Date: 02/04/2024 Times: 7:30 pm - 9:25 pm

Here’s a special film for the Easter holidays. Please don’t assume that this is a children’s film. It’s a film for all ages and has plenty to charm every member of the family. As tickets for children and students are now free, bring some of your younger friends and relatives! It is based on Roald Dahl’s book Charlie and the Chocolate Factory but has the same writers and director behind it as the wonderful Paddington films. It’s a prequel to the book, with Willy Wonka, in his youth, possessed of a much sunnier disposition than he has when older. It was nominated for a BAFTA for Best British Film of the Year and Timothée Chalamet was nominated for Best Actor in a Musical in the Golden Globe Awards. The Guardian placed it at number 34 in its top 50 films of 2023.

Wonka tells the wondrous story of how the world’s greatest inventor, magician and chocolate-maker became the beloved Willy Wonka we know today. This warmly old-fashioned film puts a suitably sweet spin on the classic character while still leaving some room for the source material’s darker undertones. Timothée Chalamet’s half-formed boy-man is an adorably perky optimist who is only ever a heel click away from a full song and dance number. Wonka is very much a musical and the music – original songs by Neil Hannon (the singer-songwriter of the Divine Comedy), score by Joby Talbot – holds up well. Where the film excels is in the wildly inventive musical set pieces. A central sequence in which Wonka launches a guerrilla sweet-distribution operation is a giddily ingenious sugar rush that uses every last square inch of the densely detailed set. And a rooftop aerial helium balloon dance sends our spirits soaring skywards, along with the cast members. There are some wonderful cameo performances by a cast of British actors: Olivia Coleman, Matt Lucas, Paterson Joseph and Jim Carter, amongst others.


Year: 2023

Country: UK

Cert: PG

Duration: 116 mins

Dir: Paul King

'A delightfully magical tale featuring a wonderful and tender performance from Timothée Chalamet.'

Venue: William Loveless Hall