9 comments on “Holiday Movies

  1. I remember les Misérables as the book by Victor Hugo and the French historical period it portrays. This is why when years ago the play came out I was sceptical and now the movie, all this singing etc… I see it as modernization of events which happened 150 years ago. Maybe it is the historian in me but I do not like this type of adaptation for entertainment value. It was all too real then and Hugo was describing in his book the fate of so many in France, the poverty and harshness of the political and class system then. So I know that if I saw it I probably find fault with it because of the changes made to history to fit the modern plot.

    As for the Hobbit did you see it in 3D with the 48 shot per m. Apparently it can be distracting.

    • Interesting perspective about modern adaptation of the material. We did comment on the irony of sitting in the theater with food and cocktails watching the starving paupers sing for our amusement.

      We did see The Hobbit in 3D. The glasses are inconvenient but I did not mind it.

  2. I’m very un-fond of Sacha Baron Cohen myself, and was not happy to see this casting when I started paying attention to the advance press surrounding ‘Les Miz, The Movie’. Hope to finally make it to Miz this weekend. Happy to hear that overall you enjoyed it.

  3. For ‘Les Mis’ what a superb and thorough review you’ve written! You’ve covered all the points re the characters’ portrayals, and even though I’m a little disappointed that you felt that hottie Hugh J. is only “QUITE good” rather than being excellence itself – as well as you revealing your un-satisfaction at Sacha B.C.’s performance (to which I’d been especially looking forward, though not to Helena B.C. ), I’ll only have them at the back of my mind whilst formulating my own opinions. But your approbation of Mr Redmayne’s performance and singing (he’d already turned my head in other roles) is a good counter-balance.
    I’d forgotten about the chance of their inserting a new song and I can’t wait to hear it.
    The music, lyrics and their context are always enough to get me blubbing (especially the first of these) so I’ll have to watch out that my contacts don’t slip in any increased optical wetness. It’s curious how this still relatively recent musical has more effect in this respect than any other I know (and I do know quite a LOT!)
    Anyway, H.K., your reservations have in no way put me off, but have rather tickled my curiosity even more. Should be only a few days now before I can post my own appraisal.

    Also glad you liked ‘The Hobbit’. I wasn’t expecting to enjoy it as much as I did. I’ve (only) read the npvel three times (the last time being 15 years ago) as opposed to five for LOTR – though never being a really ardent fan of the series as much as some are. But without doubt this film is quite a remarkable achievement.
    You mention characters featured in the ‘Lord’ trilogy’. How good to see Christopher Lee back again, even for a short while, after being cut out entirely from ‘Lord’ Part III. With his advanced years he’s obviously not going to be with us that much longer so I found it gratifying to see this household name in yet another appearance while we’ve still got him among us – and in an unforced appearance quite in character with the rest of the film.
    Martin Freeman was perfect for the lead role, looking every bit like how we’d imagine a young Ian Holm to have looked. Freeman has been, in fact, well known for his TV appearances here even quite long before ‘The Office’ was made – but it’s now good to see him reaching near-superstar status.

    Thanks for this posting, H.K. It’s given us a lot to get our teeth into.

  4. The last movie I saw in the movie theater was “Avatar”. I saw it in the movie house because I wanted to see 3-D. In fact, I went back three times with different friends to see it. I saw “Les Miserables” many years ago on TV. It was the old movie. I enjoyed it tremendously. I doubt if I would enjoy it as much as a musical. I’ll probably pass up on seeing it. Like you, Sacha Baron Cohen is one of my least favorite actors. I don’t “get him.” And you’re right about Helena Bonham Carter, she always seems to have the same look which is getting rather tiresome. Good actress though if she would play it straight. A bit too much Tim Burton. Good movie review. You should do reviews for your local Phoenix newspapers. 🙂

  5. We enjoyed The Hobbit, though we are wondering how they plan on stretching it into three films. I can imagine two without difficulty, especially since the glimpse of Smaug at the end. As for Les Mis, we still plan on seeing it … eventually.

  6. We had mixed feelings as well, but not all the same as yours…..Although I DO like Sacha Baron Cohen’s raw talent, it can overwhelm, and it seems, they played this to the hilt here…..TOO MANY TIMES, TOO LONG….. while beautiful Helena played 2nd fiddle with talent going to waste. THE BIG things for me were singing: I went into pain every time the Gladiator nasally toned out some words…. Rodger said it best, “I was glad when he jumped off the bridge, I won’t have to hear him sing anymore”…. Sometimes I felt like the Australian director had TOO many ties to Australians/Brits to make a qualified decision for a musical of this magnitude…. YES, I thought cinematically it was spectacular…… AND DID miss that ending….it was wrong….there’s ONLY one way to end this piece, and it’s with the song you too missed hearing. THANKS, DAVID…….

  7. Not sure if I even want to see this epic adventure.
    Having been in “the profession” in younger years, it just burns my biscuits that they make these movies based on musical stage plays, and instead of using legitimate theatre professionals who can both sing and act, they use “stars”, no matter if they can do either at all, if not well. I know in order to get the backing($$s)to put the films into production and then to lure a large enough audience in to buy the tickets, this is what they feel they must do. It’s all about business in the end, and art takes a backseat.

    I’d rather if they are going to use known names to star in these spectaculars that they dub in a voice of some truly talented singer when the celeb is not up to snuff….sort of like they use to do in years past(though they hid the identity of the singer as not to embarrass the star, and I’m sure they didn’t pay the vocal talent near enough either!) At least that way, someone who has labored mostly anonymously their whole life to develop their craft can be paid something too. So what if the big name film stars have to share some of the profits with a non-celeb who deserves a role(if not the glory) and said celeb has to work an extra film to afford yet another vacation chalet at some glamorous destination resort. As someone named Marie once said, “Let them eat cake.”

    RE-Ms. Bonham Carter….don’t forget Charlie and the Choc. Factory and Dark Shadows(though she got a frumpy glam job in The King’s Speech). She is the spouse of Tim Burton, thus explaining how she lands many of her roles IMHO. She was dreeeeadful in Sweeney Todd.

  8. I liked Mr. Crowe but for all the wrong reasons.
    I wanted to kick the Hobbit and get the damned thing over with. Oh but they took more than a few liberties with the story, but they were well done to tie them into TLOTR. I am not going to sit well in Part II with all those nasty Mirkwood spiders.

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