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Oliver Twist (1948)

Not Rated | | Drama | 30 July 1951 (USA)
An orphan named Oliver Twist meets a pickpocket on the streets of London. From there, he joins a household of boys who are trained to steal for their master.

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(by), (screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Howard Davies ...
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Kay Walsh ...
Francis L. Sullivan ...
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Mary Clare ...
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Josephine Stuart ...
Ralph Truman ...
Kathleen Harrison ...
Gibb McLaughlin ...
Amy Veness ...
Frederick Lloyd ...
...
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Storyline

Based on the Charles Dickens novel Oliver Twist is about an orphan boy who runs away from a workhouse and meets a pickpocket on the streets of London. Oliver is taken in by the pickpocket and he joins a household of young boys who are trained to steal for their master. This version of Oliver Twist is topped by Alec Guinness's masterly performance of arch-thug Fagin. Written by Jenny Evans <J.Evans@uts.edu.au>

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A Screen Event To Be Remembered For All Time !

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

30 July 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

As Aventuras de Oliver Twist  »

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Technical Specs

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Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Alfie Bass was considered for the the Artful Dodger, until Kay Walsh, David Lean's wife at the time, recommended Anthony Newley who was with her in Vice Versa (1948). See more »

Goofs

At the beginning as the storm rages there are two successive shots of shaking bare tree branches silhouetted against the storm clouds. On the second shot a crew member's hand and forearm can be seen shaking this branch. See more »

Quotes

Nancy: [about Oliver] I thieved for you when I was a child not half his age, and I've thieved for you ever since, don't you know it!
Fagin: And if you have, it is your living!
Nancy: Aye, it is. It is my living. And you're the wretch that drove me to them long ago, and that'll keep me there, day and night, day and night, DAY AND NIGHT!
See more »

Connections

Version of Oliver Twist (1922) See more »

Soundtracks

He Don't Know When To Stop
(uncredited)
Music by Frederick Lewis
Lyrics by Ronald Hill
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User Reviews

 
The Best-Looking B&W Movie Ever
23 December 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

After viewing over 10,000 movies, I still have the same opinion I had after I saw this movie the first time and had watched maybe a thousand films at that point: this is simply the best-looking black-and-white film I've ever seen.

On the Criterion DVD, scene after scene is just jaw-dropping. I have never seen so many incredible shots with wonderful contrasts of light and dark. Much of this is filmed dark rooms or nighttime in the cobblestone streets. Those scenes, combined with many facial closeups, great buildings, and interesting camera angles, all make this an incredible viewing experience.

All of this helps make up for watching a depressing story. It was just unappealing, at least to me, because all the people except for the little boy are unlikable. Some of them mistreat the little kid and that's difficult to watch. I'm a sucker for nice people, especially an innocent child, and to see suffer is not fun to me.

One of those bad guys, however, is memorable: Fagin, played by Alec Guiness. In this film, he has to be one of the ugliest people I've ever seen, sporting the biggest nose ever put on screen. A teenage Anthony Newley as "the artful Dodger" also stands out.

But, as someone who is into art, David Lean's direction and Guy Green's camera-work draw me back to this DVD every couple of years...and at least I always know there is a happy ending for the one nice kid in the film.


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