Charlie and the Chocolate Factory*

I just got back from an 12:45am showing of this flick and I'm a little tired so if my grammar is worse than usual it's only because I'm typing this at 3AM (but that's really just an excuse. My grammar is always usually bad but now I have an excuse to be a little more lazy about it.) In terms of snacks, I bought a pack of red vines (fake twizz) and they're as bad as I remember. I'm officially done with friggin red friggin vines. They taste like chemicals. The bad kind.

So yeah. Charlie. I was surprisingly unexcited to see this movie going in. The original is one of my favorite movies so it's weird that the combo of Burton and Charlie didn't get me all tingly inside. But right from the trailer get-go something seemed off about this movie. Maybe Depp bonking his head on the camera or whatever struck me as just weirdly hack for such a big imagination type movie. But I was willing to give it the benefit of the doubt. And I did try with this movie. I really did. I tried every angle. Watching it as a remake. Watching it as an original. Imagining the original didn't exist. Struggling to tune in to the 'new' vibe. Clawing my way in to some semblance of charm. But it got me nowhere. It finally cornered me into only appreciating how nice and expensive and fancypants it all looked.

Only in the first 15 minutes did I feel there was hope that this will be something to see. The opening credits rocked. Charlie's family was interesting and funny. His town had a Burtony thing going on that was nice. The colors were brightly dingy. The poverty was well played. Then it started going off. The first thing I noticed was how the Charlie's finding the Golden Ticket played so flat. And as soon as the group of them headed into the Wonka factory doors I knew my enjoyment ship was sinking. My excitement level was too low. Depp as Wonka was just good but I couldn't help drawing comparisons. Wilder was brilliant and otherworldy. Depp had a weird slanted affect but he looked slightly nauseous throughout. Wilder gave off a vibe that he was happily tripping real hard on his own brainial juices. Depp was simply powered twistedly by traditional demons. Wilder's confidence hummed out of his eyes. Depp wore dopey sunglasses..

But the problem with this movie really wasn't Depp. It was Burton. He needs to not make any more remakes. They're lazy and pointless... especially the way he makes them. I hope that he will no longer be bothered to dig in on what's already been so dugged. His blatant 'Look at all these improvements!' translated into hunger pains for the orignal scene.  This flick was crushed by my comparison to the great flow of the original movie. This latest pillage just gurgled like Hollywood muck pumping out of some misleadingly colorful factory... polluting one of my childhood meadows.

Three Good Things About this Movie

- The girl who played Veruca Salt nailed it.
- Depp is always fun to look at and watch even when he's not particularly fun to look at and watch.
- It had some brief moments of actual dementia which I spooned up.

Three Bad Things About this Movie

- The ending gave me that feeling like when you throw up a little in your mouth. Gag.
- I couldn't audibly understand the lyrics to the oompa loompa songs. (Plus they felt more like slaves than partners).
- Charlie and Granpa were shoved into the scenery.

All in all it's usually hard for me to be this hard on a movie. Especially grrrrring at Burton this way. But I just don't understand why he'd want to make this. I picture him most happy in a room that's dark and creaky. But lately he keeps opening the shades and insisting on letting the sun in. I wish he'd close the shades tight and stitch them closed all crooked with giant black thread-- then take a deep breath, inhale the musty stale air, and pass the time using a dead leaf to gently strum at the spiderweb in the corner- playing it like a harp... until the fangy spider comes back.