7.1/10
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102 user 85 critic

Nicholas Nickleby (2002)

Trailer
2:14 | Trailer
A young, compassionate man struggles to save his family and friends from the abusive exploitation of his cold-heartedly grasping uncle.

Director:

Douglas McGrath

Writers:

Charles Dickens (novel), Douglas McGrath (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
4,426 ( 575)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Stella Gonet ... Mrs. Nickleby
Andrew Havill ... Mr. Nickleby
Henry McGrath Henry McGrath ... Child Nicholas Nickleby
Hugh Mitchell ... Boy Nicholas Nickleby
Poppy Rogers Poppy Rogers ... Child Kate Nickleby
Jessie Lou Roberts Jessie Lou Roberts ... Young Kate Nickleby
Charlie Hunnam ... Nicholas Nickleby
Romola Garai ... Kate Nickleby
Tom Courtenay ... Newman Noggs
Christopher Plummer ... Ralph Nickleby
Anne Hathaway ... Madeline Bray
Jim Broadbent ... Mr. Wackford Squeers
Angela Curran Angela Curran ... Parent
Jamie Bell ... Smike
Juliet Stevenson ... Mrs. Squeers
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Storyline

Young Nicholas (Charlie Hunnam) and his family enjoy a comfortable life, until Nicholas' father (Andrew Havill) dies and the family is left penniless. Nicholas, his sister Kate (Romola Garai) and mother (Stella Gonet) venture to London to seek help from their Uncle Ralph (Christopher Plummer), but Ralph's only intentions are to separate the family and exploit them. Nicholas is sent to a school run by the cruel, abusive and horridly entertaining Mr. Wackford Squeers (Jim Broadbent). Eventually, Nicholas runs away with schoolmate Smike (Jamie Bell), and the two set off to reunite the Nickleby family.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Every family needs a hero.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic material involving some violent action and a childbirth scene | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At the request of production designer Eve Stewart, writer and director Douglas McGrath advanced the time from the 1830s to the 1850s, so she could incorporate elements of the Industrial Revolution in her design plans. See more »

Goofs

The movie is set in the early-to-mid-1800s, but characters sing the hymn "God is working His purpose out" which was written in 1894, 24 years after the death of Charles Dickens. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Vincent Crummles: What happens when the light first pierces the dark dampness in which we have waited? We are slapped and cut loose. If we are lucky, someone is there to catch us and persuade us that we are safe. But are we safe? What happens if, too early, we lose a parent? That party on whom we rely for only everything? Why, we are cut loose again and we wonder, even dread whose hands will catch us now? There once lived a man named Nicholas Nickleby...
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Crazy Credits

Thanks to everyone at One Aldwych. See more »

Connections

Version of The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby (1947) See more »

Soundtracks

On Ilkla Moor Baht 'at
(uncredited)
Traditional Yorkshire folk song; sung to the Methodist hymnal tune "Cranbrook" (1805) (uncredited), written by 'Thomas Clark'
Performed by Kevin McKidd (uncredited), Helen Coker (uncredited), and Jim Broadbent (uncredited)
Sung by John Browdie and Tilda while on their honeymoon in a London public house, accompanied by Mr. Wackford Squeers
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User Reviews

England is lovingly represented in this film by a cinematography wedded to landscape.
8 January 2003 | by jdesandoSee all my reviews

If Dickens were with us today, he would delight in the stock shenanigans of Michael Milken and the outrageous dysfunction of the Osbourne family. Speculation and family chaos rule his `Nicholas Nickleby,' directed on film by Douglas McGrath (`Emma') and starring Christopher Plummer as cold Uncle Ralph and Jim Broadbent as cruel Wackford Squeers.

The idyllic thatched cottage in Devonshire with its white smoke pluming to heaven contrasts sharply with the dark satanic mills of London spewing black smoke into every home and hovel. The eponymous hero, played by Brit TV star Charlie Hunnam, travels both worlds to defend the honor of his sister, overcome the tyranny of his uncle (Plummer), and find love. Along the way Broadbent's boarding-school proprietor, reflecting the workhouse slavery of 19th century England, helps his uncle sabotage Nickleby's spirit and endanger his best friend. But Nicholas also meets the delightful Cheeryble brothers, one of whom is Mike Leigh regular Timothy Spall in an uncharacteristically cheery role.

England is lovingly represented in this film by a cinematography wedded to landscape like a Constable painting, gentlemen appearing as stately as in a Reynolds, and women appearing to be sitting for Gainesboro. All seems well represented without being overdone or obvious.

Like a good Dickens novel, the filmed `Nicholas Nickleby' can't help but drive home lessons about honesty and family. Reliance on both will bring happiness. My only question is how did the Golden Globes ever nominate this as a comedy?


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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 June 2003 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Nicholas Nickleby See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$42,864, 29 December 2002

Gross USA:

$1,587,173

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$3,651,462
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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