Having picked up the last issue of your paper and noticing the negative spin suggested on the cover for the movie Les Miserables, I immediately went to the review written by John J. Bennett. I feel that everything about his review is misguided. I usually take such critiques with a grain of salt, but having just seen the movie (twice), I felt it necessary to express just how much I think that Mr. Bennett has missed the mark.
First of all, the music is certainly anything but bad. It is exactly the same music, sung in the same fashion, as the stage production. Les Mis is the longest-running stage musical ever, with over 60 million having seen it. You can be sure that many have seen it more than once.
The adaptation into a movie has allowed the story to be told in a way that brings it to an audience that for the most part would probably never see it on stage. It is an extremely powerful story of misfortune, struggle, grace, redemption and love. The close-ups only aid in conveying the emotions that are present in the songs that make up, except for a very few spoken words, the entirety of the film. So I am at a loss as to the reference to the "wooden dialog." It is quite telling that Mr. Bennett admits that musicals are a hard sell for him in the first place.
I recommend seeing it. Do, just do!
Bruce Edwards, Redway