Monday, July 18, 2005

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Had the special joy of going to the cinema for the second Sunday in a row, to the same mall where the Parking Structure elevator is still not working, meaning I get to bump the stroller down three flights of stairs again. But back to our movie.
Johnny Depp, once again succeeds in portraying a creep. Imagery and cgi wonders abound. Our hero lives in a completely unique hovel amidst rows and rows of moribund row houses. His other four competitors are so caricatured at the beginning that there is absolutely no suspense as to the outcome, even for someone like me who was completely unfamiliar with the story. Christopher Lee is perfect in his role as Father of the Creep. Oompah-Loompahs bring much-needed levity and music, as do a roomful of squirrels possessing a collective wisdom far beyond that of their owner. The fat kid's face looks like a baby's butt, it's so rotund and translucent, his blue eyes would have made any fuhrer proud. Major props also to the look of absolute focus on the face of Violet's mom. They should have been from Dallas, not Florida.The scene where candy gets teleported by TV, but gets smaller, wasn't too well thought out, either. Everybody knows that the camera adds ten pounds. I guess in the world of fantasy, anything can happen.
Oh, one other thing. I guess, in today's PG, PC world, it's o.k. to use the word "retard" (as uttered by the totally unlikeable video-game playing techno-nerd kid), but not "bastard" (you'll have to watch the movie). They both describe wrinkles in the human condition, shouldn't they get equal weight? After watching videos in the "Back to the Future" series with my kids, recently, this movie was stellar in terms of language, if not in respect for "diversity".More importantly, the kids loved it. It was serendipitous that my son and I had just concluded watching "2001: A Space Odyssey" the day before, it made one of the "in-jokes" pretty funny for him. The air conditioning was working fine, and I almost got a nap in the middle of it. The Squrrels woke me up.