Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory

Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory ★★★★

"Come with me, and you'll be, in a world of pure imagination."

This musical adaptation of Roald Dahl's novel Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is easily better than the 2005 version. It's the kind of film that appeals across different age groups due to its fine balance of a childlike sense of wonder and a few moments of darker humour.

It's not the best Dahl adaptation overall (that would be Wes Anderson's more recent Fantastic Mr. Fox) and some of the songs (written by Leslie Bricusse and Anthony Newley) are overly twee. Nonetheless, Arthur Ibbetson's retina-searing Technicolor cinematography, Harper Goff's garishly imaginative sets and, above all, Gene Wilder's wry performance as Wonka himself help to make it a timelessly charming watch.

Bonus points for Julie Dawn Cole as the hilariously snotty Veruca Salt.

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