Oliver Twist - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Oliver Twist Reviews

September 30, 2005
It's noble, high-minded and safe, and I can't help thinking that I would have preferred an audacious but honest failure.
September 30, 2005
Great expectations are unavoidable when Roman Polanski takes on a Charles Dickens classic. Alas, his version of Oliver Twist fails to live up to them.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
September 30, 2005
A grounded and unusually matter-of-fact adaptation.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
September 30, 2005
Poignant and primal, Roman Polanski's splendid adaptation of the Charles Dickens classic pricks the heart and the conscience.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
September 30, 2005
In Oliver Twist, it's the viewer who is punished.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
September 30, 2005
Oliver Twist is a lovely, tony picture, but it isn't exactly essential.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 30, 2005
Nitpickers may squawk over missing elements, but the film doggedly hits on the book's big themes: the power of innocence, the cruelty of class.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
September 30, 2005
Oliver Twist as presented by Roman Polanski is pretty much the same as Oliver Twist presented by anyone else, except perhaps it's a bit duller.
Read More | Original Score: C-
September 30, 2005
As handsomely made, well-acted, dramatically unflinching and heartfelt as it is, Polanski's Oliver is a movie more admirable than emotionally affecting.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
September 30, 2005
Polanski's Oliver proves surprisingly uninspired, taking nearly the entire movie before it belatedly springs to life.
Read More | Original Score: C+
September 30, 2005
Polanski could have made Oliver as haunting as his 2002 Academy Award-winning film, The Pianist. Yet his new effort falls just short.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 30, 2005
The film is worth seeing, but it won't hold a cherished place in your moviegoing memories.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
September 30, 2005
It's as though Polanski had set the story's foolproof motor on cruise control and left the room; the tale is well told but told without personality.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 30, 2005
Technically sound and surprisingly faithful to its source material, Roman Polanski's version of Oliver Twist comes across as uninspired and flat.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 29, 2005
Perhaps it will take a school trip to encourage kids to see Oliver Twist, but that's one permission slip parents should sign.
Read More | Original Score: 4/5
September 29, 2005
Seeing Polanski's version of this most Dickensian of all Charles Dickens' tales, I felt full and wanted no more versions (please, sir!), having now seen the definitive one.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
September 29, 2005
The film is high on production values but short on heart.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 29, 2005
Polanski's Oliver Twist is craftsmanly and relatively unsentimental.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 29, 2005
Polanski's film is visually exact and detailed without being too picturesque.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
September 29, 2005
When was the last time you walked out of a Polanski picture talking mostly about the sets and music?
Read More | Original Score: C
September 26, 2005
Dickens knew that melodrama answers to something permanent in our nature; without it, any version of Oliver Twist draws perilously close to the genteel.
September 26, 2005
The first question I have is, why? Why would Roman Polanski, one of the most innovative directors of the last half-century, want to adapt a story that has been told again and again?
September 23, 2005
This is that rare movie version of a great novel in which watching is reading.
September 23, 2005
Polanski and his Pianist scribe Ronald Harwood have chosen to tell it in as simple a manner as possible, as though they had been given a Masterpiece Theatre assignment to dispatch.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 23, 2005
Polanski's adult fans deserve something more than a film for the kiddies, and Dickens deserves better treatment than merely 'tasteful.'
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 23, 2005
Drab and unfeeling.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
September 23, 2005
Polanski's take will spark debate among Dickens lovers, but audiences won't respond as warmly as they have to Lean's classic.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 23, 2005
Polanski delivers an acceptable yet thoroughly uninspiring twist on the orphaned Oliver, who gets a raw deal every which way.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
September 23, 2005
A work of craft that could be flying the Masterpiece Theatre banner. You know, an earnestly worthy adaptation of a literary classic, as faithful and polished as it is ponderous and unprovocative.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 22, 2005
That Polanski chose this as the movie he wanted to make for his own children feels motivated by more than a septuagenarian dad's desire to take a $60-million stab at a bedtime story. It feels inspired by a need to tell them who he is.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
September 22, 2005
It still stings in unlikely places.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
September 22, 2005
With tact and enthusiasm, Roman Polanski grabs hold of a great book and rediscovers its true and enduring vitality.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
September 22, 2005
A near-masterpiece.
Full Review | Original Score: A
September 22, 2005
Lacking energy and pace and enslaved by a ghastly score, this tepid movie left me longing alternately for David Lean's thrillingly grim 1948 masterpiece, and Carol Reed's chipper 1968 sing-along, with pretty tunes by Lionel Bart.
September 21, 2005
It's irresistible to read his sorrowful and seemingly classical take, from a filmmaker known as much for the schisms in his personal history as for the lurches in his work, as something much more personal and poignant.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
September 20, 2005
The quality of mercy is strained, but by some strange feat it doesn't dissolve entirely.
September 12, 2005
Conventional, straightforward and very much within what used to be called the Traditional of Quality, this handsome film is a respectable literary adaptation but lacks dramatic urgency and intriguing undercurrents.
September 9, 2005
The spark that an original point of view might bring to the oft-told tale is missing.