I was reading on Deadspin a review of Les Miserables and I had to post this paragraph. (but ugh, I did NOT agree with this Gawker review, pssshaw!) My feelings exactly! Don't let this come off as me not totally loving the damn movie, because I did. I can't wait to see it again, to be honest. But the low points this reviewer takes note of (Russell Crowe, Sacha Baron Cohen, and Helena Bonham Carter...) were my exact issues last night in the car ride home with Mark.
Jackman, who's won a musical Tony, is all conflicted heroism as Valjean, effortlessly able to turn his songs into emotional signposts that mark the different stops on his character's arc. Likewise, Anne Hathaway as the doomed Fantine is nothing but noble, wretched desperation. (Considering that Jennifer Hudson won an Oscar for one good song in Dreamgirls, it's hard to see how Hathaway won't do the same thing thanks to "I Dreamed a Dream," which is a powerhouse tune she nails.) And Eddie Redmayne successfully takes over the movie in the final third as the dashing Marius who will sweep Cosette (Amanda Seyfried) off her feet. Really, with the exception of Helena Bonham Carter and Sacha Baron Cohen, who play the deeply unfunny scoundrels the Thénardiers, the only major mistake is Crowe, whose one-note Javert is flat rather than imposing or tortured. Others have knocked his singing, but I don't think it's a matter of technical skill so much as his odd choice to deliver everything in the same low baritone. In Les Misérables, you want to feel Javert's frightening presence around every corner, but here he just hangs out looking glum.