7.8/10
21,693
114 user 64 critic

Great Expectations (1946)

Approved | | Adventure, Drama, Mystery | 22 May 1947 (USA)
A humble orphan suddenly becomes a gentleman with the help of an unknown benefactor.

Director:

David Lean

Writers:

Charles Dickens (by), David Lean (adapted for the screen by) | 4 more credits »
Won 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Mills ... Pip
Tony Wager ... Young Pip (as Anthony Wager)
Valerie Hobson ... Estella
Jean Simmons ... Young Estella
Bernard Miles ... Joe Gargery
Francis L. Sullivan ... Mr. Jaggers
Finlay Currie ... Magwitch
Martita Hunt ... Miss Havisham
Alec Guinness ... Herbert Pocket
Ivor Barnard ... Mr. Wemmick
Freda Jackson ... Mrs.Joe
Eileen Erskine ... Biddy
George Hayes ... Convict
Hay Petrie ... Uncle Pumblechook
John Forrest John Forrest ... The Pale Young Gentleman
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Storyline

Pip, a good-natured, gullible young orphan, lives with kind blacksmith Joe Gargery and his bossy, abusive wife "Mrs. Joe". When the boy finds two hidden escaped galley convicts, he obeys under, probably unnecessary, threat of a horrible death to bring the criminals food. He must steal at peril of more caning from the battle-ax. Just when Pip fears to get it really good while they have guests, a soldier comes for Joe who takes Pip along as assistant to work on the chains of the escaped galley-convicts, who are soon caught. The better-natured one takes the blame for the stolen food. Later Pip is invited to became the playmate of Estella, the equally arrogant adoptive daughter of gloomy, filthy rich Miss Havisham at her estate, who actually has "permission" to break the kind kid's heart. Being the only pretty girl he ever saw, she wins his heart forever, even after a mysterious benefactor pays through a lawyer for his education and a rich allowance, so he can become a snob in London, by ... Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Great Thrills! Great Romance! Great Suspense! Great Adventure! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Valerie Hobson was widely considered to be miscast as the adult Estella. See more »

Goofs

After Uncle Pumblechook parks his carriage in front of the gate at Satis House and drops off the young Pip, Estella leads Pip away from the gate. First, the carriage is clearly seen parked outside the gate. In a later shot, as Pip is walking, the carriage is gone, and in a subsequent shot, the carriage is back in view outside the gate again. See more »

Quotes

Mr. Jaggers: I have a pretty large experience of boys and you're a bad lot of fellows.
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Crazy Credits

Martita Hunt plays Miss Havisham, and receives screen credit for it, but she can also be heard as the voice of the cow who, in Pip's mind, disapproves of him stealing food to give to Magwitch ("Somebody else's pork pie!"). She receives no screen credit for playing the voice of the cow. See more »

Alternate Versions

In some prints, after the fifteen minute "convict episode" at the beginning of the film ends, we hear the adult Pip's (John Mills) voice-over saying, "it was a year later", as Mrs. Joe arrives home in the carriage. As now usually shown, there is no voice-over in this sequence. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Good Eats: Crepe Expectations (2001) See more »

User Reviews

Great version of the Dickens novel...beautiful B&W photography...
28 May 2001 | by DoylenfSee all my reviews

The Dickens novel is given classic treatment in David Lean's "Great Expectations". The opening scene is so atmospheric it sets the tone for the convoluted story to follow. The earlier scenes with young Pip are the most enjoyable for me--especially those involving Estella (Jean Simmons) and Miss Havisham (Martita Hunt).

Brilliant performances from all concerned. John Mills is wholly satisfying as the adult Pip and Valerie Hobson as the adult Estella--but it is Martita Hunt's Miss Havisham, sitting among the ruined finery of a wedding that never took place, everything exactly the way it was on that fateful day--and waging war on men ever since--that lingers in the memory.

Some of the best black and white photography seen until that time and an absorbing story with twists and surprises that have logical explanations. Compares favorably with the other great British film, "Oliver Twist" and, by all means, recommended viewing.

Not only worthy of its Best Picture nomination, it should have won over "Gentleman's Agreement" which now seems preachy and artificial.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 May 1947 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Great Expectations See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

GBP350,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$19,329
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Cineguild See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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