Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Willy Wonka And Religion

The movie Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is a religious parable. Hear me out. Arthur Slugworth (the stand-in for the devil), the black-suited, seemingly malevelent creepo, approaches each Golden Ticket-winning child and offers them each a bargain -- betray Willy Wonka (God) by swiping the Everlasting Gobstopper (the apple) and he will shower him with riches.

At the end of the film, Slugworth is found to be simply a lowly employee of Wonka posing as a rival. Wonka, though, being all powerful, cannot possibly have a true rival. He has simply used Slugworth to do what he loves most, which is mess with people and test their purity of heart with cruel temptations.

Slugworth represents quick-fix temptation over the long-term good. To Wonka's feigned dismay and barely restrained amusement, each child proves unworthy of inheriting the kingdom of Wonka's factory. Most agree to succumb to Slugworth's influence to spite Wonka, whose ways they don't comprehend. And each is summarily cast out.

Only by taking all of Wonka's crap without protest does Charlie prove worthy of remaining in Wonka's presence. He receives eternal riches, is lifted from poverty to wealth, and not only is accepted into Wonka's kingdom, but is deemed Wonka's successor.

Not sure what the Oompa Loompas represent. Maybe the disciples?

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