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Les Miserables (2012)

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12-30-2012, 07:43 PM
  #51
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Originally Posted by Richie10 View Post
I just hate it when people, who have zero prior experience with theater or musicals, trash something like this for being "silly" when they very clearly just plain don't get it. It's fine if this kind of thing isn't your cup of tea. It's fine if you don't understand the whole musical thing in general. But don't trash it.

I hate to sound high brow here but American culture has gotten remarkably comfortable with such banal and vapid experiences in film. Jackass 3D was #1 for how many weeks? A movie that featured flying dildos in slow motion.

But something rich in culture and art and theatricality like Les Mis comes along and it gets trashed. Hilarious.
If they ever release Jackass- The Musical, Im there.

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12-30-2012, 08:51 PM
  #52
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Originally Posted by Richie10 View Post
This is simply one of those films where you either get it or you don't. Sing-through musicals aren't really popular, on stage or in film, anymore for a reason.
I don't think it is that simple.

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If you have any love whatsoever for theatre and song, I don't see how you dislike this film. Even if you're ambivalent toward both, any fan of acting can appreciate Hathaway's turn as Fantine and Jackman as Jean Valjean.
I dislike it not because of a lack of love for theatre and song, but because I think it was too often a poorly directed movie. I do appreciate Hathaway's performance, but I thought Jackman was competent, no more.

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I really like the way Hooper directed this. Instead of later studio recording the songs and dubbing them into acted scenes, he had his actors singing live with only a keyboard on set to keep the melody. He dubbed in the orchestra AFTER the fact, which is completely opposite of the traditional way to film musicals. The result was a tremendous increase in the emotional impact of the acting itself, due to the more natural feel of the scenes and songs. Pretty brilliant.
I will concede that he got that right. But during too many musical numbers, Hooper directed with no imagination. Way too many close-ups, way too much hand-held camera work, and the key action scene near the end is poorly edited. I wasn't even sure whose funeral procession we were watching at the start of that act.

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Originally Posted by Richie10 View Post
I just hate it when people, who have zero prior experience with theater or musicals, trash something like this for being "silly" when they very clearly just plain don't get it. It's fine if this kind of thing isn't your cup of tea. It's fine if you don't understand the whole musical thing in general. But don't trash it.
I agree. But my point would be, from a film perspective, as opposed to a theatre or song standpoint, there are major reasons to criticize it.

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I hate to sound high brow here but American culture has gotten remarkably comfortable with such banal and vapid experiences in film. Jackass 3D was #1 for how many weeks? A movie that featured flying dildos in slow motion.

But something rich in culture and art and theatricality like Les Mis comes along and it gets trashed. Hilarious.
I agree with some of this, too. But just because something is seemingly cultural and artistic, it still shouldn't get a get-out-of-jail-free card. It also seems to me that this argument is often put forward to defend works that are dreary and pretentious, like we all must learn to eat our spinach. I didn't find the film pretentious but I did find it exceptionally dreary. The film, of course, requires a great dose of dreariness and squalor, but this would be another instance in which I found Hooper not up to the task of dealing with the complexities that he was facing.

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It's fine if you found something within the framework of the film itself that you didn't like. But you also can't approach it like any other film. It's a musical, so editing, camerawork, etc. is naturally different.
Again, no quarrel with this. Where we part ways is with how well that editing, camerawork, casting, and so on, were done.

I've rented Oliver! for tonight. It will be very different experience obviously, but I want to see how Carol Reed handles a similarly impoverished milieu.

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12-30-2012, 09:35 PM
  #53
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Sounds like Moulin Rouge.
That was at least worthy of watching once, just for the use of modern songs in that setting. Wouldn't watch it again though.

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12-30-2012, 09:36 PM
  #54
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I feel as though the critiques on this so far are directorial more than anything, along with the miscasting of Crowe.

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12-31-2012, 06:13 AM
  #55
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Crowe's voice itself kind of grew on me, but he's simply not the right choice for Javert.

It was kind of hysterical when you go to the students for the first time and they are blowing their Hollywood counterparts off the screen.

I will say, in the well scene there's something about Jackman says "don't be afraid of me, show me where you live" that cracked my entire row up. Myself included.


Last edited by Jill Sandwich: 12-31-2012 at 07:39 AM.
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12-31-2012, 01:45 PM
  #56
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I liked the movie as a whole...but thought that Crowe might have earned himself a RAZZIE nomination for his singing (unfortunately due to a bad casting job than anything else)... He was just too weak for Javert...almost weaker than the last tea I got at Starbucks... Other than that...I thought it was pretty much flawless...

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12-31-2012, 01:47 PM
  #57
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Originally Posted by Zenith View Post
Sounds like Moulin Rouge.
At least MR was miles better than MAMMA MIA...

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12-31-2012, 07:35 PM
  #58
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Oliver! turned out to be an interesting comparison in terms of directorial technique.

1968's Oliver! and Les Miserables have little in common except an impoverished setting. However, Carol Reed’s method of directing Oliver!, which is set among the destitute of London in 1837 (Les Mis takes place in Paris in 1815), is far more effective and much less oppressive than Hooper’s approach in Les Miserables. Reed uses no handheld camera work of any kind; judiciously employs close-ups with very few used during actual songs; opts for fluid but not flashy camera movement; uses lighting in a more varied way; has a broader palette of colour; and actually shoots the odd outdoor scene in sunlight (or the studio equivalent), something that occurs so seldom in British working class movies that it has become laughable. His use of close ups was especially well done. We didn't drown in them. On all of these points, however, Hooper seems to have lacked either the necessary imagination or the technique to get his movie out of the visual ruts he quickly got his camera into.

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12-31-2012, 08:46 PM
  #59
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I enjoyed the handheld camerwork. I thought it added a great element of vulnerability and intimacy to certain scenes, most notably Fantine's I Dreamed a Dream and Marius's Empty Chairs.

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12-31-2012, 10:01 PM
  #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RAZZIE King View Post
I liked the movie as a whole...but thought that Crowe might have earned himself a RAZZIE nomination for his singing (unfortunately due to a bad casting job than anything else)... He was just too weak for Javert...almost weaker than the last tea I got at Starbucks... Other than that...I thought it was pretty much flawless...
Well I wouldn't say it was Razzie-worthy, but he was horribly miscast as a singer.

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12-31-2012, 11:47 PM
  #61
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Well I wouldn't say it was Razzie-worthy, but he was horribly miscast as a singer.
He might get a fluke vote or two in the pre-RAZZIE balloting due to the miscasting...but I don't think it's going to be enough to get him in the final cuts to five nominations... Besides...I already have my frontrunner picked and three alternates (and this was from movies I've reviewed from January to September)...

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01-01-2013, 08:31 AM
  #62
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Originally Posted by RAZZIE King View Post
He might get a fluke vote or two in the pre-RAZZIE balloting due to the miscasting...but I don't think it's going to be enough to get him in the final cuts to five nominations... Besides...I already have my frontrunner picked and three alternates (and this was from movies I've reviewed from January to September)...
Would Crowe's performance in The Man with the Iron Fists be more of a contender for a RAZZIE, do you think? (I haven't seen it, but the movie sounds really terrible). I actually think he did an adequate job in Les Mis; I'd give the error to the casting director.

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01-02-2013, 04:36 PM
  #63
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Yeah, nothing against Crowe, but I didn't really see him as the character they were portraying. He is a great actor, but this just wasn't a role that fit him quite right.

That said, I enjoyed his singing well enough. Wasn't as powerful as Jackman or Hathaway, but still enjoyable. My girlfriend thought he was putrid to begin with.

And I also thought the "show me where you live" line was hysterical.

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01-03-2013, 05:58 PM
  #64
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And I also thought the "show me where you live" line was hysterical.
And then the scene in "In My Life", where Valjean goes into Cosette's room with his shirt half-buttoned up.

"Cosette, you're such a lonely child"


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01-03-2013, 09:50 PM
  #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kihei View Post
Would Crowe's performance in The Man with the Iron Fists be more of a contender for a RAZZIE, do you think? (I haven't seen it, but the movie sounds really terrible). I actually think he did an adequate job in Les Mis; I'd give the error to the casting director.
Crowe was silly, but at least he knew it. He was one of the only salvageable parts of that movie.

On the other hand, it wouldn't surprise me at all to see the RZA get nominated (for his acting).

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01-06-2013, 01:34 AM
  #66
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Just saw this tonight. Loved every minute of it.

And ohmygod I love Amanda Seyfried.

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01-12-2013, 10:22 PM
  #67
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LOL'd at this...


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01-31-2013, 02:22 AM
  #68
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I'm just going to throw this out there. I am not a big musical person, but this is one of my favorite films ever.

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