Willy Wonka

I was really worried about seeing Tim Burton'sCharlie and the Chocolate Factory - what if I hated it? Could I ever forgive Burton and Johnny Depp for mucking up one of my most beloved childhood memories? But I needn't have worried. Burton's version of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a sublime sugarplum of a remake, and I enjoyed it from beginning to end.

Depp (and let me just disclose upfront that he is one of my very favorite actors, and I've liked him in almost every film he's ever done) is the only current actor I could envision taking on the role made famous by Gene Wilder, and he does so with verity. I've heard people say they think Burton's version is less dark than the original; I don't see that, myself. While this film is not, perhaps, as shadowy as one might hope and expect from a Burton film, it's certainly not all sunshine and sugar-coated light. Depp plays Wonka with a slighty psychotic and off-kilter edge, heavily evoking Edward Scissorhands and Ed Wood, but tempered by a child-like innocence. Kinda like Michael Jackson, but without the creepiness.