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Les Miserables 2013 (DVD) A very moving film
Les Miserables 2013 (DVD)
Member Name: weezieholmes
Les Miserables 2013 (DVD)
Date: 28/01/13, updated on 29/01/13 (38 review reads)
Advantages: Songs performed live on set
Disadvantages: You will be disappointed when it ends
As a young girl I listened to the soundtrack from the West End musical at my grandparents house (they had been to see the live version) and I fell in love with the characters and the songs.
I am not a huge fan of musicals but there is something special about Les Miserables.
Tom Hooper's direction and the cinematography, costumes, art design and editing are genius.
Set in 19th century France. Convict Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman) is released on parole by prison guard Javert (Russell Crowe) after serving a nineteen year sentence. Being an ex convict he struggles to find work or shelter.
He is taken in by the Bishop (Colm Wilkinson), but after stealing the church's silver in the night, is caught and returned by the authorities.The Bishop lies that the silver was given to Jean Valjean as a gift to save Valjean from further sentencing. Touched by the Bishop's actions, Valjean makes a vow to God to become an honest man. He breaks his parole and assumes a new identity to start a new life.
We next see Valjean eight years later, a factory owner and Mayor of Montreuil-sur-mer. Fantine,(Anne Hathaway) is one of his workers, but following an argument with other factory women after they discover that she has an illegitimate daughter, Cosette (Isabelle Allen) whom she sends her wages to, she is fired by the lecherous Foreman.
Fantine still has to find ways to make money to send for the upkeep of Cosette, who lives with an Inkeeper, (Sacha Baron Cohen) his wife (Helena Bonham Carter) and their daughter Eponine (Natalya Angel Wallace) so after selling her hair and two teeth, she has no alternative but to start selling her body and becomes a "lovely lady."
During a violent argument with an abusive client, Fantine lashes out and the Police Inspector, Javert arrives to arrest her. Valjean is at the scene and after hearing her story and realises he could have saved her from this life by not allowing his Foreman to sack her, decides to intervene and takes the sick Fantine to hospital.
He makes a promise to Fantine on her deathbed that he will find Cosette and care for her as if she were his own.
Valjean learns that Javert has wrongly arrested a man he believes is him. After wrestling with his conscience, he decides he cannot condemn an innocent man. He reveals his true identity and leaves to find Cosette, with Javert hot on his trail.
He finds Cosette and pays the Innkeeper and his wife to allow her to leave with him.
Nine years on students Marius,(Eddie Redmayne) and Enjolras (Aaron Tveit) discuss revolution, they are joined by young street urchin Gavroche. (Daniel Huttlestone)
Marius catches his first glimpse of Cosette (Amanda Seyfried) and falls head over heels in love with her. Marius enlists the help of his friend Eponine (Samantha Barks) to find Cosette. After realising her secret love for Marius will never be reciprocated, eponine decides to disguise herself as a male and join the revolution.
During the gunfight at the students barricade, Eponine saves Marius from a fatal shot, by taking the bullet herself.
She confesses her love for him as she lays dying in his arms.
Meanwhile Valjean has intercepted a letter from Marius to Cosette and goes to the barricades to ensure Marius is returned safely. Whilst there Valjean has the chance to execute his sworn enemy Javert, but instead chooses to free him.
The students vowed to fight to the death during their revolution and everyone is killed apart from Marius, who is saved by Valjean carrying his unconscious body through the sewers. Valjean is confronted by Javert at the sewer exit. Javert wrestles with his civil and moral duties and decides he cannot take Valjean's life after he showed him mercy and so he takes his own life!
After Cosette and Marius are reunited and swear to spend their lives together, Valjean reveals the truth about his past to Marius and tells him he must leave to protect Cosette and that Marius must tell her he has had to go away. Cosette is heartbroken.
On their wedding day, events unfold so that Marius learns it was Valjean that saved his life that night by carrying him home through the sewers. He and Cosette learn his location and rush to find him.
In a local convent we find Valjean, dying. Cosette manages to get there in time to say goodbye and Valjean hands her a letter containing his confession of his past life.
The film closes with Valjean's spirit being guided by that of Fantine to the Bishop where he joins the other cast members killed in the Revolution.
A very moving, extremely powerful film that will touch your heart. Excellent acting and some brilliant vocal performances.
My favourite songs: Fantine -"I dreamed a dream"
The students - "Red and Black"
Eponine - "On my own"
Jean Valjean - " Bring him home"
Summary: An emotional journey....