Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971) - Rotten Tomatoes

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory1971

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971)

TOMATOMETER

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AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is strange yet comforting, full of narrative detours that don't always work but express the film's uniqueness.

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Movie Info

Promoted as a family musical by Paramount Pictures, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is more of a black comedy, perversely faithful to the spirit of Roald Dahl's original book Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Enigmatic candy manufacturer Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder) stages a contest by hiding five golden tickets in five of his scrumptious candy bars. Whoever comes up with these tickets will win a free tour of the Wonka factory, as well as a lifetime supply of candy. Four of the five winning children are insufferable brats: the fifth is a likeable young lad named Charlie Bucket (Peter Ostrum), who takes the tour in the company of his equally amiable grandfather (Jack Albertson). In the course of the tour, Willy Wonka punishes the four nastier children in various diabolical methods -- one kid is inflated and covered with blueberry dye, another ends up as a principal ingredient of the chocolate, and so on -- because these kids have violated the ethics of Wonka's factory. In the end, only Charlie and his grandfather are left. Ostensibly set in England, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory was lensed in Germany (as revealed by the film's final overhead shot). ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

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Cast

Gene Wilder
as Willy Wonka
Jack Albertson
as Grandpa Joe
Peter Ostrum
as Charlie Bucket
Michael Bollner
as Augustus Gloop
Denise Nickerson
as Violet Beauregarde
Ursula Reit
as Mrs. Gloop
Leonard Stone
as Mr. Beauregarde
Julie Dawn Cole
as Veruca Salt
Roy Kinnear
as Mr. Salt
Paris Themmen
as Mike Teevee
Nora Denney
as Mrs. Teevee
Diana Sowle
as Mrs. Bucket
David Battley
as Mr. Turkentine
Gunter Meissner
as Mr. Slugworth
Ernest Ziegler
as Grandpa George
Dora Altmann
as Grandma Georgina
Franziska Liebing
as Grandma Josephine
Günter Meisner
as Mr. Slugworth
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Critic Reviews for Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory

All Critics (44) | Top Critics (3)

Probably the best film of its sort since The Wizard of Oz. It is everything that family movies usually claim to be, but aren't: Delightful, funny, scary, exciting, and, most of all, a genuine work of imagination.

July 9, 2018 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

An okay family musical fantasy.

August 14, 2008 | Full Review…

Great fun, with Wilder for once giving an impeccably controlled performance as the factory's bizarre owner.

January 26, 2006 | Full Review…
Top Critic

It is a rare breed: an imaginative live-action kid's film that engages and delights adults.

February 3, 2018 | Full Review…

Creates a marvelous world as close to heaven as any kid can imagine and never talks down to its young audience.

August 8, 2017 | Rating: 2.5/5 | Full Review…

The movie continues to remain timeless in spite of itself.

August 8, 2017 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory

this is truly one of the most magical and wonderful films ever made. It has everything that makes a children classic such as wizard of oz. Gene Wilder was a perfect choice for Willy not like Johnny Depp in The Tim Burton remake. I love how the moral of the story is don't be greedy but it doesn't come out and preach it your to busy having a good time looking at everything and being entertained by everything.

Michael Edwards
Michael Edwards

Super Reviewer

½

Gene Wilder is a genius, and he makes us love this magical film that may not be as well polished as it could have been but has a lovely charm of its own and has become a cult childhood favorite for so many people - like a younger sibling of The Wizard of Oz and Mary Poppins.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

½

Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory is based on the book Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl. As is the case with the author's children's books, there is a sinister element that is most subversive. It is a recurring theme in his works and this adaptation is no different. The movie was filmed in Munich and this gives the town a puzzling hard-to-place feel before anyone even sets foot in the factory. Five lucky kids get the opportunity to tour Will Wonka's wondrous plant but the experience isn't quite what they were anticipating. The bright colorful production design stirs the imagination with possibilities. There's a chocolate river, giant edible mushrooms, lickable wallpaper, a Wonkamobile that shoots soap. It's all rather enchanting. Only the Fizzy Lifting Drinks sequence is snooze. When the picture was released in 1971 it was a box office disappointment. Despite garnering positive reviews it only earned a mere $4 million in 1971. Over the years, however, the film achieved the status as a cult film and is now widely accepted as an outright classic. It's easy to see why. I love this film. fastfilmreviews.com

Mark Hobin
Mark Hobin

Super Reviewer

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