‘Les Miserables’ stars the always amazing Liam Neeson (Shindler’s List, Taken) as Jean Valjean, Geoffrey Rush (Pirates of the Caribbean movies) as Javert, Uma Thurman (Kill Bill movies) as Fantine, and Claire Danes (Romeo and Juliet) as Cosette.
The story follows Jean Valjean as he is paroled from jail. He had been in jail for 19 years for stealing a loaf or two of bread. On his journey no one will shelter him expect an elderly priest and his sister. Valjean steals some silverware and runs off, but he’s captured and brought back to the priest’s house. The priest says that he gave the man the silverware and to let him go (which I still don’t understand completely). They do and leave; the priest tells Valjean to become a great man and to start over. Valjean does. The story follows him on his road to complete redemption and his increasing sense of compassion towards those around him. Sooner or later he even becomes a mayor of a little town.
I liked this movie, it was very well done. I loved the movie version of Valjean better than the book version. The book version was just an evil man to begin with, he had no compassion whatsoever and I doubt that he would’ve changed that much. It wasn’t a believable change; however in the movie you can see a little bit more kindness in him, so the sudden change was very believable.
The acting was decent, sometimes a little melodramatic though (especially Uma Thurman’s death scene). I’m very happy that they had casted Liam Neeson as Valjean; I don’t think the movie would’ve been as good without him. He made the movie.
I hated some of the dialogue and the melodramatic moments. I also hated how they skipped over a lot of Valjean’s redemption journey. For ten minutes, Valjean’s an evil convict and then suddenly it skips a whole bunch of time and now he’s a great, rich, and kind mayor. How did he get there? If you haven’t read the book you wouldn’t know. I think they should’ve focused more on the transition stages of his redemption. I also wasn't a fan of how they shot some of the scenes.
All-in-all it was very entertaining to watch after you read the book. For those who haven’t read the book, should read it before they watch this film. I liked the movie and I will probably watch it a few more times in future. However, I hate when movies think that every viewer has read the book. I shall grant this movie, 2 stars.
Never seen the movie, but I was lucky enough to be able to see it performed this past December. It was awesome. But I think that if I had read the book it would have heightened my understanding of the play.
Ooooh I would love to see the play!
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