Based on Charles Dickens' novel, this adaptation traces the childhood of an orphan whose mother dies giving birth to him in an English work-house in the 1820s. Little Oliver Twist, already ... See full summary »
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1999  
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Cast

Series cast summary:
...
 Mrs Bedwin (4 episodes, 1999)
...
 Monks (4 episodes, 1999)
...
 Mr Brownlow (4 episodes, 1999)
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 Elizabeth Leeford (4 episodes, 1999)
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 Mrs. Mann (4 episodes, 1999)
David Ross ...
 Mr Bumble (4 episodes, 1999)
Sam Smith ...
 Oliver Twist (3 episodes, 1999)
John Grillo ...
 Mr Grimwig (3 episodes, 1999)
Charlotte Le Moignan ...
 Young Rose Fleming (3 episodes, 1999)
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 Nancy (3 episodes, 1999)
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 Fagin (3 episodes, 1999)
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 Bill Sikes (3 episodes, 1999)
Alex Crowley ...
 Artful Dodger (3 episodes, 1999)
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 Rose Fleming (3 episodes, 1999)
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 Bet (3 episodes, 1999)
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 Charley Bates (3 episodes, 1999)
Liz Smith ...
 Sally (2 episodes, 1999)
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 Homely Maid (2 episodes, 1999)
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 Mr Fleming / ... (2 episodes, 1999)
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 Giles (2 episodes, 1999)
Morgan Jones ...
 Brittles (2 episodes, 1999)
...
 Agnes Fleming (2 episodes, 1999)
David Bark-Jones ...
 Dr. Losberne (2 episodes, 1999)
Laura Grace Cockroft ...
 Chertsey Maid (2 episodes, 1999)
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 Edwin Leeford (2 episodes, 1999)
Rosalind March ...
 Mrs Corney / ... (2 episodes, 1999)
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 Woodcroft (2 episodes, 1999)
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 Mr Sowerberry / ... (2 episodes, 1999)
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 Blacksmith Bignall (2 episodes, 1999)
Alan Pentony ...
 Pedlar (2 episodes, 1999)
Hilary Sesta ...
 Martha, Female Pauper (2 episodes, 1999)
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Storyline

Based on Charles Dickens' novel, this adaptation traces the childhood of an orphan whose mother dies giving birth to him in an English work-house in the 1820s. Little Oliver Twist, already abused, starved and overworked, is apprenticed to an undertaker and runs away to London after being bullied by an older apprentice. There, he is taken in by Fagin, a fence and thief-trainer, and his gang of pickpockets. He is befriended by Nancy, a good-hearted prostitute, and meets her lover, the brutal housebreaker Bill Sikes. But attempts by the gang to discredit him result in his being taken in by Mr. Brownlow, a wealthy and charitable man, who proves the catalyst for Oliver's discovery of his background and identity. Here Alan Bleasdale's dramatisation differs from Dickens' novel, in that Oliver does not fall into Brownlow's hands by coincidence, and we already know his back story: he's the child of a young woman named Agnes Fleming and her married lover, Edwin Leeford, who dies while on a trip... Written by G.M. Baxter

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Drama

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Release Date:

8 October 2000 (USA)  »

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(4 parts)

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The very flowery wording in the episode titles is based on the language which Charles Dickens used for the chapter titles in his original novel "Oliver Twist". See more »

Quotes

Fagin: What would happen, if you would kill me, Bill?
Bill Sikes: Ahhh, I'd go to the gallows, Fagin.
See more »

Connections

Version of Le théâtre de la jeunesse: Oliver Twist (1962) See more »

Soundtracks

Fantasia for Piano 4 Hands in F Minor
Music by Franz Schubert
Played onscreen by Michael Kitchen
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An incredible version of a Dickens classic.
10 May 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Some have taken Alan Beasdale to task for rewriting some aspects of the original Dickens story, but I think it was all for the best. It may not match the original story, but taken completely on its own it is nonetheless very compelling and captures the essence of the original well enough while adding some nice new elements.

This is a top notch production in every respect... writing, direction, acting, music, sets, costumes, etc. Robert Lindsay as Fagin is astounding among an absolutely terrific cast, with Sam Smith playing just the right light note as Oliver and Marc Warren a dutifully creepy Monks.

I've seen the whole thing twice now and enjoyed it even more the second time, with the six hours of it seeming to fly by. 10 out of 10


6 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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