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Page # 505

Les Miserables
ID:
1998
Comments:
Director: Bille August
Screenplay: Rafael Yglesias, Victor Hugo
Producer: Caroline Hewitt, James Gorman, Michel Siksik, Sarah Radclyffe
Cast: Liam Neeson, Geoffrey Rush, Uma Thurman, Christopher Adamson, Tim Barlow
Genre: Drama

Running Time: 134
Aspect Ratio:  2.35:1 (NTSC Widescreen)
Sound: AC-3
Subtitles: English, French
Features:
Studio:  Sony Pictures DVD Region:  1 PG-13
DVD Release:  Nov 1998 Discs:  1 (DVD) [$14.94]
Purchase: 
Reviews:  Frenchman Jean Valjean (Liam Neeson), imprisoned for stealing bread, is paroled after nearly two decades of hard labor. A gift of silver candlesticks from a kindly priest helps him begin anew. Forging a decent and profitable existence, he finds success as a businessman and as the mayor of a small town. He even takes in a pregnant young woman (Uma Thurman) and raises her daughter as his own. When a former prison guard (Geoffrey Rush) recognizes Valjean, his past catches up to him. Director Bille August culls mesmerizing performances from his cast, but loses us with an ending that panders to teen audiences. The focus shifts dramatically, and uncomfortably, from the haunted Neeson and his hawk-like pursuer, to his daughter (Claire Danes) and her romance with a handsome revolutionary. After this narrative shift, the script leaves behind the Victor Hugo classic's themes of revenge and redemption to focus improbably on teen angst--hardly what Hugo had on his mind. "--Rochelle O'Gorman"


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