Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – by Roald Dahl

20 01 2013

This is the second book I’ve finished this week! Although I guess you can see why…!

charlie and the chocolate factory

Such a classic though, it deserves to be read lots! And as happened when I read James and the Giant Peach last year, I found bits I couldn’t remember in the slightest! There’s a fantastic chapter about square sweets that look round:

[from chapter 23 – Square sweets that look round]
On the table there were rows and rows of small white square-shaped
sweets. The sweets looked very much like square sugar lumps – except that each of them
had a funny little pink face painted on one side. At the end of the table, a number of
Oompa-Loompas were busily painting more faces on more sweets.
‘There you are!’ cried Mr Wonka. ‘Square sweets that look round!’
‘They don’t look round to me,’ said Mike Teavee.
‘They look square,’ said Veruca Salt. ‘They look completely square.’
‘But they are square,’ said Mr Wonka. ‘I never said they weren’t.’
‘You said they were round!’ said Veruca Salt.
‘I never said anything of the sort,’ said Mr Wonka. ‘I said they looked round.’
‘But they don’t look round!’ said Veruca Salt.’ They look square!’
‘They look round,’ insisted Mr Wonka.
‘They most certainly do not look round!’ cried Veruca Salt.
‘Veruca, darling,’ said Mrs Salt, ‘pay no attention to Mr Wonka! He’s lying to you!’
‘My dear old fish,’ said Mr Wonka, ‘go and boil your head!’
‘How dare you speak to me like that!’ shouted Mrs Salt.
‘Oh, do shut up,’ said Mr Wonka. ‘Now watch this!’
He took a key from his pocket, and unlocked the door, and flung it open … and suddenly … at the sound of the door opening, all the rows of little square sweets looked quickly round to see who was coming in. The tiny faces actually turned towards the door and stared at Mr Wonka.
‘There you are!’ he cried triumphantly. ‘They’re looking round! There’s no argument about it! They are square sweets that look round!’

These days it’s hard to read it without picture both of the big films that have been made of it.

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory – 1971

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – 2005

It’s rare for a remake to ever live up to the original, but in this case, in so many ways, the newer film is much closer to the book than the old film. I guess the other film changed it’s title but it’s still the same story. In the newer film, the Oompa Loompas use the ‘correct’ words for their songs (although the classic oopma loompa doopa de doo from the old film will remain a classic!), and Veruca Salt has the same story as in the book, whereas they changed the squirrels for geese in the old film! The old film also had a scene where Charlie and his Grandpa were caught breaking rules, which just isn’t in Charlie’s character, or the book, and a whole plot with Arthur Slugworth trying to get each child to steal a recipe. Not that the newer film was perfect! Willy Wonka seemed high as a kite for half of it, and there was a whole plotline about his relationship with his father who was a dentist, which was totally surreal.

At the end of the day though, they’re both fab films – the old has some beautiful songs in it (other than the oompa loompa songs! (check out pure imagination and the candyman can) And I’d highly recommend watching both of them – and reading the book of course!

But really, one film has a chocolate waterfall and river that look like thin hot chocolate, the other that looks like proper melted chocolate – which would you rather?!

charlie and the chocolate factory-a

charlie and the chocolate factory-b



2 responses

14 01 2014
Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator – by Roald Dahl |

[…] this sequel to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, we go into outer space, we make people younger, we go to the centre of the earth – […]

22 08 2017
A stroll with TT – Sun in Gemini

[…] Ironically, The Albert Tower is also known for another feature. From below, and almost any angle, it appears to be a round tower, not a square one… which did prompt much Roald Dhal-based humour on our part, based on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and the scene about ‘Square towers that look round’. […]

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