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The Movie “Les Miserables” by Tom Hooper Essay (Movie Review)

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Updated: Jul 20th, 2022

Recently, I have watched Tom Hooper’s adapted version of the famous musical Les Miserables produced and distributed by Universal Pictures. The world premiere of Les Miserables took place at Leicester Square, London, in 2012 and became increasingly popular among Hugo’s admirers (Hooper). The film lasts for 158 minutes, including three acts divided into multiple scenes. Notably, the film received numerous prestigious awards such as BAFTA and Golden Globe and received favorable reviews (Hooper). This paper aims to provide the overall impression of the play based on Aristotle’s six elements of tragedy.

In Les Miserables, Hooper managed to portray the story of Jean Valjean, a former prisoner who has spent 19 years in prison for stealing a loaf of bread. He breaks parole to transform his life and gets hunted by a policeman named Javert. After a release, the criminal eventually reforms to become a prosperous industrialist and mayor.

Hugh Jackman, starring as the ex-prisoner Jean Valjean and Russell Crowe’s character Javert play significant roles in the film. Their heroes’ storylines remain constant throughout the 17 years of the film’s plot, during which Valjean develops as a personality, while Javert’s inflexibility is his distinctive feature. Notably, both actors played their parts incredibly, highlighting their characters’ best and worst traits.

The central theme presented in Hooper’s version of Les Miserables is concerned with the social issues of urban France, the country showing all the best and the worst qualities of humanity. Besides, the director concentrated on the redemptive power of love and faith portrayed through Valjean’s acts of atonement throughout the movie.

The play’s diction presented a delicate combination of music, lyrics, and dialogues in between performances. The everyday agenda embodied in the songs allowed for deeper feelings to be expressed. Play’s language seemed not sophisticated, rather adapted to the modern English standards.

All emotions in the film were conveyed entirely in the songs performed live on set. Hooper’s commitment to live performance added much stress onset; yet, it allowed for accurate perception of characters’ feelings. The vocal performances provided an extra vibrancy and spontaneity that was palpable. Besides, composer Claude-Michel Schoenberg created additional music for specific scenes, including the battles.

Remarkably, the costume designer Paco Delgado’s worked on more than two thousand costumes. His approach to each character’s traits helped create sophisticated costume designs. Indeed, technical artists’ work paid off since they could recreate specific streets of Paris and convey the French atmosphere of the 19th century.

In conclusion, Hooper’s version of Les Miserables is increasingly popular due to the production team’s work. To my mind, the director, actors, music composer, designer, and other crew members have successfully managed to create a masterpiece.

Reference

Les Miserables. Directed by Tom Hooper, performance by Hugh Jackman, Universal Pictures, 2012.

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IvyPanda. 2022. "The Movie "Les Miserables" by Tom Hooper." July 20, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/the-movie-les-miserables-by-tom-hooper/.

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