Great Expectations

Film, Drama
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Great Expectations
Great Expectations
Here’s another ‘Great Expectations’, about five minutes after the last telly adaptation. What marks out director Mike Newell and writer David Nicholls’s version is its impeccable acting. Helena Bonham Carter has taken some stick for her eccentric Miss Havisham, but she’s spot-on: rather than do witchy (and let’s face it, the temptation to go a bit Bellatrix Lestrange must have been huge), she makes Miss Havisham a spoilt little rich girl frozen in time. All these years since she was jilted, she’s still in her wedding dress and still the petulant princess – now spitefully plotting revenge on men with Estella (Holliday Grainger) as her weapon. The film zeroes in on the love story between Estella and blacksmith’s boy Pip (played by handsome Jeremy Irvine from ‘War Horse’), an angle oddly muted in many versions. It’s what makes this a worthy addition to the heap of adaptations (none of which can hold a candle to David Lean’s 1946 film) – that, and how movingly it shows young Pip as a young man all at sea without a dad.

By: Cath Clarke


Release details

Rated: 12A
Release date: Friday November 30 2012
Duration: 129 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Mike Newell
Cast: Ralph Fiennes
Helena Bonham Carter
Robbie Coltrane
Jeremy Irvine
Toby Irvine
Jason Flemyng
Sally Hawkins
Ewen Bremner

Average User Rating

1.8 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:0
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:3
  • 2 star:4
  • 1 star:0
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Yes!! I was waiting for years to watch a good movie of the book I used to read a s a kid..I am now 30 yrs old!!

Yes!! I was waiting for years to watch a good movie of the book I used to read a s a kid..I am now 30 yrs old!!

Half decent film, well representation of the novel, all except Estella. I mean, ginger? That character lost me the three stars.

Average movie with generally less-than-good acting, particularly from child actors and Walliams. Fantastical portrayal of eccentricity and insanity by Bonham-Carter and sterling, convincing performance by Fiennes. Average movie with less-than-good performances particularly by child actors and Walliams. Magnificent portrayal of eccentricity and insanity by Bonham-Carter and sterling performance by Fiennes.

Painting by numbers stuff but enjoyed. Anne covers biggest gripe but must raise the old lovely teeth did we HAVE to have Williams in it? VERY distracting. 6/10

Worthy film. Looked good. Acting very good except silly faux west country accents when the action is in the Kent marshes. Do wish people would get accents a bit more authentic

To be honest I don't really go in for this genre of film but it was preferable to Madagascar 3D! Not seen too many adaptations of GE so open minded about this version really. It was well shot and the acting held up well. It did seem to drag at times, might explain why the audience were quite muted? Overall if you have a couple of hours to spare then this film hits the spot. A classic but not a classic......

Sad waste of great talented stars in a pointless remake waste of licence payers money. Overlong and downright filthy portrayal of Victorian society. How the hell we climbed out of that pit of filth to the (relatively) civilised society we are today puzzles me. I had no expectations with this going in (no pun intended) but quit after an hour as it just failed to impress me one bit sadlu for the great stars present.

Why? Why did the BBC sign up to make a film adaptation only a year after the in depth tv adaption. Agree with some of the reviewers there surely must be other stories to make. Fiennes is excellent and Bonham Carter is good and Flemying shows signs of becoming a fine character actor as the put on Joe Gargery but apart from that the acting is really rather poor. Walliams seems to ham it up even more than Robbie Coltrane, if that is possible, and neither Irvine who seems to have been picked more for looka and hopes to bring in teen girls than his acting ability nor Grainger really convince in their roles. A story filmed much better before and as the reviewer says it doesn't hold a candle to the Lean classic. If you see that with John Mills as Pip and Jean Simmons as Estella then you realise just how average this is, Two stars I am afraid. It looks lovely but that is about it.

Terribly boring and laced with average performances. The fact that it is a fine novel and great story is the only saviour this poor rendition can grasp. HBC is fine, but all else is tepid indeed! See it if you just want to see another adaptation to collect with the others; all of which pale (as the Time Out reviewer states) in comparison with David Lean's 1940's masterpiece.