Written April 30, 2016
Les Miserables is a most poignant story. The demand for vocal acuity in this film is imperative for the viewer to remain engaged and feel the emotional valeur. The performances were great, unfortunately, I found Crowe's inability to sing to distract me from the story as well as detach myself from feeling any sympathy for this character. Jackman's vocals were only slightly better that of Crowe's, and if these two characters were casted by two men that have the ability to sing, I would have enjoyed the movie that much more.
As for Hathaway, her performance brought tears to my eyes - she is absolutely lovely.
In fact, all other characters sang wonderfully and with such passion - I was enthralled
Aside from the poor singing by both Crowe and Jackman, the movie is wonderful and entertaining but I will not watch it again because of these two actors - I will instead read the book by Victor Hugo.
Written January 25, 2015
Hathaway has really come along as an actress and she's gorgeous. The rest is so-so... I've been to a fair number of live musicals, but I had a difficult time sitting through this movie. Some performances were cringe-worthy and lackluster.
Written October 09, 2015
An amazing performance by all - the raw emotion that was displayed in this film brought such a credibility to the delivery of the story, it's characters and the inner values of the story. Most striking is the message of Val Jean's steadfastness to remember the grace he received and to pay that grace forward, replacing the bitterness and hate. It isn't easy to watch - times during that period were desperate and they don't sugar coat that - but sometimes we need a dose of reality to make us understand how much we take for granted. We left the theater humbled.
Written November 29, 2015
I have to preface this review by saying I am a huge fan of this musical. It is my absolute favorite, and I have seen it countless times on tour, on Broadway and regionally-big theaters and small. The film reminded me of one of my favorite staged productions which was in a small theater in the round. Hard to imagine if you have not seen it, but being so close to the actors and in such an intimate setting provided a much more intense experience emotionally. The film succeeds on this level, with the right amount of agnst and emotion, particularly in Hathaway's big number, "I Dreamed A Dream", and Redmayne's "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables". Not a dry eye in the house. Where the film was less successful was in the rest of its casting. Big names sell movies, but did Les Miserables need this when millions upon millions world-wide have seen and love this show? Crowe was awful, Jackman strained, Seyfried-why? Also, where was the gorgeous score? It never seemed to get off the ground.
Written August 02, 2015
Les Miserables is one of my favorite musicals. Unfortunately, the film version did fulfill my expectations. It is a sad moment when a 10 year old sings better and more naturally than the lead character. Both Jackman and Crowe simply did not have the voice or skill to carry parts that require passionate, intense singing. They seemed as fixed as statutes when they needed to be animated.
Anne Hathaway performed and sang well -- relief from the other performances and Eddie Redmayne was terrific.