The classic 1971 Children’s adventure film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory may be a fairly broken adaptation of the Roald Dahl book, but it is still a great film, highly enjoyable, and has been a staple of every home video collection for decades. I still watch and enjoy it as an adult. However, there are some really odd parts to it that I simply don’t know how the filmmakers overlooked during production.
Are these slightly off-kilter observations dealbreakers? No, of course not. Is this list meant to be taken seriously? Also, no, of course not. But do laugh along with some of these strange events in the movie.
So again, before I get into this list, I want to reassure all of you that yes, this is a movie, and a GREAT one at that. Just, you know, things…
1. Kids in a Candy Store
Does anyone else find it odd that the kids can just run over to the local candy store after school, have absolute free reign of the joint and not have to pay anything? I can even overlook the fact that the shopkeeper actually touches the kids, picks the kids up, and lets them behind the counter to ride on his ladder, because song and dance number. But for this shopkeeper to simply give away all that candy for free just because the kids are, well, kids? No way.
I keep telling myself that their parents buy them a monthly subscription, sort of like an all-you-can-eat plan to keep them happy after school. The parents write the candy shop a check every month, and the kids just go to town. Yeah, an unlimited candy contract seems unlikely, but how else do you explain the situation?
2. Daughter Encourages Dad to Smoke
Grandpa Joe gives up tobacco because the six members of the Bucket family can’t afford a single loaf of bread, yet, his daughter is encouraging him to smoke his pipe. “Come on, Dad, it’s only one pipe a day,” she desperately begs of him.
How odd is it that a beloved offspring would encourage their bed-ridden elderly father in relatively poor health to continue puffing on the old pipe. The only logic I can come up with is that Grandpa Joe must get really, really irritable when he doesn’t get his smoke break in. Like, dude, you need a Snickers kind of irritable.
Also, he hasn’t left his bed in 20 years. Wouldn’t smoking any kind of lit tobacco product in bed be a massive fire hazard? Just a thought.
3. Bathroom Breaks?
All four of the grandparents have been in bed for 20 years, and they haven’t needed to use a bathroom? Movie magic. At least, I’m hoping the answer is movie magic. Otherwise, ewwwwww…
4. The Five Continents
This movie was released in 1971. By this point, the earth was classified into seven continents. So, when the reporter claims that there are only five, which ones are he leaving out?
I guess if the world were to be reclassified into five continents, the sensible choices would be to combine Europe and Asia into Eurasia, and also to eliminate Antarctica as a continent.
5. The Awful Math and Science Teacher
If ratemyteachers.com was a thing in 1971, Mr. Turkentine would get a one star. He’s such a sarcastic little twat, and yet seems to know absolutely nothing.
How on earth can a teacher, who is supposedly knowledgeable on basic math, not be able to figure out that 2 out of 1000 is .2%? Then again, he was completely unable to prove that his “miraculous” wart remover could actually remove warts, so maybe he’s just a big ol’ quack.
6. Wonka Fakes a Disability
With the world wide phenomenon that is the contest over, and the five lucky recipients ready to enter the factory for their big tour, Willy Wonka introduced himself to the world by faking being disabled.
This should be a harbinger of the hell that is to come for all the people getting ready to enter. What kind of a human being fakes a disability for the sake of getting a pop from your fans? Faking a disability is literally one of the least-funniest things you can do, yet, the crowd goes absolutely crazy for him when it turns out he’s just fine!!
It’s not like he’s going to make the kids sign a contract they visibly can’t read or anything.
7. Wonka is a Sociopath
Let’s examine the fate of the kids one by one…
- Augustus nearly drowns in chocolate and is then almost melted in the boiler, and this is the best case scenario of the four kids.
- Violet has to get squeezed, likely with massive organ damage.
- Veruca is probably cremated with her father.
- Mike is stretched back to normal size, likely with massive organ damage.
At no point does Wonka feel any remorse that he has possibly murdered four strange kids for doing nothing more than simply being slightly-imperfect and perfectly flawed humans.
Willy Wonka really is one of the planet’s darkest supervillians!
8. The Oompa Loompas
Anyone else bothered by the fact that the Oompa Loompas are literally slaves to Willy Wonka?
Let’s examine the backstory. Wonka goes to Loompaland looking for new flavors for his candies, when he happens upon an entire race of being that seemed to be getting eaten up. Without much choice, Wonka ships the entirety of the population of Oompa Loompa’s to his factory, and forces them into heavy labor without any compensation other than the knowledge that they won’t be eaten.
The Oompa Loompas do their master’s bidding for no wages, while the good hard-working humans he once employed are now fending for themselves living on cabbage water and the occasional bread.
Again, Wonka is a sociopath, a supervillian, and a slave master. Not to mention, he has a bad temper, but more on that later…
9. The Ceiling Fan of Doom
Wonka placed his fizzy-lifting drinks machine in what was clearly a former smokestack.
I get that for a product like that, you’d need high ceilings in order to test the effectiveness of a product that’s designed to lift you off the ground. But why would you put a killer fan at the top that could very well chop up all of your test subjects? There is a dark theory, but it makes sense…
The giant fan at the top of the smokestack was not there to blow around bubbles. Why are there bubbles? What do any of these bubbles have to do with a drink that defies gravity? No, that fan was for all intents and purposes, a cyanide capsule, there to kill whoever was destined to float away forever as a means to a quick end.
Think about it, if you are floating away, and burping hadn’t yet been a tested way to break the effects of the drink, then theoretically you could just float right up into the atmosphere and either burn up, or end up causing major issues for airplanes.
The fan just simply ends it quickly, and no one else gets harmed.
10. Charlie Actually Trusts Willy Wonka in the End
I’m sorry, I don’t care if he’s the world’s greatest candy-maker or not, if anyone screamed at my beloved grandpa the way Willy Wonka screamed at Grandpa Joe, he would not live to see another day.
What an unbelievably bizarre temper issue this man has, even if it was just a test. Which, you know what? That might make it even worse! Then he puts them in an elevator that can’t promise their safety? Nuts to that! I’d cut my losses and run!
Wonka’s factory? One star. Do not recommend. I’ll have a Slugworth’s Sizzler, thank you.