Home > Movie Reviews > Do you hear the people sing? – A rapid review of “Les Miserables”

Do you hear the people sing? – A rapid review of “Les Miserables”

amanda-seyfried-new-les-miserables-poster-01I’m sorry to say that, despite experiencing chills during the opening scenes of “Les Miserables,” I fell asleep during several scenes near the end.  The live show was amazing when I saw it back in undergrad, and I felt that the quality of the singing was lower here, especially with Javert, despite Russell Crowe’s piercing glare.  Everyone has been praising Anne Hathaway’s performance, but I felt it was a little empty, a little simple.

I expected the movie to flaunt its medium more – with film, one is able to get both closer and farther from the singers, as well as realistic scenery and setting.  The opening scene was a good example of this – the ship was huge, and the shot started unexpectedly from underwater.  However, too much of the film was the same: close-ups of the actors, blurring in and out of focus, singing.  While this might be more intimate than watching someone sing on a stage, the truth is that a lot of people don’t really look that good or interesting while they’re singing, and having a face so up in your face actually detracts from the musical performance.

Despite my misgivings, the movie got a round of applause at the end.  Also, why was this a Christmas movie?  It’s a bit of a downer.

3/5 Waffles

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