Les Miz

I agree with Roger Simon:

…it’s always been a mystery to me how this tuneless musical was a success in the first place…

Yes. Patricia took me to see it at the Pantages about twenty years ago for my birthday, and my reaction was “Meh.” I read the book when I was young, and it’s a great story, but I think it is a failure as a musical, though I know this is heresy to many. For one thing, it’s not a musical — it’s an opera, and I’ve never been an opera fan (Phantom had good enough melodies that I got past that). And there is very little in the way of memorable songs in it. It’s just continuous singing. Even a mediocre Rodgers and Hammerstein song is superior to the most famous song of Les Miz, “I Dreamed A Dream.” Plus, I thought it overglorified the June Revolution which, like all French revolutions, was the antithesis of one promoting actual human freedom, all of them, from the Terror on, being led by the intellectual offspring of Rousseau.

So no, I have no plans to see the movie.

8 thoughts on “Les Miz

  1. Karl Armstrong

    All valid points, but the movie still works surprisingly well on a sentimental level, the delivery is often technically supurb, and it’s different enough form all the other dreck coming out to be noteworthy. I enjoyed it much more than I expected to.

  2. Leland

    I enjoyed the soundtrack of the original production on Broadway. However, I finally saw the performance in the west end, and meh. There was some neat work in the production, but the musical itself bored me. I’ll wait for the movie to make Netflix.

  3. Gregg

    Took my daughter to see it when she was younger.

    I fought to stay awake.

    Not a fan of musicals in general. Hard to really grasp why some person wheeling a cart down a grocery store aisle suddenly breaking out into song.

  4. Ken Murphy

    Enjoyed seeing Les Mis in Paris back during my college semester abroad, ended up getting the soundtrack (in French), and reading the novel (also in French, took nine months). I’ve seen some of the prior movie versions in English, and have to second or third the meh comments. Anne Hathaway, though…

  5. Bill Dale

    It lives up to it’s name. Except it referring to the audience. Best described as “Spring Time for Hitler” set in France.

  6. Tom Hill

    My wife’s a true believer, so I went with her on Christmas Day. Enjoyed it more than I enjoyed the stage show, though I’ll echo the comment about a few good effects on stage. The movie may hold the record for some of the longest single takes and closest-in zooms, though with Anne Hathaway (even not at her best look, due to the situation in the movie) it worked.

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