Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971)

wonka memeApparently the guy in all those condescending internet memes is also in a movie.


Let’s not kid ourselves: Willy Wonka is a lunatic.

If this man wasn’t locking himself in a warehouse to manufacture candy, he would be raising an army of little people to overthrow the tri-state area. That’s just a fact.

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is an adaptation of Roald Dahl’s 1964 book, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. The title was switched with Wonka up front because the film was being financed by a candy company who wanted to tie in the marketing for its new “Wonka” chocolate bars. That candy bar ended up tanking, but long story short, there’s a brand that still makes “Wonka” candy today. Whether that candy will in fact cause you to turn violet (,Violet) has yet to be determined.

This movie was directed by Mel Stuart and stars Gene Wilder as Wonka and Jack Albertson as Grandpa Joe. (You might know Gene, but Jack was the voice of Amos in The Fox and the Hound in case you care.) And even though this musical (I don’t always think of this as a musical but it definitely is) didn’t do so hot at the box office it rose in popularity the following decade when it was released on something called a “VHS.”

Gene Wilder WonkaAlso, I mentioned this in last week’s Prince Caspian post, but that boat scene where they ride through the tunnel with flashes of beheaded birds on the wall will most certainly scar your children for life, so don’t say I didn’t warn you.

OH, SOMETHING YOU SHOULD KNOW: You know your child is emotionally unbalanced like Veruca when they go from demanding candy to thirsting for world domination in one song.

BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE! Six months-ish ago, I wrote a post on Meet the Robinsons and I left an “I.O.U.” for my “oh, something you should know.” I am ready to pay that debt with an extra “oh, something you should know” about Willy Wonka. So without further adieu…

OH, SOMETHING YOU SHOULD KNOW: Four old people in the same bed without pants on—what could possibly go wrong? (Yeah, I know…wasn’t worth the wait.)

willy wonka movieI like at the ending of this film when Charlie returns the everlasting gobstopper to Mr. Wonka, who responds with a line from Shakespeare: “So shines a good deed in a weary world.”

In a world where so many think only of themselves, and so few care about the consequences of their decisions on others, we need more Charlie’s.

We need more children and adults who exemplify integrity. We need more strangers who stop to help a young mother struggling to carry both children and groceries. We need more fathers who turn off the TV and play with their children (whether it’s a “Sunday movie” or not).

In short, we need more people who are willing to make the more selfless but less convenient choices. As Anne C. Pingree once said, “We can alter the face of the earth one family and one home at a time through charity, our small and simple acts of pure love.”

There you have it. Charity is the golden ticket we need to carry if we want to gain entrance to a place much better than a chocolate factory, so let’s get going, folks. There is so much time and so little to do. (Wait, strike that—reverse.)

“Charity is the pure love of Christ, and it endureth forever; and whoso is found possessed of it at the last day, it shall be well with him.” — Moroni 7:47

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2 Responses to Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971)

  1. John Rainier says:

    I have managed to avoid this movie so far , I believe I will continue to do so . Also , Jack Anderson was “The Man ” on “Chico and The Man”.

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