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Jan 14, 2013
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Unless you’re still hiding inside your post-apocalyptic bomb shelter, you’ve probably heard the buzz about director Tom Hooper’s film adaptation of the musical Les Miserables.

Just so we're clear Mr. I’m-too-cool-for-musicals, this is not a movie about miserable lesbians frolicking in 19th century Paris. Your girlfriend, mother, sister, or effeminate brother just might want to pull you aside when the movie comes out this Wednesday, January 16, and it might be best to be armed with some knowledge to make the experience less, ehem, miserable.    

We feel you bro. Musicals can be an arduous experience for the more testosterone-heavy of the sexes, but it doesn’t mean you have to dread every note-ridden second. Here we present some information that will make the experience more bearable, and also give you some bits of trivia you can conveniently throw at the ladylove when she asks, "Hey, are you sleeping?!" Who knows, maybe she'll be impressed enough that she'll sing you some praises post-screening. 

Tip No. 1, pronounce it like this: "Lay Miserab."

HISTORY 101
French history isn’t mandatory reading material at our high schools, and "Les Miz," before it was a musical, was actually a historical novel penned by Victor Hugo.

The text, for both the film and stage versions, chronicles the trials of ex-con Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman). Other famous characters include the tragic Fantine (Anne Hathaway) and her illegitimate daughter Cosette (Amanda Seyfried), the former a woman forced into prostitution to support her oppressed daughter.

           Watch out for those haunting blue eyes. They might just make you cry, you big fud, you

Sound depressing? It is. But the machinations of the French Revolution and the 1832 rebellion are a portrait of injustice, moral ineptitude, and the romanticized ideals of hope. A tear or two is in store, future culture vulture, hopefully from your girl and not from you.


IT HAS BEEN ADAPTED BEFORE
Be consoled by the fact that you’re probably not the first non-musical-loving dude pestered into seeing the Hugo classic.

Prior to director Tom Hooper’s adaptation, director Bille August had his own version in 1998, starring Liam Neeson, Uma Thurman, and Claire Danes. Before that, a movie was made in 1935 starring Fredric March and Charles Laughton, and in 1980 the film was adapted into a musical by Alain Boublil and Jean-Marc Natel, spawning a global phenomenon.


                                                          The Claire Danes' Cry Face has met its match

NEXT: The only film where you'll see Wolverine and Maximus sing autotune-free tunes!


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WORDS: ANTON D. UMALI
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