In Review: Twist (Sky Cinema) Update to a Dicken’s Classic

Sky Cinema's Modern Twist on a Dicken's Classic

Synopsis: In this thrilling update to a Dicken’s classic. A gang of street hustlers plan the heist of the century.


The Story

Charles Dicken’s classic of Oliver Twist gets a modern reboot, which sees an old Oliver get involved in an art heist. However, this version of the tale doesn’t have song or dance. Instead, it’s straight into the story. Although this version is a very different story.

To begin with, we learn that young Oliver Twist wasn’t orphaned as a baby. In this version, he gets to spend the first bit of his childhood with his mother who is an artist. Additionally, she forges a very special relationship with her son and teaches him about art. Which spurs him on to go into street art where he puts his own twist on classic paintings. Hence his street name of Twist.

When his mum dies. Oliver is around 10 years old and chooses to live on the streets rather than go into the care system. When he tries to help a young woman that is in a bit of trouble with a traffic warden. He bumps into Dodge (The Artful Dodger) and her friend Batesey who introduce him to Fagin and Nancy.

As Twist gets to know Nancy who has the street name of Red. He slowly falls into a life of crime and gets involved in a massive art heist.


The Acting

The cast of this film does a pretty good job of filling the roles they have to play. Michael Caine is excellent as Fagin, who in this version of events is a former art dealer turned thief. The partnership that Fagin has with Sikes who is played by Lena Headey is very much in keeping with how it has always been portrayed. A mutual partnership where one person’s methods are more extreme than the other partners. Headey does a fantastic job of embodying Sikes and is pretty intimidating in the role.

Playing Oliver is Rafferty Law who plays his as a likable rogue with a sensitive and artistic side. The onscreen relationship he has with Nancy (Sophie Simnett) is quite believable. I particularly enjoyed the part when Oliver was teaching Nancy about art so she could pose as a convincing art student.

Rounding out the gang is Rita Ora as Dodge and Franz Drameh as her mate Batesey. I was a little disappointed that Dodge didn’t get more to do. Especially given that she is very much based on the artful dodger. But I guess the writer had to sacrifice that in order to write the romance between Oliver and Nancy.

As we all know. The story of Oliver Twist includes a wealthy aristocrat called Mr. Brownlow who winds up adopting Oliver because they are related. In this version of the tale. Brownlow is a police detective who is played by Noel Clarke. Although his character still winds up helping Oliver out.



Twist proves to be a fun movie with last of action and great visuals of the rooftops of London as we see the main characters using Parkour to outrun the law. The sequence that introduces Oliver to Dodge is particularly well shot.

The plot is kept relatively simple with Fagin being the mastermind behind the art heists. While Sikes is the muscle and pretty much the leader on the ground. The sequences where they steal the painting are pretty funny. Especially when Brownlow’s somewhat dimwitted partner gets involved.

Overall. This is not a terrible movie. It’s not the best thing have seen. But as far as it is a modern interpretation of a classic Dicken’s story. It is not that bad. Then again. I didn’t really have huge expectations going into this. I just thought the idea of a modern Oliver Twist would be cool and watched because I wanted to see how they’d do it.


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Twist (Sky Cinema) Update to a Dicken's Classic
  • Story
  • Acting
  • CGI and Stunts
  • Incidental Music

Ian Cullen is the founder of and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: When he is not writing for Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of You can contact ian at:
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