LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews

WiCkEDrOcKS
Broadway Legend
joined:6/13/04
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/7/12 at 06:48pm
I think I'm the only person who didn't like LINCOLN. The acting was strong and the climactic amendment passage scene was pretty rousing, but I thought the movie was a total chore to sit through. And I was surprised, being a pretty big fan of Spielberg and, particularly, Kushner. I'm surprised it's caught on with audiences as well as it has.
Current Avatar: Tony-winner Idina Menzel, delivering a sucker-punch of an 11:00 number, "Always Starting Over," in IF/THEN.
Kad
Broadway Legend
joined:11/5/05
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/7/12 at 06:58pm
I'm surprised Mamma Mia! has not really been mentioned. Despite critical drubbing and scorn from theatre fans, it went on to make over $600 million worldwide. That is nothing to sneeze at.
JimCo
Chorus Member
joined:1/2/09
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/7/12 at 07:20pm
THE MASTER was pretentious, long. The acting was very good, but the movie was big yawn.
Plum
Broadway Legend
joined:3/4/04
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/7/12 at 07:30pm
Wickedrocks, I wasn't nearly as into Lincoln as I'd hoped to be either. I recognize the quality of the cinematography and the acting - Tommy Lee Jones, especially - but it ended up being underwhelming.
eatlasagna
Broadway Legend
joined:10/6/04
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/7/12 at 07:41pm
i liked LINCOLN well enough... but as I've told people... it was just such a drama... there was just so much talking (which I know, it's a drama and there's going to be just lots of it), but for some reason this one felt so different... the dialogue wasn't propelling things forward or making "action"... it was just talking and talking... i can't quite explain myself so eloquently regarding this...

WiCkEDrOcKS
Broadway Legend
joined:6/13/04
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/7/12 at 07:46pm
Right. It was extremely well-shot, well-acted, well-designed, well-edited, etc etc. But I was just...bored for 90% of it. I found it to be a pretty pretentious slog, for the most part. And I heard multiple people bemoaning how underwhelmed they were as I left the theater. As I said, its box office longevity is very shocking to me. I personally am surprised a film like LINCOLN would have such a widespread appeal and strong word of mouth when a film as charming and entertaining as THE ARTIST barely managed to make $40 million in its entire run.

(Yes I understand the subject matter of LINCOLN is inherently going to pique interest in moviegoers, whereas something like THE ARTIST has more of an uphill climb ahead of itself from the get-go.)
Current Avatar: Tony-winner Idina Menzel, delivering a sucker-punch of an 11:00 number, "Always Starting Over," in IF/THEN.
CarlosAlberto
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/10
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/7/12 at 09:33pm
I have no worries. This movie is gonna pack them in and it's gonna get award recognition. I am so looking forward to this. IMO the best musical movies as of late have been Chicago...Hairspray...Dreamgirls...Mamma Mia and I am betting the house this one will be up there if not top them.
MikeInTheDistrict
Featured Actor
joined:8/27/11
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/7/12 at 11:12pm
A somewhat optimistic article from the Times on this film as an opportunity to help revive the ailing Working Title Pictures: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/07/movies/awardsseason/working-title-films-looks-to-les-miserables-for-oscars.html?ref=movies&_r=0

Updated On: 12/7/12 at 11:12 PM
peachesr82
Stand-by
joined:12/17/08
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 04:08am
5*'s from the Telegraph.


Do you hear the people sing? Stand outside any cinema in just over one month’s time and you will. Tom Hooper’s screen adaptation of Les Misérables is a heart-soaring, crowd-delighting hit-in-waiting: the Mamma Mia it’s all right to like.

This adaptation of the long-running stage musical, itself based on Victor Hugo’s epic tale of romance and revolution in 19th century France, is Hooper’s first film since The King’s Speech (2010). It is as broad and sturdy as the shoulders of its twinkling-eyed star Hugh Jackman, who plays the reformed thief Jean Valjean – yet amid the bombast, it comes as close as a £40 million musical can to intimacy, thanks in part to an extraordinarily deeply-felt performance by Anne Hathaway as Fantine, a seamstress who falls into prostitution.

Everything about the film is enormous, from Claude-Michel Schönberg’s cannon-fire score to its bladder-twitching two-hour, 40-minute running time. Every last frame is rocket-launched at the back row of the cinema.

As in the stage production of Les Misérables, most of the dialogue is sung, not spoken, and Hooper’s masterstroke is to treat it as speech, not singing. The cast’s vocal performances were recorded on set as live rather than lip-synched to studio tapes, and this gives the music a vital, corporeal presence within the film: it’s like watching real,physical stuntwork instead of computer-generated trickery.

This also allows Hooper’s camera to zero in on his performers’ faces during the big, tremulous, heartfelt numbers, which in Les Misérables is all of them. When Russell Crowe’s Javert wrestles with his iron conscience, we can see the struggle behind his eyes. Eddie Redmayne and Amanda Seyfried play the lovers Marius and Cosette, and their duets are a miraculous clash of pouts and cheekbones.

Isabelle Allen and Daniel Huttlestone will thaw hearts as the young Cosette and the street urchin Gavroche, while Helena Bonham Carter and Sacha Baron Cohen play it grotesquely, even Burtonesquely broad as the villainous Thénardiers.

But the showstopper is Hathaway. When she half-sings, half-sobs I Dreamed A Dream, hair cropped and eyes shining like Maria Falconetti, Hooper captures her performance in a single, unblinking, breath-catching close-up. This will be the clip they show before she wins her Oscar.

Les Misérables is only Hooper’s fourth feature, and his directorial style is still bedding in: some big, comic-book camera angles feel a touch over-egged, as does the extraordinarily shallow focus he uses in close-up. But he marshals the spectacle so spectacularly that it hardly matters. Hooper’s screenwriter William Nicholson (Shadowlands) has judiciously tinkered with the song order, which makes Les Misérables feel not only definitive, but utterly cinematic. You leave with not one song in your heart, but ten.


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/film/filmreviews/9727469/Les-Miserables-review.html
henrikegerman
Broadway Legend
joined:4/29/05
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 10:09am
I am surprised Lincoln is doing so well box office wise as well. It is certainly talky. Personally I wasn't bored. Kushner's well crafted script, the topicality of the political machinations, and the assured presence of James Spader (who deserves but won't get an oscar nod), Michael Stuhlbarg, Jared Harris, Hal Holbrook and, in very small roles, Adam Driver, Colman Domingo, etc, among many others, kept my interest. My only - albeit predictable - gripe was Spielberg not knowing when to quit and going for the uberschmaltz only a couple of times (but in such unfortunate ways) near the end when so much less would have been so much more. But I still think it's a very fine film.
Huey's Pop
Stand-by
joined:4/19/05
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 10:41am
I echo your review of The Master. Upon leaving the theater, my memory of the previous 150 minutes was permanently erased.

On the other hand, I saw Hitchcock last week, and can't stop thinking about it.

Updated On: 12/8/12 at 10:41 AM
WiCkEDrOcKS
Broadway Legend
joined:6/13/04
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 10:57am
I enjoyed HITCHCOCK as well! It's certainly not without flaws, but I was pretty moved by Alma and Hitch's relationship by the end. Hopkins and Mirren deserve nominations, but I fear they'll both be shut out.
Current Avatar: Tony-winner Idina Menzel, delivering a sucker-punch of an 11:00 number, "Always Starting Over," in IF/THEN.
henrikegerman
Broadway Legend
joined:4/29/05
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 11:00am
Hitchcock is exactly what it should be, no more or less. Satisfying goofy fun with heart and a cast who understands exactly what they're doing.
jayinchelsea
Broadway Star
joined:4/9/09
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 02:00pm
If Rachel Weisz (whom I love) is giving the best female performance of the year (check out New York mag), then anything could happen. I think Helen Mirren has a good chance for a nomination (an Oscar darling in a very weak year for women), as does Jessica Chastain if the film does well.
broadwaybabywannabe2
Featured Actor
joined:11/9/11
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 02:28pm
i just Googled "reviews for LES MIS" and got a whole page filled with negative to luke warm reviews of the film, from all over the internet...as of this moment i am stopping myself from reading anymore reviews until i see the movie for myself...

and btw LINCOLN is so far THE BEST MOVIE of 2012 from all that i have seen, and if it finishes #1 for the year for me, i will be happy...by far THE BEST MOVIE Speilberg has made IMHO...TONY KUSHNER should get another Pulitzer Price for the screenplay...:)
henrikegerman
Broadway Legend
joined:4/29/05
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 04:17pm
Why exactly is this being considered a "very weak year for [leading] women".

Marion Cotillard, Jennifer Lawrence, Emannuelle Riva, Quvenzhane Wallis, Jessica Chastain, Rachel Weisz, Keira Knightley, Linda Cardellini, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Helen Mirren, Maggie Smith, Emayatzy Corinealdi, Judi Dench, Meryl Streep, Greta Gerwig and Naomi Watts.

What are they chopped liver?

Sure, many big movies didn't have leading ladies, and not all of the above listed have even a slight chance of a nomination. And some are in movies that have been little seen (so what? last year Demian Bichir was nominated for a relatively little seen movie; no one argued it was a weak year for leading men).

At least six of the best actress possibilities are stars of movies that could possibly get multiple nominations in major categories including perhaps best picture: Lawrence, Riva, Chastain, Wallis, Knightley and, perhaps to a lesser extent, Watts.

And Chastain is the lead, and the only lead, in what now looks to be the frontrunner for best picture.

The last year a movie with even a nominated female lead won best picture was 2004 (Million Dollar Baby, Swank won the oscar). Consider the years since then:

2005: Crash won, no female lead (granted, there was no lead in Crash). And no other female leads in the other four nominated movies: Brokeback, Capote, Good Night and Good Luck and Munich.

2006: The Departed won, no female lead. And of the four other nominated movies only one (The Queen) had a female lead (the others were Babel, Letters from IwonJima, Little Miss Sunshine).

2007: No Country for Old Men won, no female lead. Of the also nominated Atonement, Juno, Michael Clayton and There Will Be Blood, two out of four had female leads (Atonement, Juno).

2008: Slumdog Millionaire won, no female lead. Of the also nominated Benjamin Button, Frost/Nixon, Milk and The Reader only The Reader had a female lead.

2009: The winner, The Hurt Locker had no female lead. Also nominated Avatar (no female lead), The Blind Side (female lead), District 9 (no female lead), An Education (female lead), Inglorious Bastards (no female lead), Precious (female lead), A Serious Man (no female lead), Up (animated, no female lead), Up in the Air (no female lead).

Out of ten nominated best pics, 3 had female leads (each scoring a best actress nod).

2010: The King's Speech won (no female lead). 4 out of the 10 nominated movies had female leads (Black Swan, The Kids Are All Right (two female leads), True Grit and Winter's Bone. 3 of them had best actress nominees, the other had (True Grit) had its lead nominated as supporting.

2011: Of the ten nominated movies (The Artist - winner, The Descendants, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, The Help, Hugo, Midnight in Paris, Moneyball, The Tree of Life and Warhorse) only one (The Help) had a female lead (it had two actually). OK, maybe Bejo could be considered lead which would bring it to 2/10.

To repeat: Last year, 1/10 of the ten nominated movies had a female lead.

One could argue this is a pretty damn good year for women in leading roles. Certainly there have been many years that were a lot worse.




Updated On: 12/8/12 at 04:17 PM
ray-andallthatjazz86
Broadway Legend
joined:8/2/05
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 04:47pm
Henrik, I love you. That was my immediate reaction when I read the comment about it being a "very weak year for women." In what context? As Henrik pointed out, there's a range of brilliant performances; I will say that in my opinion there's great performances by women *every year*, whether the Oscars want to recognize it or not. This year is no exception, there's so many wonderful performances all around. Mirren is only one of a number of actresses in the U.S and abroad (it's shocking to me how little people recognize world cinema sometimes) giving fantastic and very different performances in film.
I loved THE MASTER, it was one of my favorite movies of the year and one of the most affecting films I have ever seen. However, like I've said before, most of my friends and clearly, most everyone on this board absolutely hated it so I don't expect it to do that well at the Oscars. I will say that I'd vote for Joaquin Phoenix's unsettling performance whatever year it was on, I found it to be one of my all time favorite lead actor performances.


"Some people can thrive and bloom living life in a living room, that's perfect for some people of one hundred and five. But I at least gotta try, when I think of all the sights that I gotta see, all the places I gotta play, all the things that I gotta be at"
Updated On: 12/8/12 at 04:47 PM
bdn223
Broadway Star
joined:6/14/08
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 05:02pm
It isn't considered a strong year for leading actress because Meryl Streep is not in contention (yes she did Hope Springs, but she had to pay for Mamie and Ben's wedding somehow= she did do Hope Springs for the $$ and not the art).

In reality there were no big female driven films this year, (the Help, Julie and Julia, Eat Pray Love or even Bridesmaids). Yes there was The Hunger Games and Twilght, but other than those two name another major film this year with a female protagonist.

Most films this year with female leads were indepent films meaning very few people saw them. There is no real "omg did you Meryl Streep in The Iron Lady" this year compared to men with a must see performances by Daniel Day Lewis, Hugh Jackman, and Bradley Cooper.
BWNUT
Stand-by
joined:9/26/07
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 05:08pm
I'm with people who do not get "Lincoln". It's a slog, a chore to sit through. I admired the photography, production design, costumes and all that technical stuff but the movie as a whole was just dull and too talky. And LONG. There were some stretches that felt like I was watching C-Span (maybe I'm just not into all that legislative stuff). The family drama was more interesting to me but it felt like it was just shoehorned into the story. How the assassination was presented was a big letdown. But I was certainly mesmerized by DDL's performance. It's fascinating to watch his acting choices: the mannerisms, facial expressions, the voice, even his gait. And talk about the eyes as the window to a man's mind and soul. He WAS Lincoln. His performance certainly is the one to beat.
Kad
Broadway Legend
joined:11/5/05
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 05:20pm
There were wonderful performances from leading actresses but none that really seem to get people thrilled and talking. There's no Streep v. Davis. There's nothing arousing passionate support.
henrikegerman
Broadway Legend
joined:4/29/05
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 08:06pm
"Yes there was The Hunger Games and Twilght, but other than those two name another major film this year with a female protagonist."

Anna Karenina, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Zero Dark Thirty, Rust and Bone, Amour, The Impossible, The Deep Blue Sea, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Quartet, Hope Springs, and several others (see my message below).

bdn223
Broadway Star
joined:6/14/08
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/8/12 at 11:11pm
Of those films only Hope Springs is not an independent film.
My Oh My
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/07
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/9/12 at 10:13am
I still find the "Oscar buzz" incredibly obnoxious because it all seems very knee jerk; the criteria used so far in determining nominees is a joke. Might as well have a nomination for "Epicness" and a special Oscar for "Les Miserables," because it's, well, "Les Miserables."

I love this musical too much to limit my options to "it sucks" or "OMFG, OSCAR!" As long as I like it, but if I don't, get ready for a million ranty rants! ROFLMFO! XD
Recreation of original John Cameron orchestration to "On My Own" by yours truly. Click player below to hear.
henrikegerman
Broadway Legend
joined:4/29/05
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/9/12 at 11:32am
"Of those films only Hope Springs is not an independent film."

And that's a significant distinction because.... (especially in the era of the Weinsteins and well into their fourth decade)
Kad
Broadway Legend
joined:11/5/05
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/9/12 at 11:42am
He meant "major" motion picture, as in major box office success. None of those films you mentioned, henrik, will gross particularly well- most Americans may only be vaguely aware of them.
tazber
Broadway Legend
joined:5/10/05
LES MISERABLES Film Official Reviews
Posted: 12/9/12 at 11:50am
There were wonderful performances from leading actresses but none that really seem to get people thrilled and talking. There's no Streep v. Davis. There's nothing arousing passionate support.

This.

We're talking in the context of awards prognostication, not in the context of quality performances.

The other 3 acting categories already have front runners and horse races. Lead actress seems to be missing any one or two performances that have people talking.
"Weak year" is referring to buzz, not quality.




....but the world goes 'round