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January 18th, 2013

Movie Review - Les Misérables

Les Misérables

Starring: ugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway, Amanda Seyfried, Sacha Baron Cohen, Helena Bonham Carter, Eddie Redmayne, Aaron Tveit, Samantha Barks, Daniel Huttlestone, Isabelle Allen, and more.

Directed by: om Hooper creenplay by: illiam Nicholso Based on the Novel by: ictor Hug Lyrics by: erbert Kretzme Music by: laude-Michel Schönber Cinematography by: anny Cohen

Premise: avert and Jean Valjean spent nineteen years together as jailer and prisoner. Yet after Jean Valjean is given parole and a kind man turns his heart from despair, the two are fated to meet again and again as France and her citizens once more grow dissatisfied under the present king's rule. (Rated PG-13


1) Acting - Total Thumbs Up: he acting in this film was fabulous. Great job by Hugh Jackman and Russel Crowe. Anne Hathaway will have you in tears. Sacha Baron Cohen and Helena Bonham Carter were delicious as the entrepreneurial and ever so lucky Monsieur and Madame Thénardier. But I was even more amazed by Eddie Redmayne. The emotion pouring from him as he sang of the friends he would never see again was breathtaking.

The kids in the film were also wonderful. Little Cosette was adorable and made you totally believe in the castle in the clouds. Daniel Huttlestone tried to steal the show with his great energy and charm in his role as Gavroche.

2) Special Effects - Total Thumbs Up: ost of the special effects in the film have to do with CGI for scene backgrounds or overhead views. Some really imaginative creations they were, too - especially the ship yards at the very beginning of the film.

3) Plot/Story - Thumbs Up: lot of those going to see the film will already be familiar with the story line from the famous musical. For those not acquainted with "Le Misérables" or in love with the music and lyrics, the film may seem somewhat long at 157 minutes. (Some 'significant others' might be disappointed, expecting more action than is actually present in the film.)

4) Locations/Cinematography - Thumbs Up: ome truly nice spanning shots, especially in the first ten minutes or so. The shipyards, the barren hills, the monastery, different sections of Paris, all were shown to great effect. I wished they'd done a lot more of it.

When a musical is made into a film, one would hope it is with the thought of making the size of the stage even wider. But while this film definitely does that at several points, there was also an amazingly and disturbing amount of long drawn out closeups. And they were so close they cut the top off the actors' heads. While this might be a technique that could be used to add emphasis to a scene, it doesn't work well when it's done all the time. With the great backdrops and sets, it was a pity we are denied seeing more of them due to the rash of long closeup scenes. It made the grandeur we glimpsed now and then in the medium seem a waste, it was used so little.

5) Costuming/Makeup - Total Thumbs Up: ome great makeup work in the movie. The film spans several decades, so the touches to Hugh Jackman and Russel Crow to show their progressing years was decently done. Their makeup for Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway for their last few hours of life, however, came out even better. They truly did not look to be feeling well. Nice job!

Even more surprising was the amount of trouble they went to to show the unwashed masses. The dirt on Éponine as she changed into the boy's clothes was a very nice touch.

Conclusion: ans of Hugh Jackman, Russel Crowe, and Anne Hathaway will totally enjoy their performances. Fans of "Les Misérables" will be pleased with the music though they'll also note that a little of the grandeur that should have come from the musical being converted to a film didn't entirely make it through. Those new to the story might wish the director had snipped off a few minutes here and there.

Rating: out of 5 (Hubby's Rating: etter For Matinee)

Gloria Oliver
Unveiling the Fantastic



(2015) Fantasy

The King is Dead! Long Live the Undead King!

"What are you implying?"

The magister glided forward and scrunched down beside him.

"That in order to bathe, you must first actually get into the bath."


(2014) Urban Fantasy

It took everything from her, except revenge!

The muscles in my right arm jerked from tension as I tried to make it move and it resisted. A shrill scream inside my head insisted I didn't want to do this. That if I did, there'd be no way to take it back. "I...I'm afraid."


(2011) Young Adult – Fantasy

Which is worse…the monster without or within?


Home—family—the two things he would never have, the two things forever denied him…because of her.

Anger welled inside him, the heat of it suffusing him to the core, gurgling with seething emotions the total opposite of the coolness splashing down from the fountain nearby. Before he realized what he was doing, Jarrin stepped inside the gazebo.

(2007) Young Adult – Fantasy
“Harry Potter meets Dragon Riders of Pern”


“Do you need any help?” she asked. “Just tell me what you want me to do. If you prefer, I’m sure I can round up at least a few people to come over and give you a hand.”

Kel slowly shook his head. “It’s all right. Thanks anyway.” His voice lowered to where she almost couldn’t hear it. “This is all part of my punishment.’

She frowned, not understanding what he meant. “Punishment?”

Kel cocked his head in Clarence’s direction. In a flash, she understood. None of this was an accident. Clarence had landed there deliberately, hoping to make Kel pay for all he went through in the past month. She shook her head, not wanting to believe this, but what the dragon said next took any doubts right out of her head.

(2008) Young Adult – Fantasy
“To save the world she must DIE! Or must she?”


Panic and fear filled with utter helplessness made her dizzy. She knew what would be done with her, she knew what they planned. But there was nothing she could do to stop any of it.

Sharp gasps echoed in her ears as she felt the room’s cold air caress the Eye.

“You were right. She is the one.”

(2002) Adult/YA – Japanese Fantasy Adventure
“The Last Samurai meets Pirates of the Caribbean”


Laying the blade on the floor before him, Toshi parted his kimono until his stomach lay exposed. He tucked his sleeves beneath his legs to hold him upright if he should falter. Ignoring Asano, he took up the blade. His shoulder flared with pain and he tried not to flinch, as he grabbed the blade with both hands. He turned the wakizashi until its sharp point was aimed at his belly, the residence of his soul.

(2004) Adult/YA – Fantasy Mystery
“He tried to forget his past, but his past wouldn’t forget him”


Torren took a step back a sudden shudder racking through him. It was as if he’d never left, as if the boy he’d been would be coming back-though the one who’d loved this room and all these things was long, long dead. That boy died when he’d watched his father’s blood pour forth from his mouth, the end of a sword protruding from his abdomen. That boy died when he survived while everyone else lay dead.

Info, sample chapters, and free reads at www.gloriaoliver.com

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