Danny DeVito (1996)

PG Certificate


Our Score
Director Danny DeVito revels in the black comedy of this typically dark Roald Dahl story, in which monstrous adults consider children as inconvenient accessories as they devote themselves to their own pleasures. DeVito - who also stars as Matilda's boorish dad - cleverly emphasises the point by shooting much of the film from a child's-eye view, making people and buildings alike look forbidding and cold. Miracle on 34th Street's Mara Wilson is excellent in the lead, while Embeth Davidtz prevents beloved teacher Miss Honey from being too sickly sweet. Stealing the acting honours, however, is Pam Ferris, who brings vicious headmistress Miss Trunchbull to terrifying life. The result is classic entertainment for children.


A gifted youngster is packed off by her selfish parents to the prison-like Crunchem Hall School. Once there, she befriends a sweet-natured teacher who convinces her that not all grown-ups are bad - and urges her to use her special powers to turn the tables on the nasty headmistress. Fantasy comedy, adapted from the children's book by Roald Dahl, with Mara Wilson, Pam Ferris, Embeth Davidtz, Rhea Perlman and Danny DeVito, who also directed.

Cast & Crew

Matilda Mara Wilson
Harry Wormwood Danny DeVito
Zinnia Wormwood Rhea Perlman
Miss Honey Embeth Davidtz
Agatha Trunchbull Pam Ferris
FBI agent Paul Reubens
FBI agent Tracey Walter
Michael Brian Levinson
Director Danny DeVito
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourAvailable on: video, DVD and Blu-ray
Comedy Drama Children's