Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory

Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory

1971, G, 98 min. Directed by Mel Stuart. Starring Gene Wilder, Jack Albertson, Peter Ostrum, Roy Kinnear, Aubrey Woods.

REVIEWED By Marjorie Baumgarten, Fri., May 17, 1996

One way to judge the success of James and the Giant Peach might be to note that the re-release of Roald Dahl's other notable novel-cum-movie, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, has been pushed up from mid-summer to mid-May. Though never one of my personal favorites (even though it does feature the cherished word "chocolate" in its title), there appears to be legions of younger fans who disagree. This re-release will provide old and new fans with the opportunity to check out this 1971 fantasy musical. Those unfamiliar with the story should note a couple of facts. One is that Gene Wilder's candy-maker protagonist is much more cynical and sadistic than the usual characters encountered in kids movies. (Dahl, himself, adapted his book for the screen.) The other caution involves notes of a musical kind: This is the movie that spawned the song "Candyman."

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Mel Stuart Films
Documentary of a concert in the summer of 1972, with Albert King, Richard Pryor, and many others.

Marjorie Baumgarten, Aug. 6, 2002

More by Marjorie Baumgarten
The Truth
Binoche and Deneuve clash exquisitely as mère et fille

July 3, 2020

Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and the Band
All the steps before that last waltz

March 6, 2020


Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, Mel Stuart, Gene Wilder, Jack Albertson, Peter Ostrum, Roy Kinnear, Aubrey Woods

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle