Charles Dickens famous novel of an orphan boy, Oliver Twist, who escapes from his poor life to seek his fame and fortune in London, is adapted as a glossy musical.
Who would have thought that a story from the brilliant Dickens could be so sweet and endearing? So it be with Carol Reed's (Best Director Winner) unforgettable 1968 Best Picture Winner. Yes it's some way away from the essence of the source, those in need of that should be seeking out David Lean's fabulous 1948 version, but with an array of wonderful tunes and choreography, this Oliver is a treat for all the family. The cast are uniformly strong, notably Ron Moody (Fagin), Oliver Reed (who as Bill Sykes is probably playing himself!), Mark Lester (Oliver) and the fabulous Jack Wild (The Artful Dodger). While Lionel Bart's songs are as timeless as they are engaging.
The 60s was a tough decade for cinematic musicals, with many of them turning out to be bloated exercises in tedium. But Oliver! is one of the shining lights in the genre, a true uplifter guaranteed to have the feet a tapping and the smile firmly implanted on ones face. So if you have yet to see and be charmed by it? Come on in, join our number and consider yourself one of us. 8/10
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