Great Expectations 1947

Great Expectations

Critics Consensus

Furnished with striking visual detail and told with great narrative economy by director David Lean, Great Expectations is an exemplary adaptation of Charles Dickens' dense and episodic novel.

100%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 28

88%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 9,200

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Movie Info

In this Dickens adaptation, orphan Pip (John Mills) discovers through lawyer Mr. Jaggers (Francis L. Sullivan) that a mysterious benefactor wishes to ensure that he becomes a gentleman. Reunited with his childhood patron, Miss Havisham (Martita Hunt), and his first love, the beautiful but emotionally cold Estella (Valerie Hobson), he discovers that the elderly spinster has gone mad from having been left at the altar as a young woman, and has made her charge into a warped, unfeeling heartbreaker.

Cast & Crew

Bernard Miles
Joe Gargery
Finlay Currie
Abel Magwitch
Martita Hunt
Miss Havisham
Tony Wager
Young Pip
Alec Guinness
Herbert Pocket
Ivor Barnard
Mr. Wemmick
David Lean
Writer (Screenplay)
Ronald Neame
Writer (Screenplay)
Anthony Havelock-Allan
Writer (Screenplay)
Guy Green
Cinematographer
Jack Harris
Editor
Walter Goehr
Music
Show all Cast & Crew

Critic Reviews for Great Expectations

All Critics (28) | Top Critics (7) | Fresh (28)

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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