Saturday, January 5, 2013

Les Misérables

My first film of the year.

In cases like Les Misérables, of an adaptation of sorts, you fall in this pattern of stating where you stand in it. And I am not only starting that way, but also acknowledging it at the same time! It’s pretty tiring! Anyway, I haven’t heard of Les Misérables until a few months ago, I haven’t seen the play, nor didn’t know anything about the story and the novel. But I did end up knowing pretty much everything about the film, that a lot of gay men already loved the play, while others don’t, that there’s a lot of love to the film from women and straight men too. So above all, I was extremely curious about this film, curious to see Anne Hathaway ‘Oscar’ winning performance and the live singing.
These are always difficult times to watch films like Les Miz because of the heavy talk behind it.
I think this is a great epic film. I was impressed by its magnitude, by the work done by everyone in the art department, by the sound work, both in editing, mixing and whatever other levels. I was especially in awe by the acting. I think they all deserve their praise because it is truly an amazing thing to watch. There were some beautifully singed moments, they devoted themselves to these characters and you can see that through their performances. They are remarkable. I wasn’t in anyway disturbed by the camera movements and scales, the close ups became part of the film. It was fascinating to watch Anne Hathaway singing I Dreamed a Dream in one sequence (even though there was a moment where you could see her white teeth, oh I had to mention this!). This was the moment I was the most affected by, I become more inside the film, when I finally felt something I guess. Hugh Jackman transcends in this film. I think Russell Crowe was a fit choice, playing the tough guy, and I think he’s really good too, but I understand the other critics towards him, I would say that it’s his voice that doesn’t really fit with the rest. If people want to give Oscars to these guys then give them the awards. I don’t really care. 

So I’ve been mentioning the highlights of this film, but what I’m going to say next may not make much sense, but even though I was in some ways amazed by this film I wasn’t amazed by its story. I am not fluent in the French History but I don’t think this story is that magnificent and significant and not that definable in some parts.  
It’s impressive how my friend kept crying compulsively throughout the entire film, even though she had already seen the play. It’s impressive (and unpleasant?) how I heard people actually singing along full of passion. The story is deeply dramatic, so much that I didn’t even felt like smiling with the comic timing from the Thénardier family. I was also really focused trying to find the themes of this film, trying to find my positions in the story and the character’s own motives. Because I’m not even going to mention the novel and such, first I never read it and second what’s the matter it’s what’s in this film. But really, the story isn’t that great is it? I think that the intricacies about this story, I know they must exist, don’t transcend significantly in this film, but at the same time, it is that important for the film? I really don’t know, although it probably should. What I know is that my friend cried, so much I could hear the sniffing, the sobbing, and the chair shaking…I didn't share a tear.
My question about Les Miz has to be, to the ones who love it so deeply, who went to see the play eight times, why they love it so much, why it is so special? I know that in many ways this can be a really silly question.

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