It's CTC in the Movies! I haven't done a movie in a good long while, and this one is one of my favorites. The first picture is actually from the credits.
When Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory came out in 1971, I was a teenager, still young enough to be enthralled by the idea of an entirely edible room complete with chocolate river, but old enough to feel drawn to the inexplicable sex appeal of Gene Wilder, especially in this role.
Sex appeal? Yep.
I don't think I understood it at the time, but there was - IS - something about his portrayal of Willy Wonka that was very ... sexy. Kooky, yes. Funny, yes. Crazy, no doubt, but also just a little dangerous (watch that cane come whipping down in front of the children!). And definitely sexy.
Gene Wilder has the ability to portray totally hilarious, on-the-edge madness, with big warmth. That's a wonderful thing, and that, to me, is what makes this movie really special.
I'd worn out my videotape of this movie and the soundtrack had started to go all fuzzy, so when it came out on DVD, I snatched it up. The songs are wonderful, the kind of tunes you find yourself singing later, and of course there's the chocolate and the wonder and the magic. Watching the DVD, I felt all the wonder of Charlie finding that golden ticket, all over again. My only regret is I bought the full screen version instead of the wide screen version. I wasn't paying attention. But that's a minor regret.
The DVD has some great added features: a 1971 featurette, a making-of documentary which I thoroughly enjoyed, and optional commentary with the kids. The other stuff is just filler, IMO. The stills gallery is all black and white photos, what's the point of that?
I haven't seen the new version of this movie. As much as I love Johnny Depp, I haven't been able to get around the previews of him with that ridiculous Dutch Boy haircut, and whatever is wrong with his voice??? I guess I also have Gene Wilder forever stuck in my head as Wonka, but ... ok, at some point I'll probably get it and watch it. In the meantime, I highly recommend this older version.
I've posted more Wonka pictures in the Movie Gallery, but before I end here, I just want to include one of my very favorite moments -- Willy Wonka and the edible teacup ... priceless: