Great Expectations

January 30, 1998 0 By Fans
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Garcelle Beauvais at event of Great ExpectationsLiv Tyler at event of Great ExpectationsVanessa Angel at event of Great ExpectationsHarry Hamlin and Lisa Rinna at event of Great ExpectationsHelen Hunt at event of Great ExpectationsGreat Expectations


Modernization of Charles Dickens classic story finds the hapless Finn as a painter in New York pursuing his unrequited and haughty childhood love.

Release Year: 1998

Rating: 6.6/10 (26,739 voted)

Critic's Score: 55/100

Alfonso Cuarón

Stars: Ethan Hawke, Gwyneth Paltrow, Hank Azaria

Based on Charles Dickens' timeless tale, this is a story of the love of a man for an unreachable woman. Updated to modern day New York City, the story concerns a man of modest background who falls in love with a rich girl. But when a mysterious benefactor greenlights the man to make his dreams come true, everything done has the ultimate goal of making Estella fall in love with him…

Writers: Charles Dickens, Mitch Glazer


Ethan Hawke

Finnegan Bell

Gwyneth Paltrow


Hank Azaria

Walter Plane

Chris Cooper


Anne Bancroft

Ms. Dinsmoor

Robert De Niro


Josh Mostel

Jerry Ragno

Kim Dickens


Nell Campbell

Erica Thrall

Gabriel Mann


(as Gabriel Mick)

Jeremy James Kissner

Finnegan at Age 10

Raquel Beaudene

Estella at Age 10

Stephen Spinella

Carter Macleish

Marla Sucharetza

Ruth Shepard

Isabelle Anderson

Lois Pope

Let desire be your destiny.


Official Website:
Official site |

Release Date: 30 January 1998

Filming Locations: Astor Place, Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA

Opening Weekend: $9,593,290
(1 February 1998)
(1867 Screens)

Gross: $26,333,044
(29 March 1998)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?


In his book, "What Just Happened?", producer Art Linson reveals that the narration in the movie was written by David Mamet. It was done for free, on the condition that nobody ever find out he did it.


Revealing mistakes:
During the beginning sequence where the young Finn is splashing through the shallow water, drawing in his notebook, you can see indentations in the page indicating where the creatures eye is to be drawn


The night all of my dreams came true, and like all happy endings,It was a tragedy, Of my device, for I succeeded. I had cut myself loose from Joe, from the past, from the gulf, from poverty I had invented myself. I'd done it cruelly, but I had done it. I was free!

User Review


Rating: 10/10

I have never read Dickens' "Great Expectations," but I can tell you
that this is one of the best movies I have ever seen. Let me clear
something up right away. This is not a b-movie, a cheesy remake, or even a
remake. It is my understanding that this movie is loosely based on the
Dickens' book, but that it does follow the themes, just not the exact story.
This is a great movie, it is a modern classic.

The acting is excellent. Ethan Hawk is amazing, he really is a top
notch actor. He's not just a young sexy leading man type who gets by on
looks and a touch of acting (as I had previously thought since he looks like
the typical Matt Dillion or a Lowe type). Gwyneth Paltrow is absolutely
stunning and plays her role perfectly. De Niro has a nice, powerful role,
and duh, he's awesome in this movie. Anne Bancroft was hauntingly superb in
this movie, you'll see what i mean. Hank Azaria and Chris Cooper play great
supporting roles. I think this movie was probably Chris Cooper's
breakthrough role, and he was great.

The movie was breathtakingly shot. The cinematography was better then
even the recent crouching tiger hidden dragon. The movie gives you a
feeling of awe and mystery because of it's settings. It's a work of

The writing…based on a classic Dickens novel..come on it is superb.
No cheesy lines; yes there are heartfelt beautiful lines, but none cheesy or
over-emotional or over the top dialogue. The writing and actors clicked
Need I say the story was both interesting and intriguing (based on
Dickens' Great Expectations). It may be loosely based or not, but it was

The directing pulled everything together and added some nice tricks to
make this movie a Modern classic. And the way music was used to intensify
this movie and when and where it was used was absolutely brilliant, and i
suppose this is the director's job, WELL DONE.

The music was almost as important as the acting in this movie. The
musical score for this movie is one of the best I have ever encountered. It
makes this movie move you. And just as good are the music (songs) the movie
uses, how and when they are used. This is one of the few movies that
thrives on sound (music) to help create it's mood, power and emotion and it
is done masterfully.

This movie is a masterpiece. Beautiful on the eyes, ears, heart, and
mind. I feel sorry for you if you don't ever get to experience this movie,
it is a MUST see.