Johnny Depp is awesome, that cannot be denied. It’s a FACT. Yet as good as he is, and as much as I love him and Tim Burton for that matter, the best Willy Wonker has to be the original one, played by Gene Wilder, as a lunatic confectioner. Roald Dahl was always my favourite growing up and it was because he understood what children can be like (spiteful, petulant, greedy and nasty, and that’s just the good ones, boom boom) and what motivates them: getting one over authority figures, keeping out of trouble and above all, sweeties!! In this eccentric and downright mental movie, we meet Charlie Bucket, a good but poor kid who wins a trip to the chocolate factory and meets a procession of horrid children: Augustus gloop, violet Beauregard and mike teevee: one and all are amazingly awful little brats!
So, the food. The food. We have gum that tastes like a three-course dinner: with a roast beef main!, a deep and gloopy chocolate river, everlasting gobstoppers, geese that lay golden eggs, lickable wallpaper, Scrumpdiddlyumptious bars. It’s a feast for the ears as well as the belly. I remember wanting to walk through the candy village with edible toadstools more than ANYTHING EVER when I was little and nothing has changed since then. This film puts the joy into food and inventiveness into scoffing. It also teaches you to be a very, very good child and do as you’re told. A valuable lesson for sure.