Saturday, December 29, 2012

Les Miz Movie Rambling

I'm fine; the bullet bounced off my corset.

So the Les Miserables movie musical finally came out, and to deservedly mixed reviews. The songs were pretty chopped up (most noticeable and damaging in "Confrontation," "Master of the House," "Look Down," "Plumet Attack," and "One Day More," in my opinion), but the sets looked great. Honestly, there was never any way crowds weren't going to come out en masse for this, and it was perfect for a Christmas pastime. Was it an instant classic? No. Did I cry? Yes. Multiple times? Yes.

Should have gotten Neil Patrick Harris and Jason Segel to coach this scene.

To get this out of the way: yes, Anne Hathaway was good. I wasn't in the "Anne Hathaway = best Catwoman ever!" camp, but man, did she give a great performance here. While I agree with a lot of Mick LaSalle's criticism regarding what happens when they make the showstopping songs intimate and whispered, I disagree with what he says about Hathaway's "I Dreamed a Dream." When she got to "but there are dreams that cannot be,/ and there are storms we cannot weather," you could hear the entire theater scrounging around for their Kleenex.

I thought Samantha Barks's "On My Own" was near perfect: belted, passionate...and still on a scale that worked for the film. But then, girl knows what she's doing. (I think the grit that Lea Salonga brings to Eponine still makes hers my favorite, though.) BTW, love this quotation from Barks from this interview: "I can't believe I actually spat in Ali G's face!"

When Eponine says "don't rob the house," don't rob the fucking house.

I love ethereal siren/angel/ghost-creature Amanda Seyfried, but there's not much to do with the role of Cosette. Ditto for ultimate trustafarian Marius. I told my mom immediately after the movie ended that I thought Eddie Redmayne sounded like Kermit, and she thought I was crazy. All the reviews seemed to love him, and I thought maybe I was just biased, but then...validation!

Congrats to Mrs. Lovett for finding a husband who's far more cheery than Sweeney Todd yet has the exact same morals and fashion sense. Seriously, never eat anything Helena Bonham Carter has cooked.

One day Tim Burton is going to wake and find that Helena Bonham Carter, Sacha Baron Cohen, Alan Rickman, and Johnny Depp have all left him for Tom Hooper.

When Javert started throwing punches at the ABC guys, all I could think was, "fightin' 'round the world!"

Sure, Tugger could have saved him from the Seine, but we
know how Tugger feels about Russell Crowe's singing.

Javert putting the medal on Gavroche's corpse was sort of maudlin and didn't really feel true to where his character was at the point (still cried, though). It also annoyed me a little bit since Eponine's corpse was right there, and in the novel she's the dead person he recognizes in a quick flash of humanity, and hey, if you're going to go back to the book and have Fantine's teeth ripped out... But I guess in the context of the musical/movie Javert and Eponine haven't really had any interaction, while Javert and Gavroche have.

Even with Hugo's lengthy history of the Parisian sewers and ruminations on how much it blows to drown in poop, I was somehow not prepared for the OH MY GOD THEY'RE IN POOP scene where Valjean rescues Marius. Valjean needs a "world's best dad" mug, 'cause carrying your daughter's boyfriend through rivers of poop to get him to safety is really above and beyond.

As annoying as I find the Marius/Cosette nuptials, I loved in the novel how Marius's grandpa and Valjean get so, so, so into wedding planning. If Marius's grandpa had grabbed Cosette's hands and squealed, "DRESS SHOPPING!!!" it would have taken the movie into Mamma Mia! territory, but it also would have been pretty true to the book.

Joker and Harley Quinn's biggest rivals at Villain Prom.

Yeah, they're terrible people, but when Thenardier led his wife away by the hand after they were kicked out of the rich kids wedding, it made me sad to think that in the novel, Madame Thenardier has died in prison by that scene.

Eponine's part in the "Come to Me" reprise was axed. What gives? I mean, yeah, it's kind of weird for a dying man to be visited by the spirit of the girl who had a crush on his son-in-law, but still.

Heaven = being in an Occupy Paris camp? Forever? I hope they get to stroll around the Luxembourg and have some pain au chocolat at some point.

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