David Lean's version of Charles Dickens's Oliver Twist
is not as enthralling as his GREAT EXPECTATIONS, but it is a fine film in its own right. This time Alec Guinness (EXPECTATIONS was his first film) plays Fagin, Anthony Newley is the Artful Dodger, and the then-unknown and
now-forgotten John Howard Davies is Oliver Twist. (Actually, some may recognize Davies as the British television producer responsible for "Monty Python's Flying Circus" and "Fawlty Towers.") Guinness's performance ran into some trouble from Jewish pressure groups--seven minutes of his performance
was excised--and the film finally entered the country in 1951. Many of the novel's characte...