Great Expectations


Great Expectations

Critics Consensus

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Total Count: 27


Audience Score

User Ratings: 9,170
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Movie Info

After an anonymous patron provides him with an income, orphaned Pip sets out for the life of a young gentleman. But soon a criminal to whom Pip once showed kindness resurfaces, leading to some surprising revelations. Director David Lean has created a moving, well-crafted adaptation of Charles Dickens' classic novel.

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Jean Simmons
as Young Estella
Anthony Wager
as Young Pip
Bernard Miles
as Joe Gargery
Finlay Currie
as Magwitch
Martita Hunt
as Miss Havisham
Ivor Barnard
as Wemmick
Freda Jackson
as Mrs. Gargery
Everley Gregg
as Sarah Pocket
Hay Petrie
as Uncle Pumblechook
Richard George
as The Sergeant
Everly Gregg
as Sarah Pocket
John Burch
as Mr. Wopsle
O.B. Clarence
as Aged Parent
John Forrest
as Pale Young Gentleman
Anne Holland
as A Relation
Gordon Begg
as Night Porter
Edie Martin
as Mrs. Whimple
Walford Hyden
as Dancing Master
Roy Arthur
as Galley Steersman
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Critic Reviews for Great Expectations

All Critics (27) | Top Critics (6)

Audience Reviews for Great Expectations

  • Jul 25, 2018
    Underneath the action of Dickens tale, with wonderful direction and heartfelt acting (particularly by the ladies!), is a poignant illustration of the longing for class and status as a necessary means of survival, a way to forbear the ills and evils of the world. By the reckoning of the film, poverty is the worst that the world has to offer. A luminous work.
    Kevin M. W Super Reviewer
  • Apr 22, 2016
    There have been at least half a dozen adaptations of Charles Dicken's novel "Great Expectations" over the course of film history and David Lean's 1946 adaptation stands above them as the best. Lean's film isn't just the best adaptation of a Dickens novel, but one of the greatest films ever. The cinematography by Guy Green is absolutely gorgeous with scenes of beautiful landscapes as the sun sets and characters silhouetted over the fading sun. The set decorations of Miss Havisham's (Martita Hunt) room she won't leave are creepy and beautiful at the same time. Scenes play out as you remember Dickens writing them. There's a nice pace to this story and never once does Lean's film linger or stutter. Pip is played by John Mills as an adult when he is supposed to be in his early twenties, he was well into his late thirties at the time of filming. Mills looks old, but despite that, he displays the naiveté and gullibleness expected of the character on his journey to becoming a gentleman.
    Joseph B Super Reviewer
  • Oct 02, 2013
    Not my favourite Lean film. I still think that a great Great Expectations is yet to come. It's a great tale that eludes a good telling from a cinematic point of view. Despite the all star cast here, it doesn't quite meet with the expectations of the written form.
    John B Super Reviewer
  • Jan 09, 2011
    Not the masterpiece David Lean's Oliver Twist is, but still a flawless adaptation from novel by Charles Dickens with stunning cinematic landscapes and deft direction, and a terrific cast. 97/100
    Simeon D Super Reviewer

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