Les Miserables

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cacums
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Les Miserables

Post by cacums » Tue Dec 25, 2012 7:53 pm

Did anyone see it in theaters today?

I did. I went in knowing that the singing was going to be touch and go. The acting was great and the story was told wonderfully! I give it 3/5 stars.

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Post by Black » Wed Dec 26, 2012 5:48 am

Not my type of film I'm afraid.

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Post by Michael » Wed Dec 26, 2012 7:11 am

I'm going to see it New Years weekend. Can't wait.
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Post by Jane Poirot » Wed Dec 26, 2012 4:43 pm

I'm still making plans to see it with a friend. Can't wait! :D
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Post by alwaysPeacock » Fri Dec 28, 2012 6:33 am

Saw it Christmas day. A handful of thoughts:
  • Hooper isn't going to win any directing awards for this. He basically does the same thing over & over throughout the movie. If it's not a severe close-up, he's got the actors pacing back & forth.
  • That being said, the actors all give excellent performances, and rise above the uninspired direction.
  • If Anne Hathaway isn't even nominated for an Oscar for this, SHAME UPON THE ACADEMY! SHAME!
  • I really liked how the screenplay was reworked to reference the novel in places (Cosette's doll, Christmastime at the Thenardier's inn, Marius' grandfather, and a few more bits) & created a seamless flow to cover the elimination of the 2-act structure.
  • Purists should know: the elimination the the intermission brings about the reordering of a few numbers. Trust me, it flows.
  • Crowe isn't Philip Quast/Allun Arumstrong/Terrence Mann/Norm Lewis. Nor is he trying to be. He's as cold & unforgiving as any other film Javert I've seen, and when he sings he doesn't embarrass himself a la Pierce Brosnan in "Mamma Mia."
  • For those wondering, "Dog Eats Dog" is the only number completely cut. All the other numbers are included in whole, or with some nips & tucks. The whole movie flows very well (I'll give Hooper that much) and the cut material isn't missed.
Overall, completely worth the price of a cinema ticket (I got away with $7.50). Make sure you see it at a cinema with a good sound system, though! My cinema sounded amazing, but I know some people who complained about the sound in their cinemas & were left feeling a bit lukewarm toward the film because of it.

Word of warning (potential spoiler below, but given how old the novel & musical are, I really have no sympathy):







I noticed Gavroche's death at the barricade was met with a stony silence by my audience. Literally, dead silence in the whole room. I knew it was coming, but even still I felt a bit uncomfortable given the recent school shootings. It's not graphic at all. He gets shot twice and falls; we don't see any blood. But if you're seeing it with someone who doesn't know the story very well and/or who may be extra sensitive to that particular moment, you may want to give them a heads up before the movie begins.
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Post by Jane Poirot » Mon Dec 31, 2012 11:57 am

Saw it last night with a friend. I absolutely loved it! :D
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Post by Michael » Wed Jan 02, 2013 10:43 am

Saw it NYE. Considering I had never seen Les Mis before, I was pretty excited to see the movie. I think that most of the actors singing, though, ruined the movie. Why didn't they hire singers who can act instead of actors who think they can sing? Russell Crowe just embarassed himself. What was the director thinking? It's not like Russell Crowe has the star power these days to be packing the houses...
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Post by MrBoddy2003 » Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:30 pm

Michael wrote:Saw it NYE. Considering I had never seen Les Mis before, I was pretty excited to see the movie. I think that most of the actors singing, though, ruined the movie. Why didn't they hire singers who can act instead of actors who think they can sing? Russell Crowe just embarassed himself. What was the director thinking? It's not like Russell Crowe has the star power these days to be packing the houses...

You Said ALMOST The Exact Same Thing Adam Lambert Did About The Singing Actors
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Post by Michael » Wed Jan 02, 2013 5:01 pm

Did I? Well, I should clarify, anyway, because Adam Lambert is a singer too, but I was really thinking about Broadway caliber singers. I understand that the girl who played Eponine was a Broadway actress and you could really tell. She had a really beautiful voice.
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Post by cacums » Wed Jan 02, 2013 7:16 pm

Russell Crowe playing Javert was as bad of a casting as Gerard Butler as the Phantom. Crowe forces out the high notes his doesn't have, sings both nasal and throaty, which a singer does use to resonate he just couldn't find the perfect balance of throat, nasal, while still singing in the mask (which is the technical term for singing from the eyes, nose, cheeks, and other important resonators for this style of music).

Hugh Jackman sings to much without proper diaphragm support and rides to hard on his larnyx. His high Bb sounded more autotuned and painful than as heart stopping as it is supposed to sound.

Samantha Barks is perfect is every way but I feel that she didn't give it 100% in the movie. I've heard her sing better. But still she was by far the best singer.

Anne Hathaway... god love her. She is a terrific actress. She gave the perfect feel of Fantine, BUT she was acting too much while singing which cause her to go flat during most of I Dreamed A Dream.

Amanda Seyfried has a pretty voice but I don't think it was strong enough for a role like this. She had the High C and surprised me with it. But everything was a straight tone. There was no vibrato, no flavor, no color to her voice.

Eddie Redmayne... honey... no...

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Post by Niteshade007 » Sun Jan 20, 2013 5:08 pm

Cacums, I agree with you on a lot of your points.

Crowe was definitely the weak link in the cast. As alwaysPeacock pointed out, he's not Pierce Brosnan bad, but he has two big solo numbers and the audience is left waiting for those to end quickly. Both are beautiful songs, and his final song should give anyone chills, but here the power is lost because his range simply isn't there. He still acted well, I felt, but singing wasn't that great.

I know a lot of people loved Hugh Jackman, but he was just kind of alright for me. He's not bad by any means, but I wasn't blown away either. The man playing the priest was Jean Valjean 15 years ago. And the scenes with them together, you can tell a definite difference in quality of singing. Of course, as Michael points out, that man is an actual Broadway singer.

Samantha Barks. First, let's just all be grateful it wasn't Taylor Swift like was originally announced. But Barks, while she has a beautiful voice, disappointed me with her performance her. She's talented, beautiful, but seemed so not right for film. She wasn't playing to the camera, she was just doing her Broadway performance and there happened to be a camera. There wasn't a real change in anything, I don't feel she stretched herself or even felt totally comfortable with it. There were small moments where I thought she showed promise, like scenes with Eddie Redmayne where she wasn't actually singing, but seemed to be genuinely responding to and playing off his acting, but her singing performances were a little flat for me. Appreciated the change in death scene though, felt it played better for cinema than her walking up already shot.

Anne Hathaway was amazing. I really have no words. No critiques. She was absolutely brilliant and her performance of I Dreamed a Dream had me grossly sobbing like I hadn't done in a long time.

On Amanda Seyfriend, cacums, I am going to disagree with you. The character of Cosette is such a plain, dull character, that I feel like it's hard to get behind her. She essentially does nothing as an adult but see a guy for a second and fall in love. Meanwhile, the seemingly much more deserving Eponine, who truly knows Marius, dies and makes room for Cosette and him to be together without any complications. As one of two major players to live, you kinda want her to be a little more interesting. That being said, this was the first time I truly liked Cosette. It may be as simple as being able to see her closer and get an understanding of her expressions and emotions that made all the difference.

And on Eddie Redmayne I will disagree with cacums as well. While I have a hard time understanding why two beautiful women (one who seemingly had her ribs removed. Seriously, how is Samantha Barks so skinny? What happened to her waist?) would both fall in love with a man who bears a striking resemblance to a fish, I do feel his acting and singing were pretty good. Empty Chairs at Empty Tables being his bright spot, but the song does play much better in close up than on stage.

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Post by alwaysPeacock » Sat Jan 26, 2013 6:42 pm

Niteshade007 wrote:The man playing the priest was Jean Valjean 15 years ago.
lol, try just over 27 years ago. Colm Wilkinson originated the role in 1985. I thought it was a really nice touch having him play the priest. Like Chita Rivera's cameo in Chicago, I always like seeing the original actors make an appearance if/when they can.
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Post by Niteshade007 » Fri Feb 01, 2013 8:00 pm

alwaysPeacock,

Thanks for that! I figured he played the role for longer, but knew him from the 10th anniversary VHS tape we had. And since Les Mis just celebrated its 25th anniversary, I was able to do the math to figure out he played the role at least 15 years ago lol

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