Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Movie: Great Expectations

My rating on a 1-10 scale: 9
Genre: Classic, life
Primary actors: Ioan Gruffudd, Justine Waddell, Charlotte Rampling
Length: About three hours
Based on: Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
Time period: 1800’s
Year it came out: 1999
My overall opinion: It was pretty good! The costuming was great, and it followed the book well. Overall, it was a good movie and I enjoyed it. I will watch it again! However, I am also eager to see the newest version. Now, on to my “evaluations.”
A couple of the characters…


An good actor. His portrayal didn’t strike me amazingly, but he was good. (Note: very hard to find a picture :P)

Miss Havisham

She was good, very good. I thought she made a stunning Miss Havisham. One thing I noticed that interested me a bit is that she did appear to change her jewelry at least, and maybe her dress, though it was always cream. In the book, Miss Havisham is always wearing her old wedding gown. Other than that, I liked her portrayal.


They had the perfect actor for Estella as a girl. She was snobby, pretty, and perfect for the part. However, using Justine Waddell(who I associate fundamentally with Wives and Daughters) wasn’t a good move for the adult Estella. She was beautiful, but she was way too nice to Pip. Perhaps that made it better for the movie, but I think they should have stuck to the book. Molly (W&D) is meek and sweet, and I think that the actor is sweet too. So she wasn’t right for Estella. The movie-makers could have done better there.

Sweet, big, burly, and gentle – perfect for Joe.

And a few thoughts on key scenes/set-ups…

Miss Havisham’s Wedding Dinner and Dining Room

Amazing. I can’t imagine how much work went into that! There was still too much food for how long it had been though…even I know that that food would have been much more decayed. But it certainly made for a chilling effect! Pretty much wow. :)
Gray, dark, and dirty – just like London was.
Miss Havisham’s Burning Dress
Wow. Just wow. I think Dickens was rather fascinated with people burning…consider the spontaneous combustion in Bleak House. A really cool scene (not as in lovely, but as in amazing), and well done. Just what I’d pictured!
The End
I had wondered how they did this…Dickens really leaves it hanging. So does the movie – in a niceish way, as nice as a hanging end can be. The movie insinuates more about how it ends than Dickens does, but I suppose some of that just comes with SEEING it instead of READING it.

My Final Absolute Overall Opinion of Great Expectations
Good. Very good. If you enjoyed the book, if you didn’t enjoy the book, if you like period dramas…watch this.


Rissi said...

Agree with you: I'd watch this one again but... yeah, much prefer the 2011 or 2012 version. For certain, it's a toss up right now which I'd name as a favorite.

Both have their better points.

Oh... that red dress!? How gorgeous!

Alyianna Baggins said...

Hmm...I may have to check this out! I loved the book - and I want to watch the new 2012/2013 movie so bad, but it doesn't look like it's coming out anytime soon. :(

Charity U said...

Rissi, I need to see those newer version for sure! Someday... :) Love that dress. SO much.

Alyianna, yes, do! I want to see that newer movie as well, but yes -- don't have access right now. :P