6.2/10
253
10 user 2 critic

The Beggar's Opera (1953)

When the composer of an opera about a swashbuckling, wenching highwayman meets his hero's real life counterpart he's disappointed with his lack of dash.

Director:

Writers:

(libretto), | 1 more credit »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Carrie (1952)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Carrie boards the train to Chicago with big ambitions. She gets a job stitching shoes and her sister's husband takes almost all of her pay for room and board. Then she injures a finger and ... See full summary »

Director: William Wyler
Stars: Laurence Olivier, Jennifer Jones, Miriam Hopkins
Captain Blood (1935)
Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

After being wrongly convicted as a traitor, Peter Blood, an English physician, is sent to exile in the British colonies of the Caribbean, where he becomes a pirate.

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, Lionel Atwill
Marat/Sade (1967)
Drama | History | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

In an insane asylum, Marquis de Sade directs Jean Paul Marat's last days through a theater play. The actors are the patients.

Director: Peter Brook
Stars: Patrick Magee, Clifford Rose, Glenda Jackson
Comedy | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Two unlikely prospector partners share the same wife in a California gold rush mining town.

Director: Joshua Logan
Stars: Lee Marvin, Clint Eastwood, Jean Seberg
Richard III (1955)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Shakespeare's powerful tale of the wicked deformed king and his conquests, both on the battlefield and in the boudoir.

Director: Laurence Olivier
Stars: Laurence Olivier, Cedric Hardwicke, Nicholas Hannen
Comedy | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Two sisters leave their small seaside town of Rochefort in search of romance. Hired as carnival singers, one falls for an American musician, while the other must search for her ideal partner.

Director: Jacques Demy
Stars: Catherine Deneuve, George Chakiris, Françoise Dorléac
Uncle Vanya (1963)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A retired professor has returned to his estate to live with his beautiful young wife, Yelena. The estate originally belonged to his first wife, now deceased; her mother and brother still ... See full summary »

Director: Stuart Burge
Stars: Michael Redgrave, Robert Lang, Max Adrian
Term of Trial (1962)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Graham Weir is an alcoholic schoolteacher whose criminal record for refusing to fight during the Second World War has prevented him from progressing further in his teaching career. He is ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Glenville
Stars: Laurence Olivier, Simone Signoret, Sarah Miles
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A wealthy and bored woman is witness of a murder in affection and meets another witness. She asks him about the history of the victim and falls in love with him.

Director: Peter Brook
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Jean-Paul Belmondo, Pascale de Boysson
Henry V (1944)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In the midst of the Hundred Years' War, the young King Henry V of England embarks on the conquest of France in 1415.

Director: Laurence Olivier
Stars: Laurence Olivier, Robert Newton, Leslie Banks
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

G.I. Gurdjieff is a spiritual teacher and mystic who, after a lifetime study, developed a form of meditation incorporating modern dance.

Director: Peter Brook
Stars: Dragan Maksimovic, Terence Stamp, Mikica Dimitrijevic
King Lear (1971)
Certificate: GP Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The Shakespeare tragedy that gave us the expression "How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is to have a thankless child." King Lear has not one but two ungrateful children, and it's ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Brook
Stars: Paul Scofield, Irene Worth, Cyril Cusack
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
George Rose ...
1st Turnkey
Stuart Burge ...
1st Prisoner
Cyril Conway ...
2nd Prisoner
Gerald Lawson ...
3rd Prisoner
...
Polly Peachum
George Devine ...
Peachum
Mary Clare ...
Mrs. Peachum
Edward Pryor ...
Filch
...
Mrs. Trapes
...
Mr. Lockit
...
Lucy Lockit
...
Inn Keeper
...
Jenny Diver
Edit

Storyline

Authentic rendering of John Gay's 18th century musical, filmed in Technicolor, about Captain MacHeath, a highwayman, and his love for too many beautiful women. Betrayed by Jenny and Sukey, two of his bygone lovers, and temporarily freed by two others, MacHeath is arrested and condemned to death. While waiting to be hanged, the captain is entertained by a musical beggar, who has written an opera of which the highwayman is the hero. Written by Mike Rogers <MICHAELPEM@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | History | Musical

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 October 1953 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Die Bettleroper  »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In early 1953, it was inaccurately announced that Audrey Hepburn would star opposite Laurence Olivier in this production. See more »

Quotes

The Beggar: You're never Captain MacHeath, sir!
Captain MacHeath: Never Captain MacHeath, sir? At my mother's breast I was Captain MacHeath, sir!
The Beggar: I would rather not think so! You're not at all as I imagined. No... no... no. I've overwritten you. My captain is higher by two or three inches.
Captain MacHeath: Hmmm. Wll, sir, thanks to you I shall be higher this time tomorrow by the height of a hangman's card.
The Beggar: No, Captain, you'd never do. There is more of you in two bars of my opera than there is in your own body.
Captain MacHeath: Well, I'm sorry for it.
The Beggar: [...]
See more »

Connections

Featured in Carry on Forever: Episode #1.1 (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Let Us Take To The Road
(Uncredited)
Sung by the Chorus of Highwaymen
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A thoroughly delightful spoof of movie musicals.
24 November 1998 | by See all my reviews

John Gay's original Beggar's Opera was a spoof of the high-blown operas of his day. The Olivier film is a spoof of--movie musicals! Sir Laurence sings on horseback; people burst into arias at the worst possible time. The plot goes from the absurd to the absurd. However, if the viewer tries to see it "straight," she will be confused and put off. I don't know why this delightful film is not available on laserdisc or even videotape. Someone should dig it out of the vault and re-introduce it to the world.


12 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?
Review this title | See all 10 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Best of 2017: Our Favorite Movie and TV Stills

Take a look at our favorite movie and TV stills from the past year. Spot any of your faves?

Browse the Best of 2017