Les Misérables

Les Misérables

(2012)

Fight, dream, hope, love.

Oscar-winning director Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech) brings the epic stage musical to the big screen with stars Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Eddie Redmayne, Amanda Seyfried, Helena Bonham Carter, Sacha Baron Cohen and Anne Hathaway in an Oscar-winning performance. Unique for screen musicals, the cast performed the songs live in front of the camera with the orchestra's score inserted after (traditionally, the cast would record all the songs and mime them on set).... More

Based on the 1862 novel by Victor Hugo, the story follows the redemption of ex-prisoner Jean Valjean (Jackman) against the backdrop of the Paris Uprising of 1832. Jailed for stealing a loaf of bread, Valjean is hunted by ruthless policeman Javert (Crowe) since he broke his parole. Assuming a new identity, Valjean's life is changed forever after agreeing to care for factory worker Fantine's (Hathaway) young daughter Cosette (Seyfried). Cohen and Carter play innkeepers Monsieur and Madame Thénardier.Hide

Flicks Review

Much has been made of the naturalistic approach to this greatest hits musical with actors singing live to camera, but let’s face it, the beauty of musical theatre is its ridiculousness – the soul-warming idea that there will be a song for every emotion, a dance step for each skip of the heart. Making a musical more realistic just amplifies that silliness.... More

Tom Hooper has enlisted a brilliant cast to bring Les Misérables to screen. The bravura performance (and dibs on best supporting actress Oscar) go to Anne Hathaway for an I Dreamed a Dream that will yank even more heart strings than Susan Boyle’s version. A shadowy close-up on Hathaway’s woeful, doe-eyed Fantine is the only cinematic accompaniment needed for such masterful delivery. But Hooper could have mixed it up a bit more as the film leafs through its lengthy repertoire. Teary close-ups follow teary close-ups whether it’s blubbery musical geek-cum-heartthrob Hugh Jackman suffering through his internal moral battles or the anguished moistened cheekbones of our hero Marius (Redmayne) as he fights for love and country.

The actors do an admirable job of carrying their tunes (with one glaring exception – here’s looking at you big Russ) but how about some lively choreography to ignite the film with the spirit that has captivated millions on stage? There’s ample space for artistic risk-taking in this new medium. What would a director like (gasp!) Baz Luhrmann have done with it? Les Mis entertains most when it goes for flamboyant. Highlights are the hilarious romping of Sacha Baron Cohen and Helena Bonham Carter as the dastardly innkeepers, the rousing mass chorus flag-waving scenes, and my favourite, ballsy street urchin Gavroche whose cheeky anthem Little People is cut cruelly short.

The lavish, formidable production will delight fans but I doubt the uninitiated will be won over the barricade.Hide


The Peoples' Reviews

Average ratings from 11 ratings, 11 reviews
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BY Zamm superstar

I felt miserable all thorugh out the film, but only because the cast were great, I felt them. Hugh Jackman should have won the OSCARS here (Daniel Day Lewis did for Lincoln). Ann Hathaway blew me away - truly amazing! :D I wasn't very much impress with Russel Crowe's. He wasn't bad with his acting but I was just not feeling what he was singing. Anyway, I loved the movie -overall. If you want to see if you can cry over a movie, watch this.


BY GMB grader

This is a wonderful adaptation of the musical and original story. Some parts missed in the musical or books have been brought back, not altering the story but making it more complete. The singing from some of the actors is marginal, but especially the younger cast have superb singing voices, for the movie it works great but I will not be buying the soundtrack. Alas the moive is a tad on the long side but apart from that is well worth a watch.


BY JR grader

would not of thought that such a thing could be humanly possible but it is. After all I do not count myself as a massive musical fan or a fan of the original source being either the book or the musical. Having nether seen the musical or read the book, I wasn't sure as what to think about the story as what I had heard was mainly synopsis from iMDB or other such websites.

I was quite surprised at how detailed the story actually was. Which is nice considering at what low expectations I had of the... More story on a whole.

The film stands apart from the most modern film musical with the largely incredible performances from the cast. Which rest on the shoulders of an incredible Hugh Jackman. But the supporting characters of the film have some quite incredible performances. Most namely Eddie Remane and the incredible Anne Hathaway.

Tom Hooper show's what a talented director he truly is. Demanding incredible performance's from all of the cast. Which is what he gets no question. But also the way in which he shoot's this film. From the long close up's he uses to the incredible swooping shoots that shows just how amazing the spectacle of Les Miz truly is.

All in all. I was not expecting to like this film as much as did. But came out of it with a tear to my eye but also throughly enjoying this film.Hide


BY sooz56 nobody

I thought Hugh Jackman and Russell put on a wonderful performance, as did all the cast. I enjoyed it better than on the live stage as I understood the story line. My only gripe was that nearly all the main actors/singers had pristine white veneered teeth...not sure that dentists would have been high priority in that era, especially one who had just served 19 years in prison! This aside, excellant film and felt like clapping at times.


BY Brian1 superstar

but not up to the stage show.


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The Press Reviews

  • Occasionally, like its characters, ragged around the edges, this nevertheless rings with all the emotion and power of the source and provides a new model for the movie musical. Full Review

  • By the end, you feel like a piñata on the dancefloor: empty, in bits, the victim of prolonged assault by killer pipes. Full Review

  • There are large, emotionally susceptible segments of the population ready to swallow this sort of thing, but that doesn't mean it's good. Full Review

  • Will send the devoted home happy and likely demonstrate to the few uninitiated what all the fuss is about. Full Review

  • The squalor and upheaval of early 19th-century France are conveyed with a vividness that would have made Victor Hugo proud, heightened by the raw, hungry intensity of the actors' live oncamera vocals. Full Review

  • Jackman is performing in a drama, Crowe on his concert stage, and Hathaway alone in her room. It's a collection of performances rather than a story. Full Review

  • By the grand finale, when tout le monde is waving the French tricolor in victory, you may instead be raising the white flag in exhausted defeat. Full Review

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