An Astute Observation…

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My hubby loves movies. All of them. Pretty much indescriminately. So, when Brian “recommends” a movie, you never know what you are gonna get. It may be an Oscar winning drama, or it could be a B rated comedy that flopped so badly at the box office it made it to the dollar theater in less than a week. He loves them all, my husband. He gathers them lovingly in his arms in his collector edition directors cut special features containing box sets and watches over them tenderly…Ok, that might be a little dramatic, but it’s close to the truth.

He does have his preferences, mostly lots of things exploding or awkward comedies, or a lot of Tarantino or Cohen Brothers films, but what he rates as a “good movie” may be based on the fact that it was so horrible he found it hilarious. In his favor, he is the only person I think my family has ever made watch “Brain Doners” who actually laughed throughout the movie. On second thought, that may be a strike against him. Anyways, he has seen a significant amount of movies and I have yet to figure out any discernable pattern of what he reasons is “good” and what is only “eh.” (He very, very rarely says a movie is “bad”).

We went to see the new Les Miserables in theaters today. For once, I was as excited as he was to go to the movies (not my first choice for date night). I admit, I was more excited to see Les Mis than I was The Hobbit (gasp!). I didn’t really realize how much I liked Les Mis until my sister-in-law and her husband pointed out that I might be a wee bit obsessed. Ok, so I’ve seen several of the movie renditions, have read the book, and have been listening to the Broadway Soundtrack since highschool (so, for over 10 years? Yikes!). If and when I sing in the shower, I will most definitely sing at least one Les Mis song (Castle on a Cloud, I Dreamed a Dream, or-usually-On My Own) and I may still cry whenever I hear the broadway version of Marius and Eponine singing their duet while she dies in his arms after being shot behind the barricade disguised up until then as a boy just so she could stay close to Marius who she loved so poignantly and he was so cruelly-but heartwrenchingly understandably-oblivious until just that moment. *Sniff*

Yeah, I’ve got it pretty bad. Don’t get me started on “Empty Chairs at Empty Tables” or listening to “Bring Him Home” when Brian was deployed.

I really enjoyed the movie, and it is my favorite film rendition of Les Mis hands down. I did cry (multiple times, I can still blame that on pregnancy hormones, right?) and I will absolutely watch it again. Probably a bit repetatively actually. Anyway, I asked Brian how he liked it (Musicals and Disney not being his favorite genre-he doesn’t not like them, the just aren’t his favorite) and his answer surprised me.

“I liked it. But…I felt a little underwhelmed. There were parts of the songs that I remembered (from me making him listen to it in the car) and was like, yeah, I like this part coming up! And then, it just wasn’t there. I felt like the music wasn’t as powerful.”

He’s right. That would be my main critique of the film. The transition from musical theater to movie meant we got a lot of up close visuals of the actors/actresses during their songs. A lot of facial expression and strategic crying emphasized the emotive parts of the music, but, on a whole, musically, it wasn’t nearly as powerful as the Broadway version (in my opinon). I’ll put it this way: I’d LOVE to watch the movie again, but I wouldn’t buy the soundtrack when I have the Broadway version.

Not to say that the actors/actresses were terrible singers, they weren’t! Well, Russel Crowe was a bit out of his comfort zone…but as a whole I thought they did well. They just didn’t give me musical goosebumps like the Broadway singers do.

I wanted to give Brian a hug for such a polite way of saying he’d probably never suggest this movie to watch ever again while referencing that he DID remember some of the songs I made him listen to (I’m so proud!) and giving a critical opinion on a movie based on more than just “The fight scenes just didn’t do it for me…”

Major brownie points for him, he’s the best 🙂

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3 responses »

  1. Never read/seen/heard it – but now I’m going to…before I see the movie, so that I can be disappointed in it like I usually am because I’m convinced that my mind’s-eye version of things is always far more pleasant!

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    • I always prefer reading the book first, so I definitely recommend that. It’s a french historical novel by Victor Hugo first published in 1862. I will say, it is one of the few books I had somewhat of a struggle visualizing easily (maybe thats why I had no problem loving the Broadway and movie adaptations) simply because I have no easy way to construct France circa 1860’s in my head. And, well, none of it is very pleasant, haha, so maybe your mind’s-eye version will be more…miserable? Truly, I hope you enjoy it! And if you like musicals at all, the Broadway version is very well done.

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