“You despise books; who who’s lives are absorbed in the vanities of ambition, the pursuit of pleasure or indolence; but remember that all the known world, excepting only savage nations, is governed by books.”
Showdown: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory vs Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971) and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005)
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a classic story that is beloved by millions. The story of a poor boy who just happens to find a ticket to a golden opportunity at the last possible second is a theme that resonates with everyone. It is the dream of most children to uncover something magical in their own lives. Since the story was written in 1964, there have been two renditions of this book.
Plot: The plot in this version is quite close to the book. Part of that, I think, is due to author Ronald Dahl actually working on the screenplay for this movie. This version turned the story into a musical, which I usually hate, but I think it turned out well for this particular story.
Pacing: I have to say, the pacing in this version of the movie is slow. I think it takes over half of the movie before they even get to the factory. The total run time of this movie was about 100 minutes, but it actually seemed much longer. Parts of the story do drag.
Feel: This movie is actually one of my favorites of all time. It has a hidden humor that continues to surprise. Gene Wilder makes the perfect Wonka, I think. It’s hard to imagine anyone else playing the part as well as he does. All of the minor details in this version are perfect, from the expressions that people make to the aside comments that are surprising and hilarious. I think this movie captures the feeling of the book perfectly.
Plot: The trouble with this version of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is who was involved in the production of the film. This version is a Tim Burton film, and it shows. His taste seeps into every aspect of the story. In fact, he changes the entire character of Wonka, making him kind of a weak, lonely character. The ending is also entirely different. Rather than telling Charlie that he doesn’t win because of the mistake he made along the tour, he says Charlie is the winner but cannot take his family with him. This Wonka had some sort of crazy dentist father that forbade him from eating candy, which made Wonka want to pursue his dreams all the more. Charlie reunites the two so that the Wonka factory can become a family business.
Pacing: This version did have better pacing. Newer movies usually do. There were fewer songs, but there was still a musical element.
Feel: This version had a dark feel. It felt typically Tim Burton to me. I didn’t like Johnny Depp as Wonka, because he was dark, plus he was lacking whatever quality that made Gene Wilder perfect for the part. Johnny Depp was simply, Johnny Depp. Not Willy Wonka.
I like the story and the 1971 version of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I think children should read the book, but if you’re going to watch a movie version, skip 2005.
Today’s question for FF Friday is a reading nook tour. I pretty much will read anywhere my books go. I really like to read in a warm bath full of bubbles, but I’m certainly not going to show a picture of that. I’ll read in the car, outside on a swing, in comfy chairs, in bed, and in my “office.” You can see my office in the picture. That is where I work all day and spend at least 70 percent of the work day.
The picture above my seat says, “If you are here, you are awesome.” My daughter made the heart picture addition.
The Book Blogger Hop question:
What weekly memes do you follow on a regular basis?
Right now, I do two on Fridays. I do the FF Friday and Book Blogger Hop. I don’t have time for many others throughout the week. I like these two because I can throw them together and meet cool new people. So, that’s fun. A couple of times I have joined The Children’s Bookshelf Meme over at MeMe Tales.
Where do you like to read? Tell me below!
And if you want to follow me, I’m hosting a giveaway once I reach 100 Facebook followers. Here is the Daily Mayo Facebook account.
Book Blogger Hop Question:
What is your favorite genre? List two of your favorite books in that genre.
I will read any genre, but the genre that is my absolute favorite is science fiction. But not just any science fiction- I want it to be a little creepy. I would love any book that mixed ghost stories with science fiction. My favorite science fiction book is probably Ender’s Game, but another one that I like really well is Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. You can see more of my favorite sci-fi books here.
FF Friday Question:
What were some of your favorite picture books as a kid? If you have kids, what are your favorites to read to them?
Actually, I didn’t like picture books so much as a child. My mom read us some pretty heavy literature when we were kids, including Dr. Dolittle, this version of Robin Hood, The Little House Books, and of all things, James Herriot’s books.
However, we did get some classic picture books in there. Favorites included: Pat the Bunny, Goodnight Moon, I Am A Bunny, and one that has stuck with me for years, Serina’s First Flight. That was a story about a little girl tooth fairy that is hard to find these days. I was able to score a copy on Ebay, and I still love it. The pictures are just beautiful. The story has that magical tone that sticks with you. I think a lot of my playtime was inspired by that book.
I also have a daughter who is 7 and a baby girl. My 7 year-old is too big for picture books now, but she likes The Underland Chronicles and the Magic Tree House series. My baby likes Pat the Bunny and anything that makes noise. She mostly listens to whatever big sister is reading at the moment.
Join the fun!
Tell me your favorite childhood stories and book genres below! Or join in the blog hop yourself!
If you want to follow Daily Mayo, Facebook is a great place right now. I plan to offer an exclusive giveaway once I reach 100 followers.
Another important aspect of becoming/remaining a good writer is maintaining your focus. I’m not sure if other writers are like this, but if I am distracted while writing, my writing is choppy and simply doesn’t flow. I must maintain complete focus on my writing and eliminate other distractions. When I do that,5 I can become part of the story and see it all unfold in my mind. It makes it much easier to write that way.
If you are the same way, I’ve uncovered some tips along the way that help with maintaining focus:
Write in a quiet place. I know a lot of people like to write in coffee shops and the like, but I cannot write well in an environment like that. Perhaps I am somewhat ADD, but all the foot traffic and noise keeps me from truly focusing on what I am doing.
Get comfortable. I don’t like writing sitting straight up at a desk. I don’t know if it is my homeschooling background or simply the fact that my brain functions best when I am relaxed, but for whatever reason, I write better when I feel comfortable.
A theme song can be inspiring. I once read that Douglas Adams listened to the One-Trick Pony album over and over while writing The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Since then, I have experimented with listening to a variety of song types while writing. For me, the songs can’t be too active or crazy, otherwise I lose focus. Classical music and folk-style music works best for me.
See yourself there. This is especially helpful for fiction writing. I like to imagine the scene as if I were watching it in a movie. What would the camera capture? What would be included in close-ups? That is what I try to describe in detail when writing fiction passages.
Disconnect from the Internet. The Internet distracts me. Some people say that writing on paper is better than writing on a screen, but I have not found that to be so. I type much faster than I write. I prefer to type my writings, but if I have Internet access, I usually waste way too much time. So, turning it off is helpful to me. There are also Internet-blocking apps you can download that will help you stay off the Internet when you are trying to get work done.
This is how I stay focused while writing. What are your focusing tips?