“Mmmm … snozzberries!” The great Gene Wilder stars as the weird and wonderful candy man Willy Wonka in this scrumdiddlyumptious movie musical based on Roald Dahl’s classic children’s novel.
“The best film of its sort since The Wizard of Oz. It is everything that family movies usually claim to be, but aren’t: Delightful, funny, scary, exciting, and, most of all, a genuine work of imagination.” – Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
Reclusive confectioner Willy Wonka starts a world-wide frenzy with the announcement that five golden tickets stashed away inside the wrappers of his candy bars will allow the winners to peek inside his top-secret Wonka Chocolate Factory. Once inside, five lucky kids and their guardians, including meek little Charlie Bucket and his grandpa (Jack Albertson) discover a world stranger and more fabulous than they could have imagined: rivers of chocolate, lickable wallpaper and, of course, the loveable (and strangely unsettling) Oompa Loompas, Wonka’s singing, dancing and somewhat sadistic orange-faced factory workers. It’s all fun, games, sweets and songs until some of the nastier children (including greedy Augustus Gloop and spoiled Veruca Salt) discover that there are consequences for bad behavior, while poor Charlie may have won the grandest prize of them all! Fueled by Wilder’s wonderfully eccentric performance, utterly sing-able songs and a psychedelic vibe that is, to quote future-blueberry Violet Beauregarde, “a total freak-out!,” Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is a timeless work of Pure Imagination. (Dir. by Mel Stuart, 1971, USA, 110 mins., Rated G)