Les Miserables (2012)
Running Time: 2 hr & 38 mins – Genre: Drama, Musical, Romance
To say that I love musicals is a slight understatement. I can watch them over and over again and then also listen to the soundtracks in my free time. Les Miserables is one of my absolute favorites. In fact a few years ago I made my sister sit in the rain for over two hours just to watch the live show. But enough about that and on to the movie.
I was mightily impressed with the choice of actors in this movie. I will admit that I was a little hesitant of Hugh Jackman and not because of his acting style I just didn’t know he could sing. Russell Crowe was also amazing. He played the part of a super zealous mega cop very well. And Anne Hathaway, all I can say is that I had tears running down my face when she sang “I Dreamed a Dream.” Her portrayal of a woman who had her dreams and hopes dashed away by the one careless act was breath taking.
Now for the music because this is after all a musical with very little dialog added in. I do not think there is a song in this musical that I do not like. From the songs that are supposed to add humor like “Master of the House” to songs of lost love, hope, and faith. It is hard for me to choose a favorite, But right now I think “On my Own” is way up there.
The costumes, make-up and set really impressed. The “Miserables” looked rough with their tattered clothing and sores oozing.Begging for a chance to live another day. Then when the Resistance is about to start the revolt the running through the streets of Paris and making the blockades seemed very realistic. I did some research when the movie first came out and the director complained that it was hard to get the carpenters to build of kilter like it was back in the day to get the real 19th century feel.
So I do recommend this movie or maybe a better way to say it this 2 and half hour song to most anyone. So if you know you can’t handle that amount of singing you might want to pass on this but if the thought doesn’t scare you, enjoy. I have watched this movie over and over again and will watch it probably a hundred more. So i give this film….
So this movie was a Culture shock to me and probably a big clue that I am not going to like “Musicals” I mean I love Grease, and The Classics because they had speaking lines on top of just singing. *Spoiler Alert* If you cannot handle people singing their dialog do not watch this movie.
With that being said several people have impressed me in this movie. First of all I must say the cast was very talented with their singing voice. The most surprising was Sacha Baron Cohen and Helen Bonham Carter they impressed me very much and was a surprise to see them in this movie. The Top billed actors were great. Even Russell Crowe, the Chemistry between Russell Crowe and Hugh Jackman was done very well, however you can’t really take them seriously when they are singing at each other.
Anne Hathaway who’s role didn’t play long stuck out the most to me, she played the character very well and was able to pull off the singing dialog very well. He character who’s role seemed to be a small role to me ended up being a vital role especially with Jean Valjean.
The Cinematics was done well and the sound effects were about normal to me. The Soundtrack (Also the dialog I guess) is good I remember singing some of these songs in Choir in high school. But honestly it was distracting and hard for me to watch due to the constant singing dialog. Especially when there are 3-4 people singing at each other it’s hard for me to keep a grasp on what’s going on.
The Dialog “Lyrics” is fair, the story plays out well especially between Jean Valjean and Javier, the good guy/ bad guy epic story but sung out loud.
Overall it was very difficult to keep my focus due to no dialog just singing at each other, on the flip side of that the acting is done well due to singing at each other, However for me it’s hard to take a story seriously if I am being sang at, I mean think of it like this if your grandma died would you send a singing tell-a-gram to tell your other loved ones? And would they take it seriously? But then again this is a “MUSICAL” but my defending point it Grease, Wizard of Oz, Music Man, Willy Wonka were all musicals too….
Look Down! Look Down! Keep your attention from the screen!
Look Down! Look Down! We sing the script in every scene
I have to apologize for the lateness of this week’s post for I am solely responsible. I just had a really hard time getting through this movie. After an hour in it just got to be a chore to watch any more. However I did get through it and now I have a supreme accomplishment under my belt. Needless to say I didn’t enjoy this movie. I am quite disappointed that I loathe this movie because there are thousands of people that have enjoyed the play on Broadway for many years. That makes me feel like I’m not cultured enough. Am I missing something? Well, lets get into my feelings more in depth and then you can tell me what I failed to see (hear). Spoilers ahead.
First I would like to open this box by giving you the positive aspects of “The Miserable”. I thought the cast was great. Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway, Amanda Seyfried, Sacha Baron Cohen, and Helena Bonham Carter. Usually a star studded cast like this will help sway my “like”. Not today folks. Out of all of them Sacha was my favorite as he amused me with his money hungry grubby ways. His song that he sang was probably my favorite of the movie. Song? Yes, If you didn’t already know this is a musical and it is all song. Every single bit of it. There are a few spoken words but mostly constant singing. The final thing that I actually thought was well done was the CGI. It was well placed and well done. Although I think they hit their budget on the opening scene. Ha! No, the lighting and overall tone of the film was good and properly done as you feel like it is the 19th century.
My overall gripe with the movie is that the plot of the entire movie is driven by the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard. The main character (Jean Valjean) played by Jackman does 19 years of “time” for stealing a piece of bread. After that he is on parole (for life) for stealing this small piece of bread. He obviously breaks his parole and the entire movie he is chased by a Prefect (Russell Crowe). The Prefect dedicates his “existence” to bringing him to justice. Justice! Seriously!? Justice. For stealing a piece of bread. Ok, I understand that they did some messed up things way back then but c’mon. Let’s get serious. This was not motivation enough to drive this individual so crazy that he spends his entire adult life chasing this guy. See, we all do things based on motivation. With the proper motivation it would seem plausible. Let me give you an example. A young boy at the age of 9 let’s say his name is Javert (psst! The Prefect dude) and let’s say that he witnesses a criminal break into his house and rape his mother. Followed by tying Javert to a chair and makes him watch as he stuff’s bread into her mouth. So much bread that it suffocates her in front of his eyes. Now THIS is something to drive this person with the proper motivation to bring this so called “criminal” to justice. But alas we don’t get that. We are just supposed to go with the flow because this is based on a play that has been in circulation since 1862. I’m not one to “go with the flow”. I also can’t understand why Javert killed himself. I understand he was obsessed and that Jean Valjean had made him question his life for sparing that same life. So, just move on Man! C’mon! Also, why did Fantine & Valjean both die. Neither was explained but again, here we go. Let’s go with the flow because it’s an institution. The revolution played very subtle. Many deaths yet people still had time to sing till their last breath. “Hey, I just took a bullet for you. It hurts. But I’m still going to sing about lovin’ you”. Speaking of the girl that dies for the A-hole that could give a shi*. He tells her that he wished that he could heal her with words of “love”. Implying that he loves her. Great, that’s nice lets tell a dying woman some lies before she heads for the great beyond. Great suitor for Collette. I mean Cosette.
The music was … music. There were some catchy songs in there that may have you singing long after you sit through it. Like, “Look Down”, “Master of the House”, or nope I got nothing. Much of the music I wanted to fast forward through. I didn’t. But still had me waiting for something story related to happen. Because as they start singing they will just hem-haw back and forth for 3-4 minutes while you bathe in the common sound of their song. By the way, I disliked Russell Crowe singing very much. His character just made no sense so, his songs were a waste of time for me. They all had good singing voices. Nobody was “bad” or anything. In fact, I was impressed by how high Amanda Seyfried could get. It was very reminiscent to like a Snow White or early Disney Princess voice. Even if you had taken the music out there was still the bad plot devices. So, “at the end of the day”…
Look Down! Look Down! I just stole a tiny bite of some pie!
Look Down! Look Down! For doing that I just might die!
for “who am I” to keep on writing this… re——–view!
Comic book Connection: Hugh Jackman: x-men collection, Wolverine collection – Anne Hathaway: Batman-Dark Knight Rises – Russell Crowe: Man of Steel.
Nudity Bonus: Cleavage don’t count.