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Festivale online magazine, March, 1998
Great Expectations movie review
Great Expectations

Charles Dickens' novel has been given the Hollywood treatment with a Mexican director who loves the colour green.

The new Great Expectations is beautifully photographed, especially the gorgeous decay of Miss Dinsmore's frustrated wedding banquet, an al fresco garden ruin outside an echoing wasting mansion.

Pip is now Finn, a reference to his fisherman brother-in-law/father and his seafaring childhood. He is introduced to the cold mistress of his heart by an over-painted, unstable elderly woman spurned on her wedding day. His ruin is her revenge on all men. Dickens is famous for his social commentary and biting observation, this script and the lead actors lack the witty edge and insight of the original.

Movie poster, Great Expectations, festivale movie review; expect2.jpg - 25976 Bytes

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graphic, Great Expectations, festivale movie review; expect1.jpg - 19280 Bytes This production is beautifully staged and lushly presented, badly marred by a gratuitous crotch shot that suggests the director was more interested to photographing a woman's body than telling the story of flawed human beings.

This film breaks the cardinal laws of film-making, its characters need to speak their motivations, and explain their emotions, explicitly, and when a film maker needs to take such drastic steps to explain the story, then the film falls.

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Just the facts:

Title: Great Expectations (1997)
Written by: Based on novel by Charles Dickens; Screenplay by Mitch Glazer
Directed by: Alfonso Cuaron
Produced by: Art Linson, Deborah Lee, John Linson
Edited by: Steven Weisberg
Director of Photography: Emmanuel Lubezki

The Players: Ethan Hawke, Gwyneth Paltrow, Hank Azaria, Anne Bancroft, Robert De Niro, Nell Campbell
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Festivale Online Magazine
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ISSN 1328-8008
Published in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
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: Published in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia : copyright © Festivale 1999 All rights reserved
Filed: 6-Mar-1998 : Last updated: 1-Apr-1998 : Last tested: 3-Jul-2014: Last Compiled: 3-Jul-2014
Entire site refreshed: Dec 2008-Feb 2009 | Site URL transferred: Jan 2005 (previously www.festivale.webcentral.com.au)

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