Behind Polanski's "Oliver Twist"
Prague and its people had, on Saturday, enjoyed the first debut of Roman Polanski's "Oliver Twist." The film, which screenwriter is Ronald Harwood, tells about a young orphan boy who gets involved with a gang of pickpockets in 19th Century London. Orphaned at an early age, Oliver Twist is forced to live in a workhouse lorded over by the awful Mr.Bumble, who cheats the boys of their meager rations. Desperate yet determined, Oliver makes his escaped to the streets of London. Penniless and alone, he is lured into a world of crime by the sinister Fagin - the mastermind of a gang of pint-sized pickpockets. Oliver's rescue by the kindly Mr. Brownlow is only the beginning of a series of adventures that lead him to the promise of a better life.
Speaking about the film, Polanski said he chose the classic novel to adapt because he admires 19th-century English literature and wanted to make a movie his children would enjoy. Further he revealed he appreciated 19th-century authors' fascination "with banal elements that influence our destiny," specifically mentioning Thomas Hardy and 'Oliver Twist' author Charles Dickens.
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