Great Expectations

Great Expectations

Mike Newell (2012)

12A Certificate


Our Score
Ralph Fiennes (as escaped prisoner Magwitch) and Helena Bonham Carter (as bitter old spinster Miss Havisham) provide the high spots in this grim and cheerless adaptation of the Charles Dickens classic. Each has a hand in shaping the future of orphan Pip, who's beaten by his sister (Sally Hawkins) and only has her kindly but ineffectual husband (Jason Flemyng) to look up to. But Pip (played as a grown-up by War Horse's Jeremy Irvine) is given the chance to better himself after a trust fund is opened in his name by a mysterious benefactor. He is also able to present himself to Estella (Holliday Grainger), Miss Havisham's ward, who has always kept him at a distance. But Irvine plays Pip as all innocence, and so his scenes with Grainger have no pulse. Director Mike Newell drains every bit of colour to affect an ominous mood, but this also drains the movie's life, making the dark obsession at the heart of the story fall flat. And all final hopes and expectations are dashed by a bungled ending.


A penniless orphan is chosen by a reclusive spinster to be a playmate for her cold-hearted ward, whom he falls in love with. As he grows up, a mysterious benefactor offers him the chance to rise into high society, but dark secrets lie behind both the object of his adoration and his newfound fortune. Period drama based on Charles Dickens' novel, starring Jeremy Irvine, Helena Bonham Carter, Ralph Fiennes and Holliday Grainger.

Cast & Crew

Pip Jeremy Irvine
Miss Havisham Helena Bonham Carter
Magwitch Ralph Fiennes
Jaggers Robbie Coltrane
Joe Gargery Jason Flemyng
Herbert Pocket Olly Alexander
Estella Holliday Grainger
Uncle Pumblechook David Walliams
Molly Tamzin Outhwaite
Mrs Joe Sally Hawkins
Wemmick Ewen Bremner
Young Pip Toby Irvine
Young Estella Helena Barlow
Director Mike Newell
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Lionsgate UKGuidance: Some violence, brief swearing.Available on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 30 Nov 2012