The director makes a bold choice to balance the large-scale scope of “Les Misérables.” Hooper’s extreme close-ups and uninterrupted takes for the musical numbers deepen the audience’s empathy and spiritual resonance — to the point of being emotionally draining — for each of the characters played by these actors. With the exception of Russell Crowe.
Parents should be aware that “Les Misérables” is with reason rated PG-13. The central element is a bloody rebellion for freedom, with prostitution of early 19th century French slums an essential factor to the storytelling. But there is no intent to be exploitative.
Cineastes will quibble, but movie musical fans will be enraptured. “Les Misérables” is beautiful, heartbreaking, uplifting and masterfully produced. And this heart is full of love, Tom Hooper.
Content advisory: suggestive and sexual material, violence and thematic elements
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