Dickens on Film
An exploration of Charles Dickens's contribution to the history of film and television, using archive footage of classic and less familiar adaptations from 1898 to the present day.
From the magical films of the silent era to the celebrated work of director David Lean and high definition television, this documentary revisits films and interviews from the archive to answer the question of why Dickens's novels have inspired so many hundreds of adaptations on screen.
This co-production with Dickens 2012 not only encapsulates the history of Dickens's time, but also of the 100 years in which his work has survived most acutely on screen. It is not only the stories, themes and characters of Dickens's writing that translate so well onto screen - Sergei Eisenstein argued that there is something essentially filmic in his unique prose style; that Dickens's rapid 'cutting' within scenes and from scene to scene coupled with his seamless mixture of the bizarrely comic with the terrifyingly profound was itself proto-cinematic.
Dickens wrote the way a camera saw before film had been invented and he remains to this day the most cinematic of writers.