Little Dorrit (1987)


“Welcome to the Marshalsea, Sir. I have welcomed many gentlemen to these walls, please sit down Mr. Clennam. My daughter Amy may have mentioned that I am the father of this place. You” excuse the primitive customs to which we are reduced here.” – William Dorrit

Number of Times Seen – 1 (25 Nov 2018)

Brief Synopsis – Upon returning from work in the far East for over twenty years, a young man tries to find a way to right a wrong that was committed years earlier.

My Take on it – I am usually not afraid of watching long movies, but the idea of watching a 6 hours period piece originally written by Charles Dickens is quite a daunting task to deal with.

I have heard about this film for years but never has the chance (or courage) to try and tackle such a subject.

In my quest to watch all films with actors nominated for an Oscar for Supporting Actor, I finally broke down and decided to watch this film.

This film is not only long, but t deals with many issues and events that were much more prevalent hundreds of years ago than they are now and that makes things a bit harder to fee relatable to a modern audience.

Parts of the story feel a bit drawn out, but they expertly use a great technique here that proves how essential it is that things are presented in a particular way in order to help the viewer understand everything that is truly going on throughout.

I actually loved the way that this film is essentially two stories all about the same events just from varying perspectives.

Films that show varying perspectives have always been among my favorites because they get to show us that the way that one perceives an event all depends on your own perspective and without seeing the whole picture, sometimes important information can be overlooked or not even noticed.

This helps the viewer understand more about what is happening as things move along and allows us to get a much broader perspective on things.

Derek Jacobi is great in the lead despite the fact that is seems as if they are trying too hard to constantly change the age of his character.

Alec Guinness is superb in a small yet essential role that earned him a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination for this performance.

This film was obviously an epic undertaking due to its length and vast cast and they manage to make it quite enjoyable even if it’s a bit exhausting by the end.

Bottom Line – As with many of Dickens’ novels, this one is quite long and the film comes close to running nearly 6 hours. It feels a bit drawn out, but because of the way that the story is told, its actually quite essential in order to understand everything. Love the way that this film is essentially two stories even if they are just different viewpoints of the same events. This actually helps make things much clearer as the story moves along and gives the viewer a better overall perspective of the events portrayed here.  Jacobi is great in the lead even if they try too hard to make him look younger than he really is. Guinness does an excellent job in an integral supporting role and was deservingly nominated for an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for his performance.  Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Up until O.J.: Made in America (2016) with its running-time of 7 hours, this film was the longest film to receive an Oscar nomination. (From IMDB)

Rating – Globe Worthy (8/10)

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3 thoughts on “Little Dorrit (1987)

  1. Pingback: Did They Get it Right? – Best Supporting Actor – Oscars 1988 |

  2. Pingback: MovieRob’s Monthly Roundup – November 2018 |

  3. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1987 |

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