This was the first adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and it remains the best, with Gene Wilder especially memorable as Willy Wonka, the eccentric owner of the local chocolate factory.
Following a worldwide competition, young Charlie Bucket (Ostrum) is one of five lucky children in possession of a golden ticket that invites him on a tour of the famous factory with Wonka himself. Taking Grandpa (Albertson) with him, Charlie joins the other (rather obnoxious) children in the adventure of a lifetime, exploring the strange factory and meeting the odd Oompa-Loompas who works there.
A colourful, lively musical with a delicious thread of malice, this features spectacular sets, jokes aplenty and fun performances from the kiddie cast, of whom only one, Julie Dawn Cole (aka Veruca Salt), carried on acting as a grown-up (Peter Ostrum is now a veterinarian in New York State).
Is Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...
Young children may find the Oompa Loompas scary. And Willy Wonka himself for that matter.
The boat ride may scare some viewers as spiders and various other creepy images appear.
The naughty children suffer various fates that may upset young viewers (one is turned into a blueberry, one falls into a chute that leads to a fire) but by the end of the movie it is shown that they are all safe.