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I. E. Chadwick
Directed by : William J. Cowen
Starring : Dickie Moore.... Oliver Twist
Irving Pichel.... Fagin
William 'Stage' Boyd.html.... Bill Sikes
Doris Lloyd.... Nancy Sikes
Writing credits : Elizabeth Meehan (screenplay)
Black & White
Born in New York on December 21, 1886, William J. Cowen was a highly decorated military personage before he turned to writing and film direction. He penned some immensely successful scripts such as Good Girl Go to Paris (1939) and Blind Alibi (1938). It is probably because of his own acquaintance with hardship that he was able to give his classic 1933 feature film Oliver Twist such compassionate and insightful treatment. His other notable directorial offerings include Woman Unafraid (1934), The Big Beat 1958) and Kongo (1932). He died in England on January 16, 1964.
THE PLOT : The infant Oliver Twists mother dies in a workhouse at childbirth, and the chambermaid steals her wedding ring on discovering her corpse. His leads the doctor to presume that she was a tramp; thereby sealing the course the boys life is to take. Oliver (Dickie Moore) is adopted by the long-winded orphanage keeper Bumble (Lionel Belmore) and taken to the local workhouse when he is nine. Subjected to starvation, backbreaking work and a bunch of cruel, pompous authority figures, he makes a break for it and heads for London. He is picked up by the shady Artful Dodger (Sonny Ray) and taken to the establishment of Fagin (Irving Pichel) - a school for pickpockets. His training soon begins under the auspices of the Artful Dodger and Charley Bates (George Nash) , but he is nabbed on his very first venture. As Fate would have it, his victim is the rich, compassionate Mr. Brownlow (Alec B. Francis) who takes him under his wing, but Oliver is recaptured by Fagins men while on an errand for Mr. Brownlow. However, Nancy Sikes (Doris Lloyd) from Fagins fold reports the entire matter to Mr. Brownlows lovely niece Rose Maylie (Barbara Kent) and establishes contact with them. In the meanwhile, Oliver is being shanghaied into some serious criminal activities by Nancys unscrupulous, drunken husband Bill Sikes (W.M. Boyd) . The courageous young boys future seems sealed - but Providence works in mysterious ways...
Can a penniless nine-year-old prevail against the collective forces of a ruthlessly opportunistic society, to emerge with true friends...and with dignity? With his incomparable storytelling skills, Charles Dickens tells a tale of ageless appeal.
EDITORIAL REVIEW : From his birth in an English workhouse, the course of Oliver Twists life is being dictated by greedy, overbearing people. His mother dies at childbirth and young Oliver finds himself scrubbing floors in yet another workhouse. But Fate has other plans for the plucky lad. He runs away to London to find a new life, only to be coaxed into joining Fagins den of thieves, to be trained as a pickpocket by the twitchy Artful Dodger.
In quick succession, Oliver then lands up under the care of compassionate nobleman Mr. Brownlow and back amongst Fagins motley gang of delinquents. The boy may be out of luck, but hes got three priceless assets - his innocence, resilience and indomitable spirit.
As with many of Charles Dickens memorable novels (for instance David Copperfield) , the story of Oliver Twist is more than a little autobiographic and reflects the authors own recollections of an incredibly tough and deprived childhood in England.
"I guess most of us have read some version or the other of Oliver Twist in high school - but that wont prepare you for the raw pathos and display of courage in this fascinating feature film (Oliver Twist) from A2ZCDS. Dickie Moore brings the key character to breathing, bleeding life and I couldnt stop myself from hating his antagonists. This vintage movie is totally enchanting. I will not forget it."
Customer's Name : Brendan E. McAuliffe (South Portland, Maine)
"Shed a tear for true hardship, folks. Oliver Twist is a story of endless courage without the loss of innocence - an incredibly rare combination that young Dickie Moore managed to portray like a true virtuoso. My heart went out to that boy throughout. If youve read Charles Dickens classic book, this feature film will be an even greater treat."
Customer's Name : Evelyn Trenton (Lorain, Ohio)
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Given that some of these videos are extremely old and their original audio quality is not very good, we have tried to improve it to the best possible quality. However, due to their inherent quality problems, you might still have a few instances where the audio is of a slightly lower volume.