I'm often surprised at which films are highly anticipated. I know Les Miserables has been a beloved musical for decades, but it's also been adapted to screen already, in 1998, starring Liam Neeson, Geoffrey Rush, and Uma Thurman. So I'm surprised at all the anticipation and Oscar buzz this received for months before its release. Sure, the cast is strong, including Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway, Amanda Seyfried, Helena Bonham Carter, and Sacha Baron Cohen. And it's directed by recent Oscar winner Tom Hooper (for 'The King's Speech'). But we've all seen it already! I don't quite get it.
But anyhow, now that I've seen it I can better comment. It's good. It's quite good. And many of the performances are great, particularly Anne Hathaway who truly moves me with her all too brief supporting role. She'll get my vote for the Critics Choice Movie Awards this year. So it's sure to please those that await it. But let's keep it real. It's just not one of the 10 best films of the year. Not even close. It takes a while to get into it, even for those of us who are familiar and know what to expect. And those uninitiated into the cult will probably be taken aback by the fact there's no spoken dialogue. There's only singing. That takes some getting used to.