Oliver Twist | 1948 | Alec Guinness, Robert Newton

The best version of Dickens’s classic ever put on film (not counting Carol Reed’s joyous musical version), in which David Lean once again proves his brilliance at putting the author on screen. Here, John Howard Davies is the cherubic orphan who runs away from the workhouse after mistakenly asking for seconds at dinner time, falls in with Fagin (a show stoppingly evil turn from Alec Guinness) and his gang of junior thieves, and eventually gets adopted by rich folk, although more troubles await him in the shape of violent thug Bill Sikes. If only all literature adaptations were this good.

John Howard Davies as Oliver Twist
Robert Newton as Bill Sikes
Alec Guinness as Fagin
Kay Walsh as Nancy
Francis L. Sullivan as Mr. Bumble
Henry Stephenson as Mr. Brownlow
Mary Clare as Mrs. Corney
Anthony Newley as Artful Dodger
Ralph Truman as Monks
Michael Dear as Noah Claypole
Diana Dors as Charlotte
Josephine Stuart as Oliver’s Mother
Kathleen Harrison as Mrs Sowerberry
Gibb McLaughlin as Mr. Sowerberry
Amy Veness as Mrs. Bedwin
Frederick Lloyd as Mr. Grimwig
Henry Edwards as Police Official
Ivor Barnard as Chairman of the Board
Maurice Denham as Chief of Police
Michael Ripper as Barney
Peter Bull as Landlord of ‘Three Cripples’
Deidre Doyle as Mrs. Thingummy
Kenneth Downey as Workhouse Master (as Kenneth Downy)
W.G. Fay as Bookseller
Edie Martin as Annie
Fay Middleton as Martha
Graveley Edwards as Mr. Fang
John Potter as Charlie Bates
Maurice Jones as Workhouse Doctor
Hattie Jacques as Singer at ‘Three Cripples’
Betty Paul as Singer at ‘Three Cripples’

Director: David Lean
Script: Stanley Haynes, David Lean
Novel: Charles Dickens

UK | 116 minutes | 1948


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