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'Inspired by' the original text...,
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This review is from: Oliver Twist [DVD] (DVD)
In order to enjoy this six-hour adaptation, you need to be aware that it was 'inspired by' the original text of Oliver Twist. The first hour and a half (one quarter of the adaptation) is not in the book at all and is an 'explanation' of what 'might' have led up to events described late in the book. There are lots of other differences from the book, eg Oliver's father is murdered, there is a relative with a large growth on his neck, and the evil murderess Mrs Leeford is a central character in this adaptation, but barely mentioned in the book. The Artful Dodger is a youth of 16-17, rather than a boy. Fagin, for some reason, does conjuring tricks! Monks has an epileptic fit every time he's persuaded to do something that conflicts with his better nature. If you can accept all this, you will probably feel, as I did, that all performances are outstanding, as is the direction and period detail - altogether a high-quality production. However, I do worry that I will now confuse my memory of the actual book with the events in this production, as they are so very different. So do be aware that this isn't Oliver Twist as Dickens wrote it!