Saturday, May 12, 2012

Willy Wonka

Okay, I'll admit, writing about Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (or is it Charlie and the Chocolate Factory?) is a bit odd on a romance loop.

However, since the two films were based on a children's book, it's still writing, correct?

The other day I was bored out of my mind and couldn't leave because I had to work (I work from home for my EDJ), so I turned on the tube. Six billion channels and there wasn't a thing to watch. I finally came across channel 280 and what do you know, the first version of Willy Wonka with Gene Wilder was on.

Gene Wilder (picture source: unrealitymag.com)

Johnny Depp (picture source: takingtheyoke.blogspot.com)

I hesitated. I'd seen the version with Johnny Depp and was totally creeped out by it. Johnny, who I love, reminded me of a pedophile.  I considered that it was the remake's fault - the original had to be better. After all, it was mentioned on The Gilmore Girls which I truly loved. WW was one of Rorie's favs. At fifteen, she watched it with her first boyfriend, Dean, and her mom Lorelei.

How bad could it be?

OMG. The first version with Gene Wilder was as creepy. Is the book also that weird? Somehow I'd missed it as a kid. I kept watching Gene watch the little ones as they frolicked around his chocolate factory and sat with him on the boat/train/car/whatever. He has the oddest look on his face, like he was in love or something. Eeewww. And what he did to those poor kids. Yeah, they were irritating, but you don't hurt kids. Come on. I know, I know, the story was trying to teach a lesson. That only Charlie had any honor and class.

Sure. He lives in a one room house with his mother and grandparents and the grandparents (four of them) all share one bed. Double eeewwww.

And what about that song about the candyman. Again, it creeped me out.

Maybe it's because I've read so much in the news about adults luring kids in and then abusing them that I found both movies so awful. I don't have kids myself, but if I did, I wouldn't let them watch this stuff.

The absolute worst for me was at the end of the movie (spoiler alert) when Gene Wilder told Charlie that he's giving the chocolate factory to him, a child, not an adult. When Charlie asks why, Gene says (paraphrasing here), "An adult would want to do things their way, not my way. But a child, oh a child will do whatever I want."

Eeeeeee. Just too freaking creepy for me.


Marie Rose Dufour said...

The Johnny Depp version is super creepy. The Gene Wilder version doesn't bother me as much maybe because I grew up with that one. The books are very creepy when you read them as adults. Roald Dahl's writing has a twisted layer that children totally miss.

Tina Donahue said...

That's what I thought, Marie. I'm no prude when it comes to adult stuff. Stories for children are another matter entirely. And I'm not always looking for conspiracies in everything I see - you know, if I play the record backwards, the devil's talking. But I found both versions deeply weird with tones of pedophilia. Yuck.

jean hart stewart said...

Knew I didn't want to see Johnny Depp in such a role. Oh, ugh.

Stormie Kent said...

Um, I didn't see that at all. I just thought each version was about two creepy/crazy fictional characters that never grew up and were neurotic. I admit the Johnny Depp character was weirder and Gene Wilder was mean. As a kid who suffered abuse I usually am sensitive to that. I will look at it again but, I don't know ...

Tina Donahue said...

You didn't miss anything, Jean. The movie and his performance were really weird.

Tina Donahue said...

I was a victim of abuse too, Stormie, and both movies creeped me out. There didn't seem to be an appropriate line between the adults and the children. If I had kids, I wouldn't let them see either movie and I'd warn them against adult men who wanted to give them candy.