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42 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Adaptation Of Great Expectations That There Is!
Out of all the film adaptations of 'Great Expectations', this is by far the best. It captures the warm humour of each charcter, brilliantly and because the film is quite old, the Victorian England set would more or less exactly how it should be, as parts of London in 1946 would still be like that.
One day when pip is out in the Graveyard putting flowers on his...
Published on 22 Dec 2003 by no1filmaddict

versus
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Useful
This is the only version of GE that I have seen and I bought it because people said it was good for GCSE. Personally I was a little disappointed because so much was missed out. We didn't see the contrast between Wemmick at work and the Walford Wemmick who was prepared to help Pip. We missed out on Clara and her difficult father and the true reasons behind Magwitch's...
Published on 28 Dec 2009 by Year 9 Oxted


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42 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Adaptation Of Great Expectations That There Is!, 22 Dec 2003
Out of all the film adaptations of 'Great Expectations', this is by far the best. It captures the warm humour of each charcter, brilliantly and because the film is quite old, the Victorian England set would more or less exactly how it should be, as parts of London in 1946 would still be like that.
One day when pip is out in the Graveyard putting flowers on his parents grave, he comes across an escaped convict whom he takes food to. Many years later while doing his apprentiship as a blacksmith, he is given great wealth and property by an unknown benifactor. Pip has a few ideas of who it could be, but the truth is afr from what he imagined.
In my opinion this is probably one of Charles Dicken's best novels, and even probably one of the best novels ever written. As you will know, reading a Dickens novel is not the easiest of books to read, and this excelent adaptation, allows you to watch it instaed. I do recommend though, that you read the book first as it will assist your understanding of the film, even though the film is very clear as to what is happening.
The acting is simply perfect, especially from young Pip and young Estella who almost seem to 'be' Pip and Estela who have jumped off the pages and come to life. This is what makes a good adaptation.
If you have read the book, then this is a must-see, and if you haven't, then this is still a must see, simply because it is a great film. Beware though, it is in black and white, but this shouldn't matter.
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46 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best film adaptation of Great Expectations ever, 8 Mar 2000
By A Customer
From the wonderfully eerie opening scenes on the Essex marshes and Finlay Currie's menacing appearance in a foggy graveyard, you can tell straight away this is a winner. As the story of this "gentleman of great expectations" unfolds, you are treated to one of cinema's classics. David Lean's moody direction keeps you gripped throughout, but it's the acting that really makes the movie: John Mills and Alec Guiness both turn in great performances, and the incidental characters such as Francis L Sullivan's bluff Jaggers and the bumbling but sweet Joe Gargery supplied by Bernard Miles simply steal the show. There have been at least ten versions of this film made. If you only watch one, make it this one: It's a cracker!
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Gold Standard!, 21 Jun 2008
By 
F. S. L'hoir (Irvine, CA) - See all my reviews
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There are some films, such as "Casablanca," that should never be remade. David Lean's "Great Expectations" is one of them.

The cast--headed by John Mills as the grown-up Pip, and which includes the rotund Francis L. Sullivan as the lawyer Jagger (whose clients are hanged as a matter of course), Finlay Curry as the convict Magwitch, and Alec Guinness as Herbert Pocket--is pitch-perfect (although I always thought that Valerie Hobson was a bit of a disappointment after the brittle hauteur of Jean Simmons).

This film has everything: humor, suspense, and a lack of the sentimentality that seems to have crept into Dickensian films of late.

Lean, who was to become famous for his sweeping desolate landscapes of "Lawrence of Arabia" and "Dr. Zhivago," captures the essence of the lonely English fog-bound marshes with swirling swathes of grey in this glorious black and white film. The image of young Estella (a bewitching Jean Simmons) leading young Pip by candlelight up the darkened staircase into the cobweb-enshrouded inner sanctum of the demented Miss Havisham (the incomparable Martita Hunt) is unforgettable, as is the sight of the jilted bride's rat-infested wedding cake. Without computer-generated effects or even color, David Lean has created a cinematic masterpiece.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Expectations on DVD, 11 Dec 2006
By 
Gemma Watson "LittleStarGem" (Sheffield, UK) - See all my reviews
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Having seen, and been disappointed in, many book-to-film adaptations, this particular version surprised me. It is very true to the book, and apart from Orlick and the Pockets, leaves no major character's story out. The dialogue is mostly lifted straight from Dicken's text, and yet still works quite well on film. The settings are very realistic, Satis House is very impressive and almost exactly as I imagined it to be. If I remember correctly, the ending of the film is the same as the original ending that Dicken's wrote - this helps to tie the film up and works better than the published ending.

My only criticisms would be that John Mills, although a very fine actor, is a poor 'older Pip' for the simple reason that he looks far too old. He was in fact 38 when he made the film by my reckoning... and is not a very believable 20 year old Pip in my opinion. The young Pip (Anthony Wager) and young Estella (Jean Simmons) on the other hand are exactly how I imagined them to be. By the end of the film, it feels like too much has happened in too short a time, and it is quite hard to keep track of everything that has gone on - this is only to be expected considering the length and complexity of the novel, and I for one appreciate that it did not cut any sub-plots out despite the possibility of confusion.

I recommend that you definitely read it first, only then will you be able to appreciate the film fully.

GVW
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39 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Expectations - great film, 10 July 2004
This versions of Dicken's classic novel "great expectations" is a fantastic adaptation of the book. It follows the book very well and it's the best version i have seen so far out of all 3 versions.
All the actors/actresses are fantastic and i thoroughly enjoyed watching it at school so i bought it. I have been watching it ever since.
The film only misses out a few characters, such as Orlick, who worked for Joe and there are only 1 or two other characters missed out.
So i suggest you buy it, it may be in black and white but it adds to the effect and makes it most enjoyable.
The actor who plays the convict at the beginning
is fantstic when he approaches Pip in the graveyard .
So my advise to you is to buy this.
I am only 15 and have thouroughly enjoyed it.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A cinema classic, 26 Feb 2011
By 
M. Joyce (Cairo, Egypt) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Great Expectations [DVD] (DVD)
This is truly a film classic. David Lean's films of "Great Expectations" and "Oliver Twist" leave subsequent versions (both film and TV) standing; the cinematography is superb and no other director captures both the genial eccentricity of Dickens's grotesques and the underlying sense of menace which pervades the works. John Mills and Valerie Hobson both look a little mature for the "adult" Pip and Estella, but the former in particular is very good. The young Jean Simmons is especially striking as the young Estella. The performances of the supporting roles are, one might suggest, definitive. These are, of course, the "best parts" in Dickens and a gift to any resourceful character actor. Especially striking are the Mr Jaggers of Francis L. Sullivan (who was surely born to play in Dickens), the grand guignol Miss Havisham of Martita Hunt, Alec Guinness's lively Herbert Pockit, the warmth and humanity of Bernard Miles as Joe Gargery and, notably, Finlay Currie's Magwitch; his appearance in the churchyard is deservedly a classic. A must for any collection!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply superb!, 27 July 2011
By 
The CinemaScope Cat - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Great Expectations [DVD] (DVD)
A young boy (Anthony Wager) provides a kindness to an escaped convict (Finlay Currie) who is soon recaptured. Later, an eccentric woman (Martita Hunt) invites him to her estate so she can watch him play with her ward (Jean Simmons). The consequences of these events determine the boy's future as a young man (John Mills). This not quite faithful rendering of the Charles Dickens novel is one of David Lean's best films. Unlike so many films based on classic literary works, there's a vitality and texture that keeps the spirit of the novel so that one can overlook the handful of incidents that have been eliminated or changed from the novel's transition to the screen. The only major nuisance is the foisted happy ending which seems terribly at odds with all that preceded it. While Mills and Valerie Hobson (who plays the adult Simmons) don't make any false steps, they lack the perfection of their cast mates who seem to have walked right out of the pages of the novel. Most notably Hunt, Currie, Wager who's such a natural that he puts Hollywood's child actors of the era to shame and a young Alec Guinness as Mills' compatriot. Guy Green (who would later become a director himself) won an Oscar for the fleecy B&W cinematography and there's a beauty of a score by Walter Goehr. With Francis L. Sullivan, Bernard Miles, Torin Thatcher and Freda Jackson.

The ITV DVD from Great Britain boasts a handsome B&W transfer.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What larks!, 5 Feb 2011
By 
S. Swingler (Somerset,UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Great Expectations [DVD] (DVD)
God, what can one say about this masterpiece. David Lean was a master film maker. The cinematography is exemplary and the script supreme and true to the book. A masterpiece.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "What larks,Pip,old boy!", 26 Dec 2010
By 
technoguy "jack" (Rugby) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Great Expectations [DVD] (DVD)
Simply the best film David Lean ever made.From it's opening scary scene in the church graveyard,seizing you by the kneck, to the interior of Miss Havisham's time-stopped,rotting mansion and the greatest casting ever.The whole way it treats the theme of young Pip maturing into a gentleman, and not realizing Jagger's' dictum: "Take nothing on looks,take everything on evidence".The beautiful plotting and pacing of Dicken's greatest novel.The beautiful scenes with Alec Guiness as his flatmate,Herbert Pocket,in London.The secret source of his wealth in the terrifying Magwitch(Finlay Curry).A beautful but cruel Estella in Jean Simmons who slaps young Pip's face or lets him kiss her.The scary Miss Havisham(Hunt) with her desire to break men's hearts through Estella as hers had been broken.Joe Gargery(Miles),Pip's touching,loyal brother-in-law,the gargantuan Mr Jaggers(Sullivan)lawyer,who brings the news of Pip's great expectations thanks to a mysterious benefactor.The powerful dilineation of class differences in the scenes with Bernard Miles as Joe Gargery.There is nothing to compare with this in the Dicken's canon.It is the high point of post-war British cinema.The best ever translation of a book to cinema,the best ever filming of a Dickens' novel.The great contrast between rustic honesty and urban shallowness of the two world's Pip inhabits.The recreation of 19th century London.This is better than the epics he later did,there is no time or room for self-indulgence,due to the tight budget and schedule with a complex tale to be told with no moment to spare. Excellent cinematic vision and cinematography.The best ever Dicken's novel with its themes of class, wealth, poverty,the law and its amazing gallery of characters.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 29 Aug 2008
By 
J. Probert - See all my reviews
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The film itself: Fabulous rendition of the classic by Charles Dickens. John Mills plays the part with elegance and style. Great.

Quality: Compared to a normal DVD this Blu Ray disk is very crisp. However (not a bad thing), if you are familiar with photography jargon, the film appears to be shot with a very high ISO throughout. But worth getting the Blue Ray version.
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Great Expectations [DVD]
Great Expectations [DVD] by David Lean (DVD - 2008)
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