David Copperfield (The Personal History, Adventures, Experience, & Observation of David Copperfield the Younger) (1935)

David Copperfield (The Personal History, Adventures, Experience, & Observation of David Copperfield the Younger) (1935)





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David Copperfield (The Personal History, Adventures, Experience, & Observation of David Copperfield the Younger) Photos

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David Copperfield was MGM's major Christmas release for its 1934-1935 season and also the first of producer David O. Selznick's major "literary" films for that studio. While a great deal of editing and streamlining was necessary to distill Charles Dickens' massive novel into 133 minutes of screen time, the end result was so successful that only the nittiest of nitpickers complained about the excised characters and events. Freddie Bartholomew plays the young Copperfield, who, after the death of his mother (Elizabeth Allan), is cruelly mistreated by his stepfather, Mr. Murdstone (Basil Rathbone). David's life brightens when he meets the ever-in-debt Mr. Micawber (W.C. Fields), and he is sheltered by Micawber's large and loving family until Micawber is carted off to debtor's prison. Forced once more to seek a home, David makes his way to the Dover estate of his Aunt Betsey (Edna May Oliver), where he meets another colorful cast of characters, none more so than the childlike Mr. Dick (Lennox Pawle). When Murdstone arrives, insisting that David be returned to him, Aunt Betsey and Mr. Dick form a united front to protect the boy. Flash-forward several years: the grown David (now played by Frank Lawton) is attending school, where he meets the lovely Agnes Wickfield (Madge Evans). David discovers that Agnes' businessman father (Lewis Stone) is under the thumb of the "'umble" prevaricator Uriah Heep (Roland Young) and the equally disreputable Steerforth (Hugh Williams). With the help of Mr. Micawber-who in a weak moment has taken a job working side-by-side with Heep-David proves Heep's treachery and rescues the Wickfields. By rights, he should marry Agnes, but David impulsively weds the empty-headed Dora (Maureen O'Sullivan). Only after Dora's death does David come to his senses, realizing that Agnes is the true love of his life. Originally, Charles Laughton was slated to play Micawber, but he pulled out of the production, worried that he wouldn't be funny enough. The casting of W.C. Fields was an inspired choice: although he injects his own established screen personality at every opportunity, Fields was born to play Micawber. Likewise, second-billed Lionel Barrymore fits his portrayal of crusty old Dan Peggoty like a glove. In fact, there isn't a false bit of casting in the whole production, and this, as much as Selznick's sumptuous production values, is the key to David Copperfield's enormous success.
Action & Adventure , Classics , Drama , Romance
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Freddie Bartholomew
as Young David Copperfield
Frank Lawton
as David Copperfield (older)
W.C. Fields
as Mr. Wilkins Micawber
Lionel Barrymore
as Dan Peggotty
Edna May Oliver
as Aunt Betsey Trotwood
Elizabeth Allan
as Mrs. Clara Copperfield/Mrs. Murdstone
Harry Beresford
as Dr. Chillip
Hugh Walpole
as The Vicar
Basil Rathbone
as Mr. Edward Murdstone
Madge Evans
as Agnes Wickfield (older)
Lewis Stone
as Mr. Wickfield
Roland Young
as Uriah Heep
Elsa Lanchester
as Clickett
Jean Cadell
as Mrs. Micawber
Jessie Ralph
as Nurse Peggotty
Lennox Pawle
as Mr. Dick
Violet Kemble Cooper
as Jane Murdstone
Una O'Connor
as Mrs. Gummidge
Hugh Williams
as Steerforth
Ivan Simpson
as Limmiter
Fay Chaldecott
as Little Emily as Child
Marilyn Knowlden
as Agnes as Child
Florine McKinney
as Little Emily as Woman
Mabel Colcord
as Mary Ann
Renée Gadd
as Janet
Arthur Treacher
as Dishonest Coachman
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Critic Reviews for David Copperfield (The Personal History, Adventures, Experience, & Observation of David Copperfield the Younger)

All Critics (2)

The screen bulges from the pleasure of Dickens

Full Review… | November 22, 2015

George Cukor's oscar-nominated screen version of the Dickens classic novel is lavishly mounted and extremely well acted by W. C. Fields and the rest of the cast

Full Review… | March 4, 2011

Audience Reviews for David Copperfield (The Personal History, Adventures, Experience, & Observation of David Copperfield the Younger)

[font=Arial][size=3][size=5]David Copperfield (Cukor, 1935)[/size] [img]http://posteropolis.com/00davidcopperfieldrrhs.jpg[/img] T-Meter N/A My Rating [img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/smilies/fresh.gif[/img]8/10 [/size][/font][font=Arial][size=3]Whether he's annoyed with his obnoxious son Norman in the hilarious [i]It's A Gift[/i], or with his daughter, Elsie Mae, in [i]The Bank Dick[/i], WC Fields has always entertained me with his slow drawl of a voice. [/size][/font][font=Arial][size=3]Every syllable that comes out of his mouth is hilarious, charming, and authentic. How it can instantly go from low to high, and then back to low has always been a treat to watch. George Cukor's[i] David Copperfield[/i] is no exception. [/size][/font][font=Arial][size=3]In this case, Fields'character, Wilkins Micawber, becomes the first person to ever show David Copperfield kindness. He takes David right into his house after the little boy has walked the 75 mile trip from London to Dover. Though Micawber is a flawed man (he's in and out of prison), he has a good heart and he treats David well.. I know that sounds cliche, and it is, but cliches don't bother me as long they are sincere. The rest of this excellent 1935 movie chronicles the Charles Dickens classic novel pretty well (at least according to my father, I have yet to read it) by bringing to life the grimy streets of England and it's nasty citizens (kind of like Oliver Twist, which I have read). [/size][/font][font=Arial][size=3] [/size][/font] [font=Arial][size=5]In Which We Serve (Coward and Lean, 1942)[/size][/font] [font=Arial][size=3][img]http://i.cnn.net/v5cache/TCM/Images/Dynamic/i38/InWhichWeServe_FF_300x225_011820061023.gif[/img] T-Meter N/A My Rating [img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/smilies/fresh.gif[/img]8/10 [/size][/font][font=Arial][size=3] Noel Coward won a special Academy Award for co-directing, producing, writing, and starring in this simple, underrated, gritty war film about the lives of several sailors on a British vessel in World War II. The film starts out with the words "This is the story of a ship" It turns from a semi-documentary about all of Britan banning together tohelp build this ship into a serious drama that chronices the backgrounds of those seaman that are hanging on for dear life on a raft after their ship has gone down. It's a really good movie that stars Noel Coward, Celia Johnson ([i]Brief Encouter[/i], [i]This Happy Breed[/i]) and John Mills ([i]Great Expectations[/i], [i]Ryan's Daughter[/i]). This was also David Lean's first directing efffort. [size=4]Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle (Leiner, 2004)[/size] [img]http://us.movies1.yimg.com/movies.yahoo.com/images/hv/photo/movie_pix/new_line_cinema/harold___kumar_go_to_white_castle/_group_photos/john_cho4.jpg[/img] T-Meter [img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/smilies/fresh.gif[/img]71% My Rating [img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/smilies/fresh.gif[/img]8/10 [/size][/font][left][font=Arial][size=3]I usually like dumb comedies, but I was really apprehensive about this one. It looked a little too dumb, but then I watched it, and fortunately, I was really surprised. Harold & Kumar's long and winding journey to White Castle heavily reminded me of one of my all-time favorite comedies, Stanley Kramer's epic, star-studded [i]It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World[/i]. In MMMMW, the 15 different people are chasing after a crapload of money, but in Harold & Kumar, they just want to get to White Castle because they have the munchies. Either way, [/size][/font][font=Arial][size=3]both sets of people have a distinct goal in mind, and they are going to achieve it come hell or high water.[/size][/font][font=Arial][size=3] Whether it involves getting locked into prison, having your car stolen by Neil Patrick Harris, or having to ride a cheetah part of the time, you're going to get to White Castle with them whether you like or not. Watching this constant uphill struggle was really charming, funny, and even a little frustrating because of the fact that these two ordinary joes can't attain the simplest of goals. I was rooting them on hard as they go through all their wacky misadventures. My favorite scenes are Kumar's fantasy with the bag of weed, and of course, when they [i]finally [/i]get to White Castle, and they get to devour all those delicious little burgers. There's such a strong feeling of victory and achievement that I shouted out "Yeah, eat that White Castle!" [img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/smilies/biggrin.gif[/img] [/size][/font][font=Arial][size=3]Harold & Kumar is a really good, low-brow comedy that you can just kick back and watch whenever you're bored or feeling down about something. [/size][/font][font=Arial][size=3]This is certainly one of the best comedies to come along in a while.[/size][/font][font=Arial][size=3] I can't even imagine how much funnier it would be if I ever got stoned and watched it. [/size][/font][/left]

Bryce Duncan
Bryce Duncan

The first think i kept noticing was the many of short scenes that I'm not sure what the point of was. There is a great scene with fast cutting (especially for the time) to show the pressure of a math lesson. I really related to David, I remember those school days. Basil Rathbone who plays the title character has some of the best diction I have ever heard.He gives a great performance for a child, he has many emotional challenging scenes. Lots of great characters that are unique and memorable. You get the feeling that's there a lot if story from the book they want to fit into a short film like many movies based on novels hut only slightly. There's no overarching conflict in the story just several small stories about david and the people in his life, heavy on story light on plot.

Alex Wolf Rkc
Alex Wolf Rkc

Not a bad flix, looks great. I never knew Dickens wrote a story where a orphan boy meets nothing but good people.

cody franklin
cody franklin

Super Reviewer

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