Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?

My Oh My
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/07
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 12:08am
^ That's awesome and funny at the same time. XD

It's wonderful that people could lose themselves in the film like that. It's funny that they're clapping for actors that can't hear them, hehe!
Recreation of original John Cameron orchestration to "On My Own" by yours truly. Click player below to hear.
PB ENT.
Broadway Legend
joined:6/11/03
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 12:11am
RE: Les Miz...so much to digest. Did anyone else lose it when Javert bends down to pin his medal of honor on the body of the young Gavroche? What a great directional choice!
www.pbentertainmentinc.com BWW regional writer "Philadelphia/South Jersey"
Johnnycantdecide
Featured Actor
joined:6/1/11
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 12:15am
^^ that moment was one of my favorite moments of the entire film.
GatorNY
Broadway Legend
joined:6/19/08
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 12:29am
I loved when Tveit got shot and fell out of the window and gets stuck in the iconic pose from the barricade in the live theatrical version. I did wish that Eponine had gone with Fantine to get JVJ at the end. From a movie story telling sense, though it made no sense for the to be there with Fantine, while JVJ is dying.
I'm sure that we were not the only ones thinking of the Newtown, CT children, when Gavroche was shot.


"The price of love is loss, but still we pay; We love anyway."
Updated On: 12/26/12 at 12:29 AM
baerenjunge
Swing
joined:12/19/12
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 12:33am
Here's some (admittedly long-winded) observations I made on my facebook page earlier today.

Anne Hathaway invests herself fully and shines for her third of the film. Her big song will no doubt snag her an Oscar nod. Her scenes are almost uniformly affecting.

Eddie Redmayne is a dashing Marius and while he occasionally sings with a raised larynx (a "Knödel" to us classical singers), his tenor is a pleasing one. Very strong film presence.

Samantha Barks ought to win the award for making the most of a small part. Her "On My Own" is heartbreaking...anyone who has ever experienced unrequited love will weep!

Isabelle Allen was a charming Little Cosette, with a beautiful young voice. Daniel Huttlestone's Gavroche was an utter delight!

Sacha Baron Cohen and Helena Bonham Carter squeeze every bit of comedy and snarl possible from Msr. & Mme Thénardier...and never do their antics seem overwrought. The costume/hair/makeup team really made them look as nasty on the exterior as they are on the inside. "Master of the House" is a highlight!

Hugh Jackman gave a mostly solid performance. I've been on the record saying that his vocal technique suffers from a nasality on certain vowels, but luckily this problem wasn't prevalent. I wish though, that they'd lowered the key a step for "Bring Him Home"...I usually don't like toying with original keys, but this was one case where I'd have accepted it. Hugh was deeply affecting during "What Have I Done?" as well as his final scenes. Tom Hooper couldn't have done much better than casting this Aussie!

Amanda Seyfried was a lovely, sympathetic Cosette. Her middle register is definitely stronger than at the very wispy upper register...a definite drawback.

Russell Crowe fell into the unfortunate trap of compensating for his lack of vocal finesse by over-singing (i.e. barking) through 90% of his lines. Where some actors in the piece needed to put more VOICE into the sung lines, Crowe should have acted/spoke more of his lines to tell the story more effectively. By the end of his story arc, one hopefully leaves the theater/cinema with some morsel of compassion for Javert...and sadly I didn't feel much for him. Very conflicted about his performance. Thumbs down...

Tom Hooper keeps the pacing moving along at a clip, which makes the nearly three-hour runtime seem less taxing. I wasn't too annoyed by his closeups for the most part. I will say that he should have allowed his actors to put more VOICE into more of the conversational recits. Also at times, some phrases might sound unintelligible to those who may not know the libretto inside and out. Nevertheless, Hooper has a great feel on what emotions make this musical "tick" and he more often than not taps into said emotions. (SEE the last ten minutes of the film!) Special thanks to Hooper for casting Colm Wilkinson (the original Jean Valjean) as the Bishop of Digne and Frances Ruffelle (the original Eponine) as a featured prostitute. Great way to pay homage and respect!

Finally...I will say that it wasn't going to be easy for Tom Hooper (or ANY director for that matter) to create a "perfect" film version of "Les Misérables" that would please every last fan of the musical or newcomer to the film. The source material is a big, lumbering, epic modern opera with a 25+ year following of fans--a group of which I proudly claim membership...and a decoder ring. He has created a film with some flaws, but also a great number of successes.
eatlasagna
Broadway Legend
joined:10/6/04
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 12:40am
what did you all think of the doctor singing during EVERY DAY... it bothered me but it didn't... it was more... oh he's singing now?!?!
GatorNY
Broadway Legend
joined:6/19/08
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 12:44am
Someone posted somewhere that they thought that this was not as good as the Chicago Movie. Can someone explain that to me? Am I too much in love with the stage version that I can't see the movie as others? DO all movie reviews go in trying to forget what they have previously seen on stage, if they have scene the musical?
"The price of love is loss, but still we pay; We love anyway."
Pan_Am_L-1011
Swing
joined:12/11/10
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 12:46am
I thought it was complete and utter ****. I absolutely hated it. Aside from Hathaway and Barks, I didn't think there was another good performance. Carter and Cohen were terrible and Master of the House was a mess. No one in the theater laughted at any point during it, however, there was a lot of awkward laughter when Valjean was in the woods with young Cosette (who was charming) and when Valjean spoke of Marius. I am embarrassed for Russell Crowe, who's no better singer than I. The orchestrations were terrible and completely ruined At The End of the Day and Master of the House. It was boring to death. Were I not with friends I would have walked out. IMO it was worse than the POTO movie and I didn't think it was possible. They took one of the greatest and most beloved musicals and made it **** by casting big names who cannot sing. A collassal disappointment.
Plum
Broadway Legend
joined:3/4/04
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 12:57am
Ugh, yes, the death of Gavroche was utterly disturbing.

There was also this shot of Enjolras I really liked during...I think it was "Do You Hear the People Sing?", when he's standing on General Lamarque's funeral carriage. He's waving the flag around, and for a moment he just looks like he's having a hard time with it because it's heavy and unwieldy, and he looks like the physically vulnerable idiot that, on one level, he is, and it hurts to know he'll be dying later. I wish we'd gotten more of that.
sabrelady
Broadway Legend
joined:5/16/03
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 01:43am
when Javert bends down to pin his medal of honor on the body of the young Gavroche? What a great directional choice!

Yes, and I wish he'd shown more of this w Crowe. This is the 1st crack in Javert but not enough to let u care w his suicide.

( I think the "back crack" was just 2 make sure everyone knew- yup he reeeely is dead!)
Words that confuse censors:Fecund,penal,taint, titmouse, cockatoo,coccyx, ballcock, cockeye, prickly,kumquat, titter,cunning linguist, insertion, gobble, guzzle, swallow, manhole, rimshot,ramrod,come, fallacious, lugubrious,rectify,Uranus, angina, paradiddle,spotted dick,dictum, frock,cunctation, engorge,turgid,stiff, bush, uvula, crapulence, masticate, Dick Butkus, gherkin and of course the always bewildering lickety split. As you can see, context is every thing. Chuck Lorre Addendum: 555 382 5968 "Sexarama, Hexarama, Queeriosis, Feariosis!" Alec Baldwin
sabrelady
Broadway Legend
joined:5/16/03
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 01:44am
double post due to an error message. sorry.

Words that confuse censors:Fecund,penal,taint, titmouse, cockatoo,coccyx, ballcock, cockeye, prickly,kumquat, titter,cunning linguist, insertion, gobble, guzzle, swallow, manhole, rimshot,ramrod,come, fallacious, lugubrious,rectify,Uranus, angina, paradiddle,spotted dick,dictum, frock,cunctation, engorge,turgid,stiff, bush, uvula, crapulence, masticate, Dick Butkus, gherkin and of course the always bewildering lickety split. As you can see, context is every thing. Chuck Lorre Addendum: 555 382 5968 "Sexarama, Hexarama, Queeriosis, Feariosis!" Alec Baldwin
Updated On: 12/26/12 at 01:44 AM
DAME
Broadway Legend
joined:4/15/04
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 02:00am
Saw it again this evening. Enjoyed it just as much. The first time I saw it was with a industry crowd in one of those screenings. Tonight I saw it at the Sherman Oaks Galleria with a family audience. The audience was really into it . So glad it appears to be doing well. I know lots of non theater or musical loving folks that plan to see it this weekend. After the disasters of Rock Of Ages , Nine, and Rent.. it is a relief that this looks like a hit.
HUSSY POWER! ------ HUSSY POWER!
rosscoe(au)
Broadway Legend
joined:8/20/05
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 02:07am
I posted this on Saturday in the other thread...

Just got home from a packed screening in Brisbane Australia, loved some things, hated others. Crowe was a major surprise, On My Own was stunning, Empty Chairs at Empty Tables was heartbreaking. The last forty or so minutes was very emotion.

It's a pity someone like David Lean was not around to direct this, it should have been a grand sweeping 70mm movie or at least widescreen, at times it felt like a chamber piece.

Liked it a lot , just wanted more epic story telling.

Should also add that the Continuity in this movie was awful and beyond sloppy
Well I didn't want to get into it, but he's a Satanist. Every full moon he sacrifices 4 puppies to the Dark Lord and smears their blood on his paino. This should help you understand the score for Wicked a little bit more. Tazber's: Reply to Is Stephen Schwartz a Practicing Christian
aasjb4ever
Broadway Legend
joined:3/29/09
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 02:16am
Saw it at Noon earlier today (yesterday at this point) with my mom and was reduced to a blubbering mess. Went again tonight (last night) at 10:45 with friends and I definitely didn’t have the same reaction at all. When I was with my mom, Fantine, Eponine, Gavroche and Valjean’s deaths were deeply moving, visceral experiences that barely returned when I went again tonight with my friends.

I’m dead from these cumulative 6 hours of beauty to put real thoughts down, but this adaptation sets the new standard for how movie musicals will be made and received from here on out.
What a colossal piece of crap! It'll probably run for years.
kyl3fong2
Broadway Star
joined:3/10/11
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 02:37am
@best12bars -- Interesting that you noticed those things about the sound mixing! I thought it was just the speakers in my movie theatre broken since all the sound from the singing only came from the front two speakers so it came a bit soft.


Other than that, I LOVED the movie. Definitely going to go see it again. Amanda Seyfried thoroughly surprised me, and I thought that her vocals worked in the context of the film and was actually very sweet.

Aaron Tveit, Hugh Jackman, Eddie Redmayne and Anne Hathaway were all phenomenal. And the close-ups didn't bother me as much as everyone has been saying they would.

StageManager2
Broadway Legend
joined:10/21/05
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 06:20am
I hated it, almost every single thing about it. It was boring, the shaky camera was annoying, hated Jackman's voice. Very disappointed in his "Bring Him Home" and dreaded each time he opened his mouth to sing, which was almost all the time.

Also, the whole thing felt rushed; hardly any character development. It was like an abridged version of the stage show itself. So many unnecessary cuts and odd lyric replacements/rearrangements. They really butchered the score.

I definitely won't be seeing it again. The inadequate voices and talk-singing were like nails on a chalkboard. The live singing seemed like a good idea at the time, but it needed good voices to pull it off. Other than Jackman, the voices of Crowe and Seyfried were pretty bad, as well. Crowe sounded like it hurt to sing and Seyfried sounded like a squeaky toy. Redmayne was okay (he sounded like he swallowed an apple), but his "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables" was surprisingly good although too little too late. Barks, Tveit, and Hathaway fared better, especially when they were allowed to belt a little though Tveit's voice wasn't very commanding.

In short, the whole thing was a mess. I couldn't wait for it to end. Very different from the screenplay that was leaked in the fall. That kept more of the score intact and a lot of potential, I thought. When I read it, I got very excited. But the final product left a lot to be desired.

Salve, Regina, Mater misericordiae
Vita, dulcedo, et spes nostra
Salve, Salve Regina
Ad te clamamus exsules filii Eva
Ad te suspiramus, gementes et flentes
O clemens O pia
Updated On: 12/26/12 at 06:20 AM
best12bars
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/05
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 07:31am
It's funny you thought it felt rushed, and after Cosette grows up, I couldn't wait for them to pick up the pace with the plot. I thought the rest of the story right to the end dragged horribly. (A fault of the original stage show.)
"Jaws is the Citizen Kane of movies."
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madbrian
Broadway Legend
joined:6/1/06
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 07:34am
I saw it last night, and for me it lived up to both the hype as well as my expectations. Hathaway was even better than advertized. Eddie Redmayne was incredible, and I can't believe he's not getting award recognition (Alan Arkin, really?).

I had to go to a much later show than I had expected, because shows were selling out here in northern NJ.
"It does me no injury for my neighbour to say there are 20 gods or no god. It neither picks my pocket, nor breaks my leg." -- Thomas Jefferson
Patash
Broadway Legend
joined:5/27/08
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 08:17am
I loved that the movie became something other than being about "singing". I loved that the actors put emotions (or ACTING) above vocal training (whether it was because they lacked the training, or were simply doing it to be more effective). The only one who didn't get that memo was Crowe who tried so hard to SING rather than ACT songs that were way beyond his vocal ability. His struggle to sing really hurt his performance, in my opinion.

Incidentally, having seen the stage version maybe four times, I will say that the film did a great job of "explaining" the time jumps, character relations, etc, which always seem a little confusing to those seeing the musical for the first time. The overall editing was excellent in my book.
Jordan Catalano
Broadway Legend
joined:10/9/05
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 09:22am
I just want to say that I was more surprised with Crowe than anything else. Listening to re soundtrack before seeing the film I was tally unimpressed but on screen watching him, I thought he was fabulous. And I do think that by the time he kills himself, you get a better sense of why he's doing it than you get watching the show the stage. I think that's a fault of the show itself though in not fleshing out that character, but on screen it comes across as clear as it's ever going to.

Updated On: 12/26/12 at 09:22 AM
michellek45
Leading Actor
joined:5/20/11
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 09:57am
eatlasagna- That's not a doctor, that's Marius' grandfather. In the book they have a very troubled relationship, with Marius' grandfather lying to Marius about his father so that he never meets him. Long story short, Marius finds out the truth, becomes obsessed with his father, and basically disowns his grandfather. That's why he, a rich boy, is living in the same squalor that the Thenardiers do, and it's how he meets Eponine and her parents. He also goes to ask his grandfather for permission to marry Cosette, which the grandfather denies. Then at the end Valjean carries Marius back to the grandfather's house and they reconcile.
Jane2
Broadway Legend
joined:2/13/04
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 10:32am
Besty, I agree with you about the pace. It was so slow at times, I admit to closing my eyes and starting to drift off in certain places.
<-----craves juicy pizza
YouWantitWhen????
Broadway Legend
joined:7/16/05
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 10:43am
I saw it Monday night - I did not love it as much as some of you. I found the closeups distracting, and Crowe's singing very disappointing. I guess I am too familiar with the cast recordings, and used to a much stronger, more robust Javert. I thought singing wise he was the weakest link by far. I also thought that those not familiar with the story would be lost.

I was bored in parts.

Hathaway was the best thing in the film, and deserves the accolades she is getting. Jackman was fine, though sometime his voice was better than others. The younger cast was strong, though the story does plod along.

But, I found the focus on closeups, and some of the shaky camera work distracting, and at times I was looking at my watch.

Maybe I was expecting too much, and I know that some folks loved it. I loved parts of it, but the sum of the entire movie was not as great for me as its parts.
<---------- No kids, no man, but I have some great pussies! And, If you're lucky, you too can call me Your Sassy Hagness.
best12bars
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/05
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 10:49am
You weren't alone, Jane & YWIW. I saw a lot of watch-checking in the audience after the first 90 minutes.

They did applaud at the start of the credits, though. Not a lot, but a respectful response.

By comparison, they applauded more at the end of Lincoln, and at the end of The King's Speech, there was huge applause.
"Jaws is the Citizen Kane of movies."
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SporkGoddess
Broadway Legend
joined:7/27/05
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 10:51am
"I can't believe he's not getting award recognition (Alan Arkin, really?)."

It wouldn't be the first time Alan Arkin stole an Oscar from someone... (/Still Bitter about Blood Diamond)

So "Everyday" is in the movie? So we have to hear Seyfried sing a C6? Oy.

I've seen a few people talk about the movie's storyline having poor continuity. I'll have to see if I agree, as I am a stickler about continuity.
Jimmy, what are you doing here in the middle of the night? It's almost 9 PM!
Updated On: 12/26/12 at 10:51 AM
YouWantitWhen????
Broadway Legend
joined:7/16/05
Les Mis?rables: So, what did you think?
Posted: 12/26/12 at 11:00am
BTW - I think the live singing only worked "kinda". I think for Hathaway, Barks and Tveit it was magical.

For Jackman, Crowe and even Redmayne (I found his specific singing face very distracting for some reason, though his voice was great), it was not as successful (IMO only).
<---------- No kids, no man, but I have some great pussies! And, If you're lucky, you too can call me Your Sassy Hagness.