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 ... See full summary »
A young American woman (Sydne Rome) traveling through Italy finds herself in a strange Mediterranean villa where nothing seems right. Her visit becomes an absurd, decadent, oversexed ... See full summary »
British couple Fiona and Nigel Dobson are sailing to Istanbul en route to India. They encounter a beautiful French woman, and that night Nigel meets her while dancing alone in the ship's ... See full summary »
Kristin Scott Thomas,
A wounded criminal and his dying partner take refuge at a beachfront castle. The owners of the castle, a meek Englishman and his willful French wife, are initially the unwilling hosts to ... See full summary »
Oliver Twist is an orphan, who is soon kicked out of the orphanage and thrown into a terrible home. The bad treatment Oliver receives, forces him to run off to London. Here, he is soon picked up by the Artful Dodger and taken to Fagin. Fagin treats Oliver well, but is it the life Oliver really wants? Written by
The Charles Dickens novel Oliver Twist has many more characters and subplots than can be fit into a just-over-2-hours film. This version narrows down and streamlines the story to focus on Oliver Twist, Mr. Brownlow, Fagin, Bill Sikes, Nancy, and the Artful Dodger. The novel's other characters Mr. Bumble, Mrs. Mann, Mrs. Corney, Noah Claypole, Charlotte, Mr. Monks, the Maylie family, the Fleming family, and the Leeford family, are all either relegated to brief cameo roles or omitted entirely from the story. See more »
Flipped shot: At 46:55, after Oliver is punched in the face while running from the crowd, the lettering on a hand held sign ('ELECTION') is backwards. See more »
'MORE' will be the last thing on your mind, if you can sit through this unnecessary, and under-whelming remake of the Dicken's classic. It beggars belief that Polanski, the same man responsible for the award-winning The Pianist, could go wrong with such a quality story to work with, but he has and spectacularly so. The first mistake was made in his young leading man. Forget pickpocketing, Islington lad Barney Clarke is guilty of one of the most ordinary performances in a title role ever seen on the big screen. With a few exceptions, his take on the supposedly lovable urchin Oliver involved little more than gratuitous overacting, an annoying sulking pout, sad puppy dog eyes and the personality and presence of a wooden puppet. When you're half way through the film and your hero has barely uttered a sentence, and you couldn't give a damn what happens to him, you know you're in trouble. This frustrating lack of character development is not confined to just Oliver. Polanski has managed to stifle the potential of every character in the cast Nancy, Sykes, the artful Dodger. None are given any priority in Polanksi's streamlined summary of Dicken's tale hence leaving them all as shallow, substance-less souls merely filling up a few minutes screen time here and there. So fleetingly are they presented, it's near impossible to become interested in their plights and actions, or to understand their motivations and what they (should) contribute to the story. Even Fagin, superbly played by Ben Kingsley, is sidelined as an ensemble character, despite providing the film's most animated personality, and is incredibly wasted in the role of the thieving mentor. David Lean's 1948 version and even Carol Reed's 1968 musical Oliver! are superior to this one, both delivering the emotional roller-coaster that Oliver's journey should be. Polanski's film moves from high to low at astonishing speed, but the climaxes are painfully dull and appear to be just going through the motions. Polanski is consistent though. The empty plot is wanton right up to the dreary, drawn out conclusion. On a positive note, the grim vision of 19th century London that he has created is glorious. Looks though aren't everything are they especially in this case. Please sir, no more.
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