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Les Miserables


Sepiatone
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In another thread, Dothery, I think it was, mentioned that at the moment she was typing, *Les Miserables* was on, and she had seen it 22 times.

 

 

Well, if she was talking about the 1935 FREDERICK MARCH movie, I watched it last night( or early this morning) for the FIRST time.

 

 

I had seen this movie in several forms.

 

 

I saw the one with MICHAEL RENNIE.

 

 

I had a version made sometime in the 1980's with a cast of people I've never heard of.

 

 

I have a version made with LIAM NEESON.

 

 

I saw the '70s? very early '80's? TV version with RICHARD JORDAN and TONY PERKINS.

 

 

I've even seen a sloppy, revisionist FRENCH version made in the late '40's.

 

 

The only version I haven't seen is the MUSICAL, and the movie made from that musical.

 

 

All this after READING Hugo's towering novel, which becomes unrecognizable once the CAMERAS start rolling.

 

 

I would venture to say that March's and the Jordan versions are the ones I liked best. Neeson's version isn't too bad, either, and GEOFFREY RUSH was a formidable JAVERT.

 

 

But I feel that if any version was made true to the novel, people wouldn't have liked the ending, which concerns Valjean on his deathbed. After all, we've come to be sympathetic towards him, and wish only the best for him and Cossette. But in spite of any Hollywood, or any OTHER film maker's diddling of the story, the main story itself is a wonderful tale of a man's attempt at redemption and his constant need to "pay it forward", a concept long held by others way before that movie about it came out.

 

 

Sepiatone

 

 

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Sepiatone, I am your polar opposite when it comes to this. The only version of Les Miserables I've seen is the movie musical on Xfinity.

 

I've heard the soundtrack before though. I like the musical but not for long car trips through a forest, (which my friend who drove played.) For that I prefer Neil Young, Van Morrison,or the Allman Brothers. Last week on my trip through Michigan's Upper Peninsula the Radio Played Midnight Rider right before I hit the town of Paradise, (look it up it's there.) God that was perfect.

 

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The one that you must see is the 1934 French version that TCM has aired on the Imports feature. I was so impressed that when Barnes and Noble had their annual 50% off Criterion sale, I bought it - and I'm loathe to spend that much for a DVD.

 

With a running time of about 4 1/2 hours, it does justice to the source material.

 

Otherwise, I can find things that I like about the 1935, 1952 and the 1998 theatrical versions, but I'd probably put on the 1978 TV movie before any of them - and I do have them all. There's still quite a few more straight adaptations that I have to check out.

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