Great Expectations - The Book Verses the Movie

Great Expectations: The Book Verses the Movie

Charles Dickens wrote many famous works, including Great Expectations. Recently, a movie loosely based upon this book was directed by Alfonso Cuaron and starred Gweynth Paltrow and Ethan Hawke.

Great Expectations is a sensual tale of a young man's unforgettable passage into manhood, and the three individuals who will undeniably change his life forever. Through the surprising interactions of these vivid characters, this timeless story takes a unique and contemporary look at life's great coincidences. (Movieweb)

In the book Great Expectations by Charles Dickens, a boy named Philip Pirrip (called Pip) was an orphan, raised by his sister who was twenty years older than he was. He was a very kind and sensitive character. His sister, Mrs. Georgiana Maria Gargery (called Mrs. Joe), was " not a good looking woman" (Dickens) and was very abusive towards Pip and Joe Gargery, the husband of Mrs. Joe. Joe was the Village Blacksmith and was very fond of Pip.

The story begins with Pip at a graveyard visiting the tombstones of the parents he has never met when suddenly a convict, later identified as Abel Magwitch, threatens to kill Pip if he doesn't bring him a file and wittles (food) the next morning. Pip did steal what the convict wanted, with much fear of his sister, and brought it to the convict the next morning, but found a different convict who ran away, soon after, he found Abel. Subsequently that afternoon, the convicts were captured. Later on, Joe's uncle Pumblechook introduced the boy to Miss Havisham, an eccentric lady, who would have Pip come over to play cards with her daughter Estella. Estella was later found as the daughter of Abel Magwitch and Molly, a woman who stood trail for a murder she did not commit and was acquitted of. Molly thought it would be in Estella's best interest to have Mrs. Havisham adopt her when she was born because she didn't feel she could provide for her as Miss Havisham could. Estella was very beautiful and brought up to break men's hearts while remaining supercilious. She made Pip feel as if for her to approve of him he had to become a gentleman and try to cover up his 'common' background obviously never knowing of her common background of a housekeeper mother and a convict father.

Miss Havisham would have Estella and Pip play cards to entertain her and would often make comments about how pretty Estella was. In Satis House, the name of Miss Havisham's home, Pip met Mr. Jaggers. He was a pale young lawyer that was a gentleman, unlike Pip, and was one of Miss Havisham's many connections.

At about the time Pip fought a pale young gentleman, he was at an inn where the bartender stirred Pips drink with the file that he gave the convict and was given a gift of money.

When Pip was old enough, Miss Havisham paid for Pip to be Joe's apprentice, which Pip did not want to do because he still yearned to be considered Estella's equal intellectually. During his apprenticeship Mrs. Joe was attacked by Orlick and became paralyzed. Biddy was then hired to take care over all of the duties that Mrs. Joe once took care of. Pip never finished his apprenticeship because one day Mr. Jaggers informed Pip that an unknown benefactor had made arrangements to provide him with the education of a gentleman, of which he desired so badly because of Estella. Pip automatically assumed that the unknown benefactor was Miss Havisham, but it is later found that his benefactor is actually the convict that he helped that unforgettable day in the graveyard.

Pip pursued his education in London with Mr. Matthew Pocket, a relative of Miss Havisham. While there he became a very close friend to Matthew's son, Herbert, who was the pale young gentleman that he fought back at Satis House and also resided with Pip at Barnard's Inn. While Pip was in London, Mrs. Joe died and Pip began to neglect Joe and Biddy. Even when he went to Mrs. Joe's funeral he acted in a condescending manor towards Biddy and Joe.

The entire time Pip was in London, he continued to neglect Biddy and Joe as he began to pick up extravagant habits that were the total opposite of his background, which led him