It's safe to assume that Tim Burton has issues. Every movie he makes focuses on dark characters and ominous overtones. Especially his animation forays. So it's no surprise that even when he's remaking a classic his flair for creepiness is brought to the forefront again. It doesn't matter to him that "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" should essentially be a children's movie.
The biggest reason I wanted to see it was to see if Johnny Depp really did play Willie Wonka as creepy and pedophilic as the trailers led to believe. He definitely had the creepy factor down; however, his Wonka was a bit more sadistic. Seemingly happy to see the children experience their mishaps.
There were several departures this one took from the original. The major one being that since it wasn't a musical, that left more room for some storytelling. Burton utilized that to capitalize on delving into Wonka's history. Why was he the way he is? Nice effort, but we didn't need that. It took away from the mystery that is Willie Wonka.
Normally there are few actors out there that are better character actors that Depp. He's no different here. Unfortunately for him, he was cursed with trying to re-invent an icon that Gene Wilder made famous. It was a near impossible task. Even for someone with Depp's immense talent.
It shouldn't be fair to compare this one to the original but it's inevitable. Burton tried to add elements to re-imagine the story. His efforts just didn't work for me. In this case, he probably should have left well enough alone.
My rating: D