Tom Hooper’s adaption of Les Miserables is marvelous. He captures a wonderful portrait of the French Revolution. Overall, the way this film affects you is quite a revelation. Throughout the very long 157 minute film, Les Miserables makes you cry, laugh and beg for more. The film stars Anne Hathaway, Russell Crowe, Hugh Jackman, Amanda Seyfried, Helena Bonham Carter, Sacha Baron Cohen, Eddie Redymane and Samantha Barks. Tom Hooper, directs this film so effortlessly that it hurts. Every musical number is shot with such care and none of them are similar. His choice to film the singing live and not pre-recorded is genius on so many levels. And most of the vocals done on screen, truly impress. The performances in the film are mainly breathtaking and feel so real.
The performances are mesmerizing. Anne Hathaway as Fantine steals the 1st Act like nobody’s business. She is most likely to win Best Supporting Actress at the upcoming Oscars. I really would not bet against her. It is seriously her award to win. Hugh Jackman demands the screen, the entire time. He can do no wrong. He should also expect a nomination come January 10th. Sacha Baron Cohen & Helena Bonham Carter, are really good in the film. They are the only “comedic” relief in the film. And what they do best is what they show in this film. So their performances didn’t really surprise me. They still were good though. Samantha Barks & Aaron Tveit broadway’d the movie up as Eponine and Enjorlas. They sell their performances completely and do their characters justice. Amanda Seyfried gives her BEST performance to date as Cosette. Seyfried has really evolved as an actress.
Her and Hathaway should be nominated for Best Supporting Actress. Although Seyfried will likely miss out, she should be happy (and I am happy) that she made the cast in the 1st place. Eddie Redymane as Marius, is quite marvelous. The raves for acting do halt. Russell Crowe does not fit the bill as Javert. He struggles with his singing. But he tries hard. All the stars had an earpiece that played their parts in their ears, which really helped their performances. They also didn’t pre-record any performances, which was honestly a breath of fresh air.
The direction in this film is killer and every shot tells a different story. I appreciated every frame of this film. I was blow away by the commitment to the storytelling. Yes, the movie is 99.99% singing dialogue. I love musicals but this movie took it to another level. I’m in awe of this film. And more musicals should be made like this. Overall, I only have negatives about the acting choice of Mr. Russell Crowe. This film should be in good hands when Oscar nominations are announced on January 10th, 2013. It is also doing well with the Billboard Soundtrack Chart and it is slowly climbing the Billboard Top 200. Also, it has banked 60+ million in U.S. box office sales. So this film isn’t done yet and there is no shock there.
My Grade For Les Miserables: 10/10 (Ranked 2nd On My Top 10 Of 2012)