As children, my father used to take my sister and I to the library on Saturday mornings (probably so my mom could sleep in) and let us choose out some movies (VHS of course...DV-what?). Usually some MGM musical or old episodes of Reading Rainbow made their way home with us and we would enjoy them during a family movie night. My deep obsession for chocolate and oompa loompas was realized when watching Willy Wonka and the Chocolate factory, and my crush on Gene Kelly started with Singin' in the Rain.
There was one movie however that made a lasting impression on me....in a bad way. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. For those of you who have seen it, you may know of what I speak. At first, the idea of a couple of kids, their eccentric father, and a flying car have all the ingredients of a great family movie. And that's exactly what I thought when I started watching it with my daughter...but oh how your memory can fail you. The first half an hour or so are cutesy enough, but when they get into the weird dream sequence part, things go downhill, fast. Here are the things that creep me out the most:
Creepiness Factors in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
1. The indecipherable grandfather who is always hanging out in his outhouse. Gross.
2. The flirty little number sung between the Bavarian King and his child-hating queen. (She is wearing some sexy little number and he in his bathrobe, prancing around the bedroom trying to kill each other. ) Weird.
3. The Child Catcher. This dude is the stuff nightmares are made of. As soon as I saw his face again, all these years later, it took all of my power not to curl into a fetal position and sob. He's scary, he lures children into cages with candy, he does the moonwalk...Oh wait, that's someone else.... (too soon?)
4. Benny Hill plays the toymaker. It is probably his only role which does not involve chasing around women in bikinis.
Please don't watch this movie. (If you really can't make that promise, I humbly offer this clip to you as a cautionary measure)