Great Expectations (2011)

TV Mini-Series  -   -  Drama
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 4,491 users  
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The orphan Pip becomes a gentleman when his life is transformed by a mystery benefactor.

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Won 4 Primetime Emmys. Another 7 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »



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Series cast summary:
 Pip (3 episodes, 2011)
 Dolge Orlick (3 episodes, 2011)
 Abel Magwitch (3 episodes, 2011)
 Jaggers (3 episodes, 2011)
 Compeyson / ... (3 episodes, 2011)
 Joe Gargery (3 episodes, 2011)
 Miss Havisham (3 episodes, 2011)
 Estella (3 episodes, 2011)
 Pumblechook (3 episodes, 2011)
 Herbert Pocket (2 episodes, 2011)
 Hannah (2 episodes, 2011)
Paul Ritter ...
 Wemmick (2 episodes, 2011)
 Bentley Drummle (2 episodes, 2011)
Steve Lately ...
 Mike (2 episodes, 2011)
 Molly (2 episodes, 2011)
 Mrs. Joe (2 episodes, 2011)
 Clara (2 episodes, 2011)
 Mrs. Brandley (2 episodes, 2011)


The orphan Pip becomes a gentleman when his life is transformed by a mystery benefactor.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis



Parents Guide:





Release Date:

1 April 2012 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Charles Dickens' Große Erwartungen  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(3 episodes)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Harry Lloyd (Herbert Pocket) is the great-great-great-grandson of Charles Dickens, on whose 1861 novel this production is based. See more »


Remade as Great Expectations (2012) See more »

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User Reviews

2 April 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I can fault a film for leaving out bits of book due to time constraints but a TV should be able to flesh it out more having more time a leeway. SO when they leave out characters and scenes that are integral to the themes of a book it irks me.

But my main issue with this production is that all the themes and symbolism in the book got tossed out in place of a LOVE STORY! The characters have been changed from their true natures to some clichéd Hollywood tripe.

There worst is Miss Havisham and Mrs. Joe.

Miss Havisham is not nearly as crazy and bitter as she should be. She comes more as a fairy queen or some kind of ghost.

There is NO maid at Miss Havisham's there is Estella because Estella is being trained to break men's hearts by Havisham! Not that you would know from this version. Miss Havisham is all wrong in her speech "Love her pip." WHAT?! She is bitter about love, she would NEVER say that. And she NEVER invites Pip back, Pip goes of his own accord to find Estella who has abroad to mainland Europe. Also she NEVER comes down to greet people they go UP to see her. There are no lighted windows in the house and Estella must lead all guests by candle light. And as I envisioned it, there are a lot more clocks.

Also she is cold and rude and snobby and she NEVER runs after pip. She has been trained that way.

Mrs. Gargery is not NEARLY as awful as she was in the book, which is particularly vexing for me as I had mother just like her. Mrs. Gargey says "I'm so proud of you pip!" HUH?! That is totally out of character. She takes the money Pip earned and goes out to celebrate, scolding Pip for not being in a good mood when he has just been indentured to Joe. She raised pip and Joe by hand and you hardly see that. It just looks like a standard household with the usual quarrels not what Dicken's showed us at all.

Mr. Gargery was a kind-hearted simpleton who said next to nothing in the book but here he's all ready to do the right thing and take action. And his kinship with Pip is totally off because Mrs. Joe is not nasty enough so that bond between Pip and Joe gets tossed aside.

Pip seems to old by the end of the first episode and he seem endowed with too must consciousness from the start, in that the convict doesn't ask him to get food, he brings it of his own choosing AND he doesn't bring the whole pie! Which, throws off the later incident when he is almost found out.

And there is no Biddy which provides a contrast to Havisham's AND provides Pip with a very important lesson in that wealth and power and learnin' doesn't = happiness. For when Pip offers to raise Joe up from his station when Pip has become a gentlemen, she counters saying that maybe Joe is happy where he is.

Pumblechook in the book came off as an asshole but not a scheming one who when Mrs. Joe falls ill he smirks and says some line about moving up and on without her.

It is things like this that really bugged me. I didn't mind not having the Jolly Bargemen scenes if you had to cut something but to needlessly change the characters personalities was stupid because it alters Dicken's intentions and the lessons he was telling. I don't know WHY they did it but it was EPIC FAIL.

And as a last complaint, I think the film (i.e. characters, sets etc) could've been much much filthier just as Dicken's describes it.

If you've haven't read the book this version will be fine but nothing outstanding.

If you haven't read the book DO SO NOW.

If you have read the book, you can watch this if you want to yell at the screen the whole time. Or you can just avoid and keep your version of Miss Havisham safely in your head.

5 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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I'm sorry, but Gillian Anderson was too YOUNG... Cali7
Dislike the fact they cut out an important character HannahBanana123
Am impressed so far! fiona97
2 questions... rufusredcoat
What happened to the money? scott-hillier
What a true friend Herbert Pocket was! fiona97
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