Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Z is for Zone de Guerre: or, a review of Les Miserables by someone who's never actually seen Les Miserables...

April A-Z:  Zone de Guerre

So, I have a confession to make.  I've never seen Les Miserables.

What's the big deal, I hear you say?  Why not just download it from iTunes when it comes out?  I could, but I still have the issue about not caring enough to want to watch a bunch of people sing and dance their way through the French Revolution.

So instead I've decided to just bluff if anyone asks what I thought of it.  I'm pretty sure I've managed to glean enough titbits of information from the various clips, reviews and Tumblr GIF sets I've seen.

Still, I should probably run it by someone, just to make sure I'm not screwing it up completely.  Take a look and let me know if I got anything too wrong.

Les Miserables is a tale about two guys, Javert and Jean Valjean, who seem to have some sort of long term animosity going on. Something about a loaf of bread? Personally, though, I think they just have the hots for each other. You could cut the sexual tension with a knife when they start glaring menacingly.  
Then you have a really skinny woman named Fantine who gets fired from her job, becomes a prostitute, and for some strange reason has to cut all her hair off. Wow, that's a harsh employment termination policy! At my work they just make you do an exit interview which, sure, is pretty torturous, but it doesn't involve any sort of mutilation.

At this point, Jean Valjean decides to steal a little girl ... or finds one in the forest, something like that. Turns out it's Fantine's kid.  Aw, that's awfully nice of you Mr Valjean, to steal the hooker's kiddie and raise her to be Meryl Streep's daughter in Mama Mia.

Jump forward and now we have grown up stolen little girl, whose name is Cosette I believe, and she falls in love with the guy her friend has the hots for. For shame, Cosette! Don't cut your friend's grass! Bad form!

Cosette, the man stealing little hussy, marries the man she stole, while the poor jilted friend dies of a broken heart. Or maybe it was a stray bullet, because it's right about now that the Revolution starts.  Either way, I'm pretty sure she's singing "On My Own" while it happens, so that'll be nice and angsty for you all.
Then there's more speeches, more pontificating, and more people being mown down in a hail of bullets.  And they say gangster movies are violent!  Even the feisty little raggamuffin gets shot, mid speech.  How rude!   
And then Cosette and the man she stole (the hussy) lived happily ever after!  Of course, as far as I can tell they're the only ones.
The End.

So, how did I do?  I totally nailed it, right?

84 comments:

  1. Hmmm. Je pense que c'est possible. But it's a fiction.

    I think you nailed the A-Z Challenge. Bear will be back for more.

    Blessings and Bear hugs!
    Bears Noting
    Life in the Urban Forest (my poetry blog)

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  2. LOL, I enjoyed reading your review (is that how people see the story on the outside?) You've got the action down, just make everything 100% sadder. :D

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    1. I'm quite frankly amazed I got it right! I honestly have never seen it, just commercials.

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  3. 100% on the money - said the guy who has never read it, listened to it, or watched it. Cheers!

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    1. LOL! Feel free to steal it for the next time someone asks you what you thought ;P

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  4. I agree with Charlene's comment. Make everything sadder and you've about got it.

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  5. Nailed it! Lol, this was much better than seeing Les Miserables in concert (mom dragged me). I do enjoy your humor--especially the Meryl Streep part.

    Here's to male sexual tension masked as "arch enemies." Congrats on completing your A-Z list with a bang.

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  6. Hmmm...I haven't seen it either but you did a pretty good job of summing it up! I'm so relieved because I really didn't want to see it and now I know why.

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    1. LOL! Yeah, it sounds like a bit of a downer, doesn't it.

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  7. I'm kind of a Les Mis freak. I've seen it (stage version) so many times it's embarrassing. I know every song in two languages - did I mention freak? That said, you pretty much nailed it. I only saw the movie once - does that lower my freak factor? No? Not helping?

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    1. I've seen a lot of plays, but I've never seen Les Mis. It's weird really, considering how often it's performed. I've seen Much Ado About Nothing at least seven times though!

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  8. You have my gratitude for providing a venue in which I can confess to having never seen Les Miserables.

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  9. So that's what I've been missing out on all these years. Now that I've read your summary, I can die a happy woman...if cirrhosis of the liver doesn't get me first. Ah, gin. :)

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    1. Well, I suppose we all have to go sometime, and due to an excess of sweet, sweet gin isn't the worst way.

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  10. It's my favorite musical. I always come out of the theater wanting to fight the revolution. I've seen the stage production numerous time...twice in London. I was surprised that the movie was so good, with the possible exception of Russel Crowe. I'm your newest follower.

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    1. The music is good, I'll admit, but I've never been able to convince myself to actually watch it.

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  11. congrats on finishing AtoZ. I dont know if you nailed Le Mis for obvious reasons.

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    1. LOL! Never seen it either? That's okay, this is a safe space ;D

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  12. so that's what it is about....I have never seen it either but I am going to steal this description, I never knew loaf of bread could do so much!

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  13. I haven't seen or read Les Mis so can't comment. I just heard it was very sad. My 15 year old daughter read the book and cried at the ending. One day I will read it too. Or perhaps it would be quicker to watch the movie... or the Youtube clips.

    Congratulations on finishing the challenge. You were very creative with your topics for each letter!

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    1. Everyone keeps saying how sad it was, and I imagine if I actually watched it I'd probably bawl my way through it.

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  14. "I still have the issue about not caring enough to want to watch a bunch of people sing and dance their way through the French Revolution." That's EXACTLY how I feel. Also, I fake my way through conversations about all sorts of movies just because I hate it when people say, "you haven't seen ___!?! Oh my god, you HAVE to see it!" I now lie about having seen and read any Harry Potter, any Lord of the Rings or Hobbit (I get it, Gandalf is a dick who withholds his pet eagles until the end when he could have saved us all a lot of time and effort), Game of Thrones (I'm poor, piss off with your HBO subscriptions people), and just about every documentary people assure me is "soooo good".
    Congratulations on completing the challenge. Please don't be burnt out on blogging and quit on us!

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    1. Wait. You haven't seen the Harry Potters? *Gasp*

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    2. I read Game of Thrones to you...I haven't seen it either tho...just assume there is a lot of sexy time and killing

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    3. I've ready Harry Potter, and seen LOTR, but I didn't make it past the first episode of Game of Thrones. Way too much execution for my tastes.

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  15. I spent many hours reading that book, yet only got as far as meeting Jean Valjean. That author is long-winded! I don't have time for that. Thank you kindly for summing it up for me. And congrats on finishing A to Z! You rocked it!

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    1. Yay! We finished, and we didn't have to resort to killing random members of our family to make interesting post topics!!!

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  16. Hi Kellie nice getting to know you through during the challenge. It been a fun time.

    Came by from Tales of the Reborn Crafter
    http://talesofthereborncrafter.blogspot.com/

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  17. You've done really well in your plot summary despite never having seen the play/movie or read the book! FAR BE IT FROM ME to nitpick and point out it's not the French Revolution but the Paris Uprising of 1832 that is the Zone de Guerre in this narrative. Most people, even those who have seen the play/movie, assume it's the French Revolution because for the most part that's the only thing we know about French history.

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    1. This made me laugh, Debra - it was the same thought rolling through my mind, but, as you said, I'm not one to nitpick. I was just happy for a pleasant read this morning that made me chuckle. Thanks for that, Kellie! And excellent work on the A-Z challenge!

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  18. Honestly? I feel much the same way, but my group of "fancy" friends would not stand for me not being so cultured. So I sat down one day to try and read through the wikipedia summary and even THAT was too long for my attention span. I'd rather silly films of shows that can keep me laughing and entertained... not all weepy and emotional.

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    1. I had a squiz at the wikipedia page when I was getting the character names, but it looked way too long and complicated for me to even bother reading it. I just stuck from what I knew from bits I'd seen on youtube ;P

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  19. I've not seen the movie although I did read the book. :-) I think you have nailed it. Minus the singing. :-)

    Pearl

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    1. Maybe I should have sung my review! Damn, missed the opportunity.

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  20. Lol! Congrats on finishing the A-Z challenge! High five!

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  21. Diane's ohhhmmmm brought me to you to say HELLO . . .
    I saw Les Misirables on the London stage years ago . . . and fell asleep . . . not sure if that says more about me or the play . . . and I would say . . . "you nailed it!"

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    1. Ooh, that definitely says something about it. I've been to a lot of bad plays but I've never fallen asleep in any of them. Gotten a bit dozey, but never fallen asleep.

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  22. Great review--I am sure although I have never seen it. At any rate, it was a fun read! Enjoying your blog, and I second the comment from Pickelope about not stopping blogging! Congrats on reaching the end... We DID it!!
    tm

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    1. Oh, no risk there! I'm a blogging addict, I'm afraid.

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  23. If you've never seen the play it's well worth seeing because of the wonderful music.

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    1. I do like the music. Maybe I should just buy the soundtrack ;D

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  24. I've never seen it, either, so you're not alone there. I'll have to remember your abridged version when I try to act knowledgeable in front of my friends. :)

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  25. I saw it on stage about a zillion (and a half) years ago. Sounds about right to me. :) Have absolutely loved your posts!! Well done on the A to Z challenge!

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  26. Totally nailed it!!!

    Of course... I've never seen it either.

    Hugs!

    Valerie

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  27. I dunno Never watched it and never will. I might have had it not been a musical but I just can't listen to that many songs by tormented people... sheesh. But I did watch Django last night!

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    1. LOL! It certainly looks very depressing, but I have to admit the music is pretty good. Very revolutionaryish!

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  28. Well, I saw Les Mis twice (but over 16 years ago) and I do believe you "remember" more than I do!

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    1. Good to know I'm not making a fool of myself when people ask me what I thought ;D

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  29. I haven't seen it either. No stage musicals, no movie musicals, no nothing. Not my musical cup of tea!

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    1. Ooh, I love a good musical! Anything where people stop and sing and dance for no good reason. My favourite is Reefer Madness, it's utterly hilarious!

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  30. Go see it. I even saw an older version in French with subtitles once. Still loved it. You gotta do this, okay? Congrats on finishing the A-Z!! It has been so much fun reading your blog, and thanks too for your support at mine!

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    1. I probably will cave eventually. Too many people are telling me I have to see it, and I'm a people pleaser at heart ;D

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  31. I've never seen it either! I love musicals, but that one just never appealed to me. And once I heard everyone dies at the end, I figured why bother seeing it and getting attached to the characters??

    Good job on the A to Z!! Now back to life as usual, thank God!

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    1. Usually I like a good angsty bloodbath. Nothing like shedding quarts of tears while your favourite character dies of sucking chest wound.

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  32. I saw it and was rather enjoying it... or the rum, not sure which, but I totally forget the end, so I'm thinking it was the rum.

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  33. You nailed it. I did love this musical version but I have a couple other old versions of it on the obsolete VHS. It has always been my favorite.
    Congrats on your A-Z completion.

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  34. I have a confession to make. I've seen Les Miserables and I want my money back. And my mood, for it got me down in the dumps depressed, not to mention blue. When I get fired from my job, I'll become a prostitute, too. It only makes sense. Or I'll turn my hobby - being a Sex Boot Camp Instructor into a real job. I might. And I'll do it singing, to.

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    1. Sounds like a great idea for a musical to me! I'd see that before I watched Les Mis.

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  35. Kellie, your comments were only 31.7% accurate. (The good news is that I don't think you mind in the least, so there is that.. :)

    You did manage to hit my buttons close to 100% however - a part of me is keen to explain in some detail why it's one of my favourite books of all time - except that if you were interested, you would just read the book or see the movie or stage show yourself!

    I love Les Miserables!: the book, the music, the stage show and even the movie. I love the stories, the themes, and most of all the wonderful characters :)

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    1. LOL! But only 22% of them have actually seen it, so I'd say a 31% accuracy was pretty good ;P

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  36. Bwahaahaaa! Most entertaining retelling of Les Mis I've happened upon.

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  37. Perfect. Actually I saw it live quite a long time ago and hubby fell asleep in the theatre. That's actually all I remember about it.

    Congratulations, we made it to Z!
    Rhonda @Laugh-Quotes.com

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  38. Nice post!!! would you like to follow each other with GFC and Bloglovin?
    Besos, desde España, Marcela♥

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  39. Hi Kellie. Thanks for visiting my blog during the A to Z Challenge.
    With the "madness" of the A to Z, it was so difficult to keep track of blog visits...
    You have a wonderful place and such a great sense of humour!! I scrolled through some of your AtoZ posts and had a gooooood laugh!
    Nice to meet you.
    New follower via the Networked Blogs Widget.

    Writer In Transit

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