I didn't understand or like Dickens' story-telling until I watched this film. Something clicked as to how he (Dickens) protrays the morals in his characters and his style of writing.
The Elder Martin Chuzzlewit at first seems like a dumb, cranky old man who complains much. He treats his grandson (Martin) cruelly when younger Martin falls in love with his charge, Mary. To earn a living, so that he can marry Mary, younger Martin sets out to find his fortune in America--where it turns into a disaster and he nearly dies!
During the tale of the story we also meet Tom Pinch (who is one of my favorite characters), his sister (Ruth--another favorite), the arrogant Mr. Pecksniff and his two daughters ("Cherry" and "Merry"), the evil Jonas, and the kind-hearted old man (Mr. Chuffey), to name a few.
This is just the cream of the story, and doesn't do any justice in telling you of the example of nobility, honor, and righteous character Dickens' protrays in this story. I could watch this the film over and over and not tire of it. The surprise ending is the best part. I always have to watch it several times before ending the movie. =) You will not be disappointed with this film.