Genre: Musical drama
Running Time: 160 minutes
Director: Tom Hooper
Cast: Anne Hathaway, Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Amanda Seyfried, Sacha Baron Cohen and Helena Bonham Carter
Synopsis: “An adaptation of the successful stage musical based on Victor Hugo’s classic novel set in 19th-century France, in which a paroled prisoner named Jean Valjean seeks redemption” (UIP).
Verdict: Many might feel this film is little too long (2 hours 40 minutes)… but the truth is it’s way too short. It only feels long because this adaptation does not do the original novel enough justice. Very strong acting and singing performance by most of the actors, particularly Anne Hathaway, who probably deserves a Best Supporting Actress Award nomination in the coming Oscars. Russell Crowe is, perhaps, the only odd one in the picture. But all that don’t matter because the film itself is just too rushed. Especially Act 1 (before the war), which fails MISERABLY to develop protagonist Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman) and antagonist Javert (Crowe). And the music, too, becomes annoying when there’s never a break in between songs, seemingly forcing every number into the movie without space given for viewers to process the tragedies and be engaged emotionally. In short, I just didn’t feel it. Maybe the real deal stage musical is way better, or maybe Les Misérables was never meant to be a musical.
Second opinion: “Too long, too draggy; at times when I felt like crying, it just moved on to the next scene too quickly” (Iris Loong).
How to pronounce Les Miserables in French? Lay Mee-say-har-bla.
Best scene: Anne Hathaway‘s powerful “I Dreamed A Dream” performance as Fantine. This is the only scene in the entire film that I was moved and completely impressed with. I’m sure the musical critics and Susan Boyle (who sang her own interpretation of the song that made her a star today) would agree that even though the film sucks, nothing should be taken away from Hathaway’s brilliant performance. She killed it.
Rating: 2.5 / 5