I just got home from watching Les Miserables and I loved every minute of it. Though, it’s a secret. I’m supposed to watch it with my bestfriends but I just couldn’t wait. I wouldn’t mind watching it again, though. (If in case you chanced upon reading this, Liz… mianhe! I’m really sorry but you have to understand that I’ve waited for this since it was initially announced. 🙇)
I know that for many fans out there you would find a lot to criticize. Unfortunately, I’m too in love with the story, the music and the actors that I can’t hardly care if there were any imperfections.
The story is, of course, a classic. I read it in highschool and it marked a special place in my heart. It was gut wrenching to read. My heart went out to Jean Valjean at every page of the book. It was aptly called Les Miserables for all the hardships that the characters had to go through. The injustice, the discrimination, slavery. In that period of time, if you’re not of noble birth, you’d be a slave to nobility. People were dying, living like scums, poor and hungry. I never imagined it until I saw the films depicting that period of time. And this one is of no exception. Victor Hugo is simply a literary genius.
Then there is the music. We are all aware of Lea Salonga’s version of On My Own. It was supremely one of my ultimate favorites. But I heard the whole of it when I bought the DVD copy of it’s 25th anniversary concert. My spine was tingling and the hairs on my back were rising as I watched and listened to their singing. All right, dear critics, I will give this one to you. The singing was not at par with the original, however, I still love them. Let’s cut them some slack. As much as I love Samantha Bark’s version, Lea Salonga is still up the bar for me. I haven’t heard the whole original cast version yet, but compared with the concert I watched, it wouldn’t satisfy the enthusiasts out there. Also, my bestfriend assured me that the original cast version was far even better so I don’t know if she’ll be criticizing this part when she finally sees the film. The same can be said of Anne Hathaway’s I Dreamed a Dream. When Lea sang it, I was holding my breath the entire time. Can’t imagine having to see the actual play, which unfortunately, is a remote possibility for me. I was thinking earlier how I appreciate these classics being brought from theater to film because finally we can watch them. Seeing Rent and Phantom of the Opera was like a dream and now, there’s Les Miserables and I think it was the best of them all. Oh, now I’m wishing for Wicked! I know that Oz is coming soon but it’s the wizard’s tale. I want Elphaba’s Wicked.
Anyway, as for the actors and the acting, I wish there is something else I can say besides praise. But like I said, I can’t think of anything negative to say. I’ve got a huge crush on Hugh Jackman and when I read that he’s playing the part, I was excited! I think I’ve just fallen in love with him all over again and even more so. Russell Crowe was a huge surprise for me. I know that Hugh Jackman has theater background but I didn’t know anything about Russell Crowe. I have to admit that he’s a really good actor but he’s not one of my favorites. I didn’t know he could sing that well or even sing at all. Goodness! As for Anne Hathaway, she really deserved that Best Supporting Actress. She was great! I really liked her before, during her Disney films. Then I sort of got tired of her. Then, she went ahead and became Fantine and I think I love her now. Then there is Amanda Seyfried. My friends didn’t like her and her singing in Mamma Mia. But I do! I think I’ve got some girl crush on her. So when I heard that she’s going to be Cossette, I couldn’t be any happier. I was also happy that Samantha Barks gets to play Eponine as well. I saw her first in the 25th anniversary concert and sang Eponine’s part even then. I really like her too. So pretty and with such a talented voice. I was afraid that the actors might overshadow their characters. After all, they were a star studded cast. But I’m glad that they were such good actors that I didn’t think of Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe and Anne Hathaway. I really did see them as their characters Jean Valjean, Javert and Fantine. In the first part of the film when they were singing Look Down, I hardly recognized Hugh Jackman.
I don’t think I would be able to stop thinking about this film in the near future. I can’t wait to watch this again and I’d definitely be first in line when the DVD is out. I guess I’ll listen to the soundtrack now. Too bad they only put few select songs in the OST. But it will have to settle for now. When I have the money, I’ll definitely get a copy of the full West End original cast version and the Broadway version.