Les Miserables

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  Case on Sat Dec 15, 2012 4:08 am

I think I'd like Hooper to adapt Schonberg and Boublil's works for the screen.
All of them. Sung live on set, of course.
From La Révolution Française ( Eddie Redmayne as Charles Gauthier and Samantha Barks as Isabelle de Montmorency, please!) to Marguerite.


Random thought? Forget Hathaway as Judy. I want to see her play LuPone in a biopic. Mostly because it would mean getting to see her as Patti as Evita, Fantine, Reno Sweeney, Norma Desmond and Mama Rose. Pure heaven.
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Re: Les Miserables

Post  ulkis on Tue Dec 18, 2012 1:14 pm

http://www.lasexta.com/videos-online/sexta3/noticias/imagenes-excusivas-miserables_2012121800020.html

One Day More clip. And by clip, I mean the whole song. I really liked it and it assuaged some of the fears I was starting to get from viewing the other clips. The end of the song is a bit of a mess, but imo that part of it was always going to be.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  Grainne Mhaol on Tue Dec 18, 2012 2:30 pm

Maybe I'm wrong, but the clip seems to highlight the weakness of singing live. The fragmented nature of filming meant that actors had to sing their bits virtually unaccompanied, varying the tempo to suit the 'emotion' of the thing. Singers on stage have to harmonise and keep to an orchestra, not have the music and harmony decided by editing and post-production. It makes the whole thing seem very sterile. I'm beginning to feel like prerecording might have been the better option. Without the distraction of singing on set, they could concentrate on telling the visual story. From that clip, it's almost impossible to tell what's going on. It's not just the choppy as all hell editing, but the whole thing seems leeched of excitement or emotion. Maybe I'm being hyper-critical, but the end of 'One Day More' should make you want to grab a musket. Instead, the whole effect was rather underwhelming.
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Re: Les Miserables

Post  ulkis on Tue Dec 18, 2012 2:35 pm

From that clip, it's almost impossible to tell what's going on.

It is just the clip though. I'm sure when you watch the whole movie you know what goes on at this part. I've read the script so I know what's going on though.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  Grainne Mhaol on Tue Dec 18, 2012 3:01 pm

I've also read the script, so I know what's supposed to be going on, but it's still confusing.
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Re: Les Miserables

Post  CaroJC on Fri Dec 21, 2012 12:53 am

I liked it! That is a super awkward song to watch out of context, though, and I feel like it would always be more satisfying on stage with the marching and all, where it can really come together. All of the characters are soliloquizing so it is probably one of the more difficult numbers to make filmic. It was a little awkward to keep cutting to Hugh in the carriage to belt his "One day more!" I can't really picture a way it could be done better, though.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  laddical on Fri Dec 21, 2012 4:01 am

I try not to get nitpicky about particular staging choices and say, "I would have directed it thus..." too often, but in that case, I would have found a way to convey Valjean and Cossette moving without putting them in a carriage. I don't know the set up well enough to say how I would have changed it, but... yeah. Cutting back to Hugh, sitting there, hunched over in a carriage, is not the way to play that song.
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Re: Les Miserables

Post  Case on Fri Dec 21, 2012 11:11 pm

How was Hooper able to turn that awesomely fun and bombastic French sports arena musical back into the novel that I love?

The soundtrack is on tumblr.

(Eep. Sorry!)


Last edited by Case on Sat Dec 22, 2012 1:36 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Les Miserables

Post  ulkis on Sat Dec 22, 2012 1:22 am

Case, can you edit that? that tumblr specifically requested that it not be linked outside tumblr. thanks

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  Francie Nolan on Mon Dec 24, 2012 5:58 pm

ONE DAY MORE!

Sorry, I had to.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  whatthedeuce on Mon Dec 24, 2012 6:37 pm

I'd have been gravely disappointed if no one had said it, Francie Nolan.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  ulkis on Mon Dec 24, 2012 11:56 pm

Case wrote:How was Hooper able to turn that awesomely fun and bombastic French sports arena musical back into the novel that I love?

The soundtrack is on tumblr.

(Eep. Sorry!)

It's cool. I just don't want that site to get in trouble :)

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  punzy on Wed Dec 26, 2012 8:30 pm

Just got back from seeing this. I thought it was really well done all around. Javert's songs were softer/gentler than I like, but they were pretty good. And Anne Hathaway was great and did "I Dreamed a Dream" with both crying and belting, which was impressive. My Mom and sister didn't recognize Hugh Jackman in the prisoner scenes. And I cried. A lot.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  ulkis on Wed Dec 26, 2012 8:47 pm

I thought it was great. I pretty much liked all the changes, casting was good . . . I mean, there was nothing that I thought was a failure.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  Morning Angel on Wed Dec 26, 2012 10:18 pm

It was a symphony of sobs at the end in my theatre.

I liked it. It was an interesting choice I thought to have what could have been dialogue being sung. I am also not a fan of people who belt out every song so I generally enjoyed that they went more for an emotion-driven interpretation of songs rather than just seeing who can sing it loudest. I wasn't crazy though about the vibrato that Amanda Seyfried seemed to put into her singing. I didn't remember her singing like that in "Mamma Mia" so maybe she made a choice to place her voice that way, but it was kind of annoying.

My favourite interpretation was definitely "I Dreamed a Dream." I had goosebumps all over. I thought Anne Hathaway and Samantha Barks were particularly good.

Also, the guy who played Grantaire looked so much like Orlando Bloom but with dark hair. But it is not Orlando Bloom.
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Re: Les Miserables

Post  Francie Nolan on Thu Dec 27, 2012 10:35 pm

After reading some tepid reviews, I ended up loving it even more than I thought I would. Maybe the musical is just so ingrained in me that I was bound to love it, but I didn't see many of the flaws that I've read a lot of hand-wringing about.

I loved the staging of the finale--it makes so much more sense to have the bishop with Valjean and to have Eponine with the students. Also, Colm Wilkinson gets to be Valjean's spirit guide to the afterlife and how cool is that?

Russell Crowe's voice wasn't good, exactly, but better than I expected. In some weird way, the stilted singing works for Javert. Eddie Redmayne was terrific, and made me care a lot about Marius--"Empty Chairs" killed me. I kept picturing Nick Jonas in the part and giggling. I wasn't expecting Anne Hathaway to blow me away as much as she did, but wow, that was pretty amazing.

I want to see it again and again.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  QueenSix on Fri Dec 28, 2012 10:28 am

I am so mad that I am spoiled for this film. How can I see it now when I know exactly what happens to the characters?? And the worst part is I have only myself to blame because I saw the musical on stage in 1993 and I read the book in 1996. I DID THIS TO MYSELF!!! WHAT WAS I THINKING??!!

I must now post at length on FB, Tumblr and LJ about how I hate spoilers for this film and berate anyone who even mentions a song title. Because that is rational behaviour for a film based on a book and musical that has been out as long as Les Mis has been.

Now that the crazy is out of the way, it doesn't open here until January 11th. It's definitely one we'll see in the cinema though.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  whatthedeuce on Fri Dec 28, 2012 1:07 pm

Reading is EVIL, QueenSix. Did nobody send you the memo on that? DEATH TO SPOILERS!!!

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  CaroJC on Fri Dec 28, 2012 5:31 pm

Loved it! I think there is an inherent problem with movie musicals adapted from the stage in that the energy and excitement of seeing a show performed live is impossible to replicate in film so they are always going to feel a little less satisfying. I can't think of any movie musical that ever IMPROVED on a stage production.

I was nervous with the reviews, too, but thought it all worked. I really loved the swordfight during "The Confrontation." That was a great choice. The whole cast was excellent (wanted a little more from Crowe, but he didn't take me out of it). I thought the close-ups worked well, too. Les Miz is so emotional and a lot of the songs are just characters singing about how they feel about things so I thought that choice made a lot of sense for the soliloquies. Loved how they used "Do You Hear the People Sing?" as the barricades were going up.

A few minor things I didn't love: Sascha Baron Cohen's changing accent. Moving "On My Own" up (I thought this made Eponine's story feel a little rushed and her death didn't hit as hard).

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  blixie on Fri Dec 28, 2012 6:07 pm

I can't think of any movie musical that ever IMPROVED on a stage production.

I agree, I think that's why I thought the live Confrontation with Hugh/Russ, even with the cheesebagging, I kind of enjoyed more than the Confrontation in the film. There is a visceral aspect to live performance/orchestration.

Having said that, I thought it was very good, but I can't say it...transported me in the way even the cheesiest movie musicals can. It was somehow both more and less than I thought it would be, and I realized that for me, the singing on set had a lot of benefits, but I think it also meant that the soundtrack orchestration had to be *muted* which I think is unfortunate since, think of Gershwin in Manhattan, or Star Wars, a soundtrack can make up in movie musicals what they lack in that immediacy of being in person.

Still it was a wonderful time at the movies and I want to see it again. Anne and Hugh did not disappoint, Eddie Redmayn was wonderful, and little Gavroche and Collete won my heart.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  Gillian on Fri Dec 28, 2012 11:11 pm

CaroJC wrote:Moving "On My Own" up (I thought this made Eponine's story feel a little rushed and her death didn't hit as hard).
As someone who has never read the book, seen the show, or seen any of the movies, Eponine's story did feel rushed to me. I was honestly expecting to kind of hate her, solely because the version of "On My Own" I hear on the Broadway station on satellite radio drives me batshit insane, but I didn't feel like I got the chance to decide if I hated poor Eponine or not.
Spoiler:
She was there, she made googly eyes at a cute boy, she sang about it, and then she was dead.
There were plenty of scenes during the movie where I was like, "Okay, this can be shorter!", but I was expecting to see more of Eponine.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  ulkis on Sat Dec 29, 2012 12:03 am

I thought the close-ups worked well, too.

I was expecting to hate it, but I liked it. I think it worked better than Phantom's "walking around to disguise the fact that this is a solo" or Rent's "random mountain top scenery". I thought they should have backed out a little when it was a duet though, like during "A Heart Full of Love".

I think the reason they moved "On My Own" is they didn't want to interrupt the flow of the barricade sequence once that started.

I'm hoping Eddie Redmayne manages to snag a supporting actor nod.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  rivki8699 on Sat Dec 29, 2012 1:31 am

So I just saw this tonight, and overall I cried, I mouthed along with the words, and I loved all the women. But, and I feel I'm about to be stoned for this, I didn't like Hugh Jackman's singing. I went in expecting to hate Russel Crowe and be blown away by Jackman, but Crowe was fine (not good, but not terrible) and Jackman was bad. It was bordering on painful to listen to him. And I hated all the close-ups, there was just no sense of space at all, and it was weird to just be all up in the actors' faces for minutes on end. I mean, especially in Empty Chairs which is all about how Marius is all alone in a broken space that used to be full of his lively, and living, friends. He doesn't look alone when all you can see is an inch around his head. I thought all the chorus/group numbers were the best because they weren't all in close-up. All in all this just made me want to listen to the original broadway soundtrack on repeat for a while.
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Re: Les Miserables

Post  ulkis on Sat Dec 29, 2012 1:45 am

But, and I feel I'm about to be stoned for this, I didn't like Hugh Jackman's singing.


When I listened to clips I was dreading it but in the actual movie I thought he was good, with a few exceptions, like Bring Him Home. But yeah, while I think he did well, I'm not a huge fan of the sound of his voice. Pretty nasal.

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Re: Les Miserables

Post  queenofdenile on Sat Dec 29, 2012 2:34 am

Just got back from it. Overall, looooove. My heart swelled at all the right places and I held back the tears somehow. All of the barricade scenes, in particular, I thought were superb, and would not have changed a thing.

Highlights in terms of acting were Jackman and Hathaway (duh), the kids, and Eddie Redmayne HOLY FUCK. Where did he come from?! I knew he had a good reputation as an actor but I never knew he could sing like that. His rendition of "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables" is already my favorite version of that song. Listening to it again as I write this post.

Also, Aaron Tveit is hottt even in that ugly wig, and to my great disappointment I could not will Enjolras and Marius to make out using my mind powers.

Russell Crowe, get off my screen. I expected him to at least act the part well but I think he made one facial expression during the entire movie. The only scene that I thought he acted well was
Spoiler:
when Valjean released him at the barricades.
I listened to Quast's version of his biggest songs on the way home just to cleanse it from my brain.

Thenardiers were Thenardiers, so basically, meh.
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