Old Curiosity Shop

The Old Curiosity Shop

Director: W.A. Conner, Kevin Connor

Cast: Peter Ustinov, James Fox

     
 

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In this Disney version of Charles Dickens' The Old Curiosity Shop, Nell Trent is well cared for by her kind and gentle grandfather (Peter Ustinov) at his London curiosity shop. She, in turn, looks after him, cooking meals and keeping him company with her angelic smile and loving nature, vowing never to leave him. All is well, or so it seems. But unknown to…  See more details below

Overview

In this Disney version of Charles Dickens' The Old Curiosity Shop, Nell Trent is well cared for by her kind and gentle grandfather (Peter Ustinov) at his London curiosity shop. She, in turn, looks after him, cooking meals and keeping him company with her angelic smile and loving nature, vowing never to leave him. All is well, or so it seems. But unknown to 13-year-old Nell, Grandfather Trent has a dark and dangerous obsession: gambling. Having lost his savings to the spendthrift ways of demanding relatives, he now pins his hopes for financial solvency -- and Nell's future -- on the luck of the draw. Every night, as Nell sleeps safely and soundly, he puts on his top hat, takes his cane in hand, and makes his way through narrow alleyways to a wooden door. After knocking, he enters and sits down to a card game by candlelight. When he leaves hours later, his pockets are empty -- always empty. To pay his gambling debts and stake himself to new games, he borrows heavily from a predatory moneylender, Daniel Quilp (Tom Courtenay). One day, after Quilp discovers what's been happening to the loans, he lays claim to the curiosity shop and takes steps to imprison Grandfather Trent. Nell and the now penniless old man think Nell's best friend, Kit Nubbles (William Mannering), betrayed them to Quilp, which is untrue. To escape the wrath of the vicious Quilp, they run off, going from town to town and meeting an odd and colorful assortment of characters along the way.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Mike Cummings
Although this 1994 made-for-TV drama omits portions of the Dickens classic, it captures the spirit of the novel and its themes: greed, poverty, cruelty, self-destruction, love, loyalty, and redemption. Sally Walsh is engaging as the long-suffering Little Nell, a 13-year-old who never complains as the fortunes of her guardian, a gambling-addicted grandfather, crumble. Her angelic face, with its winsome smile and innocent eyes, can earn the favor of even the most sophisticated viewer. Peter Ustinov, outfitted with top hat and cane, portrays Grandfather Trent with convincing desperation. While preoccupied with the welfare of Nell, he also preoccupies himself with the lure of easy money at the card table. He will do anything for Nell, but he will also rob the meager coins she earns for a chance to wager at a card table. Perhaps the best performance in the film is Tom Courtenay's as the villainous Daniel Quilp, a moneylender who dresses all in black, like a walking nightmare. Courtenay is so wicked, so corrupt that viewers may find themselves cheering when his riverside business catches fire. To director Kevin Connor's credit, the film does not resort to undue sentimentality as innocent Nell endures privation, cruelty, and illness. Although filmed entirely in Ireland, the motion picture has the look and feel of 19th century England -- its manners, its dress, and the sinister underbelly of its corrupt social system. The PG-rated film is suitable for the entire family.

Product Details

Release Date:
06/07/2005
UPC:
0096009328092
Original Release:
1994
Rating:
G
Source:
Echo Bridge
Sound:
[Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround]
Time:
3:08:00
Sales rank:
40,441

Special Features

Digitally mastered; Interactive menus; Chapter selections

Cast & Crew

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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Honest Man [10:13]
2. Prisoner Nell [12:18]
3. Dirty Brute [7:09]
4. Life's Woes [13:58]
5. The Bird Has Flown [13:48]
6. Partners in Everything [10:57]
7. Trusting Soul [11:10]
8. Sweet Old Vulture [13:50]
1. Spilled Milk [12:03]
2. Grandfather's Addiction [11:49]
3. Watchful Eyes [11:50]
4. Desperate Plight [7:16]
5. Missing Man [12:32]
6. Means to an End [11:52]
7. Unkempt Grave [13:34]
8. Flaming Chaos [14:51]

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