Code Poetry
and Text Adventures

by catid posted (>30 days ago) 8:23pm Tue. Dec 25th 2012 PST
Okay straight off this is a great movie!

Unlike what you may expect almost ALL of the actors can sing.  Not having to project might have helped with this.  But the cool thing is, they can sing *and* they can act at the SAME TIME.  Like they're not just beautiful to listen to but you can follow the evolution of their thoughts by watching their facial features change.  This is some seriously good acting.  95% of the time.

Expect to be crying (on the inside guys) when Fontine laments her fate in the brothel. It's so moving you'll remember it right through the end of the film, and it's just in the first 30 minutes.

Wish I could say the same about Javert.

The director, Tom Hooper, took some serious risks that really paid off.  He used dramatically dim lighting, and really narrow focus on the actors.  It was like watching an expert tight-rope walker pull off a stunt at 100 feet without a net.  I only saw two places in the whole film where the actor's nose went even slightly out of focus despite the very narrow depth of field (DOF).  This was great for the monologues though it felt slightly overused for other parts of the film.  The director also called for shaky cam instead of smooth camera movements in almost every scene, which is much harder to get right and was actually downright distracting at times, but hey -- they didn't mess it up so I can't complain.

So why was Russell Crowe allowed in this movie?  I mean he can't sing to save his life.

I don't know.  And what the hell was that terrible lettuce-crunching sound when he hit the water under the bridge?  Couldn't they just show his lifeless body floating along.. Anyway, I had a great time and the audience was clapping by the end.  Mainly because Javert stopped singing after he got lettuced, perhaps, but still much more clapping than at the Hobbit, where people were mainly going: "Wut?  Eagles?  Whyyyy..."

You should go see Les Miserables.  It's very faithful to the recent stage production and the book, and Samantha Barks (Eponine) was in the stage production on broadway so I hear, though she was totally upstaged by Anne Hathaway.