Little known fact about me- I was obsessed with the musical Les Mis as a child.
All kids have their "thing." For some it might be Disney. A certain princess. A certain storybook character.
For me, it was Les Mis. I had almost every song memorized from start to finish by the age of 8.
I saw the musical at least 4 times. Sooooo good. I had the soundtrack first on tape, then on CD.
I saw the 1998 movie multiple times. Loved it.
So, of course I went to see the new one right after it came out.
When I read that the new Les Mis movie had a 70% on the tomato meter, I wasn't very surprised.
Yes, you should go see it. There, it's decided. You'll be entertained. It is beautiful. The end will make you cry, and all of the brilliant lines from the book are still packed in there, in all their glorious irony.
But be aware that while it has the same music, it is not the musical. Several of the opening songs were cruelly botched. Anne Hathaway as Fantine, I felt, did not reach her full potential here.
"At the heart of the "Les Misérables" movie was a good idea that just didn't work out this time. The idea was that the actors should sing their songs live on camera." -Mick LaSalle, The San Francisco Chronicle
A little too "trying to be raw" for me. Eponine, played by the young Samantha Barks, ruins the mood with her fake smiles. Cosette turned out to be a one-dimensional character.... there wasn't enough character-building to even mention.
and WHAT IS THE HYPE ABOUT HUGH JACKMAN?! He sounds like he needs to drink some water.
In all seriousness. I actually feel like Hugh Jackman is not a good Jean Valjean. This was a miscast in my book. Yes I'm aware of the awards. He has a few good moments... but give me LIAM NEESON any day. (Or perhaps Russell Crowe and Hugh Jackman should have switched characters). I felt the casting was off with Marius as well. Sadly.
All of that said, I recommend it.
Yes, go see it. I mean, it's Les Mis. So go see it.
But I give it a 68%.
Next up, to read the book.... (ok maybe not next. I should give myself a break from this one for a while. I feel stressed out just thinking about that).