What I love most about stories written for children is that they’re constructed in such a way for them to extract little pieces of moral advice. And the thing about Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005) is that the movie itself is a big life lesson. Burton turned Dahl’s book into an impressive visual universe, fascinating for kids and adults both.
We already know what a great team Johnny Depp and Tim Burton make, so I’m not gonna rant about that. Instead, I’m gonna go straight to telling you why I love this movie as much as I do, accent put on how beautifully each charater was created, to express different types of human flaws.
Long story short, Willy Wonka, an amazing chocolatier, hides five Golden Tickets for five lucky kids to find. These tickets guarantee a free visit to the famous Chocolate Factory, guided by Wonka himself. And the winners are:
He was the first kid to find a Golden Ticket. He is the embodiment of human greediness, of people that can never get enough. Well, he did got what he deserved, so there’s that.
She is that kid that is just obssesed with winning. A thing passed on from her mother, apparently. Because her only purpose is winning, she doesn’t actually care what she wins at. So she participates in stupid competitions such as who can chew a piece of gum for the longest time. She considered finding the Golden Ticket another one of her competitions, and during her visit at the Factory she just kept trying to impress Wonka for no reason.
The rich girl. The rich girl with parents willing to give her the most ridiculous things, just because she wants them to. When she heard about the Golden Tickets and the rarity of them, she knew she had to have one, not because she liked the Wonka chocolate, but for the sole purpose of owning something that others didn’t.
I have to confess, at first I liked this kid. He’s smart and he figured out the algorithm used by Wonka to hide the Tickets by himself. His only obvious problem was that he played extremely violent video games. But then again, what kid doens’t do that at some point? Well, the problem with Mike was that he, like Violet, didn’t want the ticket because he actually wanted to visit the Wonka Factory, but because he wanted to prove himself. He took the chance of a lifetime from another kid, just to prove others how smart he is.
Charlie is basically what a kid should be. Innocent, with no hidden interests, that finds joy in every tiny thing. He is respectful and understanding of his parents who can’t offer him much. He is fascinated by his grandpa’s stories, a former worker in the Chocolate Factory, and he truly wishes to find the Golden Ticket, so that he will meet the legendary Mr. Wonka. While he visits the Factory he’s sincerely amazed by everything he encounters.
The moral of the story is not that you have to be poor to win, but that you have to be humble and sincere and not driven by material purpose, greediness, or an obsession with competition. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is made up of a lot of subtleties and underlying moral issues that can be discussed. Those kids are portaraials of different human personalities and the great thing is that they each get what they deserve.
They all end up as victims of their own flaws. And that’s awesome.
*gif credits: natalihardy, readbooksfuckminds, krorys, movie-addicted