After 19 Years We Finally Get A Taste Of Wonka Bar

Have you had a taste of a Wonka Bar?
Have you had a taste of a Wonka Bar?
Neona Hill-Herrera

The movie “Wonka” was released on December 15, 2023, and the movie is an exploration about the backstory of the beloved character from the classic book by Roald Dahl and the movie “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” directed by Tim Burton. After 19 years since the most recent adaptation, the movie came with a new viewpoint of a colorful and interesting story. Willy Wonka, the man who started it all, was finally given his spotlight.


The movie starts off with Willy Wonka on a ship, sailing to his new destination in hopes of fulfilling his dream of starting his own chocolate factory. Wonka enters a new city with grand ambition to fulfill his dream. Wonka reaches the great hall in this city, and dreams about his factory and how it will bring joy to his new community. Seeing Wonka’s ambitions when he was young was an amazing addition to his backstory, and it added a touch of warmth to the chaos and comedy that is to come.

When Willy Wonka arrives, he is illiterate, and because of him being illiterate, he signs a contract in which he cannot read. The contract is from a hotel that he arrives at, and he signs it in order to stay the night. The real reason the contract was given to him was so the hotel can lock Wonka up for life and get free labor from him. To pay back what is in the contract, Wonka decides to sell “hoverchocs”, chocolates that make people fly. Because Wonka was unable to pay back his contract, he gets captured and is forced to work in a launderette (Laundromat). To see Wonka getting locked up by signing this contract is very heartbreaking, as he just reaches the town and wants to start his dream factory but then everything takes a turn for the worse and he is forced into signing a contract that will lock him up for life.

Wonka’s Chocolate Shop is a place where your sweetest dreams come true!! (Neona Hill-Herrera)

Wonka later escapes from his confines, and we then learn that his affinity for making chocolates stems from his late mother. To alleviate the debts Wonka owed from the contract, he and the other workers that escaped from the launderette go on a chocolate selling crusade. With the funds that were gained from selling chocolate, Wonka was finally able to open his dream chocolate store. From the crusade that Wonka went on to gather the funds to open his first store, we see an emotional tie to his affinity for chocolate. Being able to feel an emotional tie with Wonka really made the movie feel like not just another adaptation, but a whole new movie in itself that really shows the backstory of this beloved character.

Wonka is asked to leave the island by ship, but remembers the promise that he made to Noodle, one of the many friends that Wonka made while locked up. Wonka makes it back to the city to rescue Noodle, and the others from the launderette. This is an example of the true power of friendship, as Wonka remembers his friends and remembers his pinky promise to them.

Wonka and the captives go to expose the cartel, but get caught in a huge pickle. The cartel demands that Wonka give them his last jar of chocolate and hold him at gunpoint. They then get trapped in a pool of chocolate and almost drown.These elements of fear and suspense in these series of events makes the movie have a little bit of extra life in it. Of course soon after, something funny that is also chocolate related happens afterwards, and reminds people that we are watching a movie with Willy Wonka in it.

Just as they are about to drown, the Oompa Loompa rescues them as he smells the jar of chocolate Wonka gave away. He saves them, and they destroy the cartel’s whole chocolate supply. This was a really cool scene to watch as the audience is suspenseful waiting to see what happens, and just before they are about to drown in the chocolate the Oompa Loompa comes and saves them.

Wonka and the crew turn the cartel into the police, and they are sent to prison. Wonka sits down on a staircase and takes out the chocolate bar his mom made him. He decides to open it up and see the message his mom wrote for him. This is sort of the turning point in the movie, where after all the chaos is over, we get to have a break and a moment of relief. Everything settles here, and the movie turns into a more positive side of the story.

After all these years he finally finds the secret of his moms chocolate. The secret is: “What matters is who you share the chocolate with.’’ He then shares that final piece of chocolate with his friends and is ready to fulfill his dream. Wonka starts his factory and that’s when history is made. This was a really nice scene and it was very heartwarming. We get to finally see what Willy’s mom’s secret to making chocolate was and we get to see him fulfill his dream.

Reviews from the Writers:

From Matias Castro: Personally, I really enjoyed this movie and loved the storyline and music. I think Timothee Chalamet did an amazing job as Wonka. It was really cool to see the backstory of how it all started for Wonka and to see the legacy he started for his factory. Out of 5 stars I would rate this movie a 4. I really enjoyed it and thought it had very heartwarming moments but also funny moments. Overall It was a great movie and I recommend you watch it.

From Daniel Spears: I really enjoyed seeing how Wonka’s legacy was envisioned, and how much thought and detail was put into portraying the creation of a character that many people grew to love from past movies. Certain aspects of the movie like the music and hints of comedy I think really tied the whole thing together, and made the movie a full complete product. Given a 5 star rating, I would also give Wonka a 4. I really liked seeing such an interesting version of a childhood character, but for my personal taste in movies it just didn’t do the same for me as some other movies do. That’s all up to me of course, and my personal opinion, but I think there could have been some things implemented differently to make it more tasteful.

About the Contributors
Matias Castro, Staff Writer
Matias Castro is a student journalist who is a high school senior and a saxophonist. He is one of the staff writers of the Campus News Team for the Grizzly Gazette. He is in the school Marching band, Symphonic band, and Advanced jazz band. He was a part of the William S. Hart district honor jazz band for the last two years and in the Hart District Symphonic Honor Band for two years. He also did the Colburn jazz workshop last year and is currently in a jazz combo and big band at colburn. He likes covering music topics, mostly jazz related. He is passionate about this topic because he is involved in this and music takes up most of the time in his life. Being a part of a student newspaper means a lot to him as he will be able to write about things he is passionate about and will be able to express his thoughts. Some hobbies of his are playing the alto saxophone and  jazz is one of his main interests.
Daniel Spears, Staff Writer
Daniel Spears is a high school senior, a staff writer for the Campus News Team, and an aspiring saxophone player in the Santa Clarita Valley. He is in all of the band programs at school, including marching band, symphonic band, and advanced jazz band. He has made numerous honor groups through the William S. Hart School district, including the Hart District honor band for 2 years, and the Hart District honor jazz band for 1 year. The people selected to be in these groups are among some of the best musicians in the district, and potentially in the entire valley or state. Writing and researching music and the arts are what stand out to him the most, and covering these topics is definitely a specialty of his. Music is a big part of his life, and is what takes up most of his time outside of school. Being a part of the student newspaper, he wishes to cover topics that may be lesser known to people on the outside reading in.
Neona Hill-Herrera, Section Editor
Neona is a senior here at Golden Valley High School and the Section Editor for the CEPAT News Team for the Grizzly Gazette. She transferred over here during her Junior year and was quick to get involved with school activities. She's very passionate about journalism and making people aware of the world around them. GVTV has helped with her interest in student journalism. Her favorite thing to write about is music and the art to be found in it. Though music can’t be classified as a hobby, making music,  playlists and writing about it is Neona’s. When she graduates high school she would like to attend University of Oregon possibly majoring in Education. She dreams of landing a job as either a High School English teacher or elementary teacher to help sculpt young minds about music, art and culture.