Dickens in December Event: Oliver Twist (The Movie)
December 16, 2012 11 Comments
This weekend I watched Oliver Twist, the 2005 movie by Roman Polanski with Ben Kingsley, Barney Clark and Jamie Foreman. My kids (boys, 14 and 15) saw the old-fashioned streets and houses at the beginning of the movie and decided this was not for them. But they stayed to watch anyway and loved the story even though it lasted for over 2 hours!
Charles Dickens wrote Oliver Twist in the 1830s but the story is funny enough to be entertaining even for modern kids and adults. Oliver Twist is an orphan who is sent to work in a work house. When he asked for more food, after having been given a few spoonfuls of porridge as a meal, he is considered a rebel and “sold” to anyone who wants him (they get the boy PLUS 5 pounds). His new employers employ a terrible bully, just a few years older than Oliver, and he decides to elope to London.
In London, Oliver is quickly picked up by one of Fagin’s boys. Fagin is a crook who has a number of boys working for him as a pickpocket. But a wealthy man takes pity on Oliver, and adopts him, after which Fagin and his cronies try to get Oliver back.
It was a fun and entertaining story. I was surprised that a whole hour had passed when I happened to look at my watch. The movie definitely didn’t feel like two hours long. Everything about the movie seemed right, the cast, the setting (a believable London of the 1800s), the clothes, etc.
Rating: 5 (out of 5) – very good
Time: 130 minutes
First published: As a series in a newspaper, in 1837
I got this movie: borrowed it from the library