stated repeatedly-- the two films are different. Each film has its perks,
but Charlie and the Chocolate Factory definitely has the edge when
it comes to better cinematography and updated special effects. I especially
liked the idea of all the Oompa-Loompas all looking the same [but all with
different voices]. However, I found the Oompa-Loompa music from the original
film to be much more entertaining.
Depp's Wonka is creepy and lovable
Who is the better of the two Wonkas, Johnny Depp
or Gene Wilder? Again, both actors portray their characters differently.
Wilder's Wonka was humorous due to his eccentric character and witty one-liners.
Johnny Depp's character was humorous due to his sadistic one-liners and
his germ-freak personality. One nice addition to Depp's Wonka is his ability
to have flashbacks, adding a little more depth and understanding to the
Mike hates chocolate, but figured a way to win by buying only one bar.
During the first twenty minutes of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
I sat back and thought 'wow', this is definitely going to be better than
the original Wilder version. The cinematography was excellent, the intro
was astounding, and the introductions to the children were classic. But
as we entered the amazing chocolate factory the film quickly found its groove
and ran the film with a story that everybody already knew. Is this a bad
thing? Not necessarily. But a remake that follows an acknowledged tale can
definitely turn a 'great film' into a 'very good film'.
If you were planning on seeing a wonderful family film this summer, Charlie
and the Chocolate Factory is easily your number one choice.