Saturday, February 9, 2013

One of these things is not like the others

Conversation between me and my two (straight) friends on our way to a movie.

JT: So, what should we see?

Me: I don't know. What about Les Mis? *laughs at his own joke*


Konrad: I've already seen it.

JT: Me too.

Me: I haven't....

Konrad (to JT): What did you think of it?

JT: I liked it pretty well. But the vocals were sub-par.

Konrad: Exactly. I saw it on Broadway and it was incredible. So I found the movie was a little lacking.

JT: Right, the music was just not up to snuff. They did a pretty decent job, but it was nothing like some of the other productions I've seen...

Konrad: I completely agree. In fact, I downloaded the soundtrack before seeing the movie. I kind of regret that now because it damaged the experience. *pulls out phone and plays a track from the movie*

Me: ?????????

JT: See, Anne Hathaway did a great job. But again, I wonder if her performance...

Me (interrupting): Guys, I'm starting to feel a little threatened here. Are you trying to make me feel insecure in my gayness? Because you just outgayed me. Both of you. Big time.

JT and Konrad: *laugh and then move on to discussing whether or not they'll be playing tackle football the next morning*

Conclusion: metrosexuality is making things incredibly confusing. And also, I think I owe it to gaydom to see a production of Les Mis at some point in my life.

A Valentine's Dance earlier that night. JT's to my right and Konrad's to his right. Note the awesome trellis with ivy on it. And Christmas lights. (Couples in order: Broadbents, Crabtrees, Tylers, Weedenheimers, Silvans)

 I love this woman.

 A lot.




39 comments:

  1. At least she actually looked like her world had come crashing down during a I Dreamed a Dream, unlike the Broadway versions where she looks almost happy and joyous. Vocals are nice but if you can't get how the characters are feeling right it sort of ruins the whole story. I just love how people like to think of themselves as so cultured because they like the Broadway version; you do remember it was a BOOK first, right?

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    1. and you think yourself quite cultured, yes? p.s. happy and joyous are very similar in meaning. p.p.s. - yes, zehn, it was a book first but you are very cultured and smart to have pointed that out to the less cultured.

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    2. I don't think anything of myself.

      P.S. I am aware they're synonyms, though they have differing contexts. Happy gives the impression of an internal feeling, joyous indicates an outward display of said emotion.

      P.P.S. Get over yourself. I wasn't implying my own superiority, merely trying to remind those on a high horse about how much better they are for thinking they like the Broadway version better that their version is hardly the original.

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    3. Being a bit snide here aren't we? Zehn speaks for him/herself...and so do you.

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    4. Dude. @Anonymous. That came across as way more mean-spirited, petty, and patronizing than I hope you meant it to.

      Josh, I really enjoyed it. I thought every aspect of it was incredible, and I recommend you and Lolly go :) I think it's funny and ironic that your friends were metro enough to discuss the musical in such great detail but not quite enough to warrant another viewing. Haha :)

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  2. I LIKED the movie. I'll trade greater emotion (except for Javert, who had none) for non-broadway perfect singing any day. That movie made me bawl, and I am NOT a crier. You need to see that movie, your gay-ness demands it!

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  3. One of the things I didn't like about the Kevin Klein movie "In and Out" is how it played into stereotypes. ;) I loved "Les Mis"; though your friends are right. The singing was often subpar. You should see it though. :D

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  4. The Broadway show may feature better singing but the cost is astronomical, and the movie is very engaging and interesting and well acted and should be seen in the theater with surround sound; although between you and me, lets just pretend this didn't happen to Russell Crow. To me he is still Maximus Decimus Meridius, Commander of the Armies of the North, Father to a murdered son, Husband to a murdered wife, and... Well, Broadway is not his thing, dawg.

    I think it's great to see men willing to appreciate the arts and music and tackle football. It's about time you gay people let us join in the fun.

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  5. Husband and I both loved it. I've taught singing, so recognize good technic in the vocal department. So with that said, here's my take: I've seen the stage version umpteen times, because I worked at a theatre where it played for 4 months. And I loved it. The singers were fantastic, and because it was in Canada, the Thenardiers and such characters had really strong, gutteral french accents, which was perfect. But the movie--was also really, really great. Things I loved about it--the up close, gritty emotion. Anne Hathaway is amazing. And Hugh Jackman can really sing. That said, Russell Crowe, although he can carry a tune, was waaaay out of his league technically in the singing department. And the score is a bit too high in places for HJ. But the positives waaaay outweighed the negatives. I had tears streaming down my neck by the end. And I don't cry at movies. So go and see it. And drag Lolly along. And bring tissues. The end.

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  6. Yes. Go see it. Right now.
    I had the amazing opportunity to see it on stage twice (and the obsessive power to see it three times in theaters), and my English teacher-who-was-a-gift-from-God let me read it senior year. So yeah, you've just become even cooler by bringing it up.
    On another note, (and I'l probably regret revealing this) I actually really loved Russel Crowe as Javert. Just going on vocals, it wasn't anything special. But something about his performance really spoke to me. He's easily in my top 3 Javert's. (Phillip Quast and Andrew varela being the others.)
    And yes, you will cry. (Every time I go, I get caught up in the emotion, I swer it's all gonna work out, and then BAM! Right in the heartstrings.)

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    1. I felt the same way about Russel Crow as Javert...loved him. I've seen it three times with different relatives and loved it even more every time I saw it. I also didn't think that I'd get as emotional with each viewing, but I did. Josh and Lolly go and see it before it leaves the theaters...I promise you'll love it!!!

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    2. Same here, the first time I loved it and was very sniffly. Every time since then, it's just been waterworks.

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    3. Ok which movie did everyone else watch? Because I agree, Russel Crow was frikkin amazing! I thought that Anne Hathaway and he stole the show. Both were so so POWERFUL in their respective roles. For me, (and I'm a huge fan of his otherwise), Hugh was the weak link.

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    4. I agree... Russel did a good job showing the emotional conflict that arose when valJean proved to be anything but. And yes, Anne's solo "I Had a Dream"-ripped my heart out!!!!! But I think Hugh did fantastic in the church when he finds redemption- the emotional conflict is epic!.. and beautiful (even if Hugh himself isn't).

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  8. You owe it to HUMANITY, Josh. Les Mis will change your life. Change. Your. Life.

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  9. GO SEE LES MIS. Also, Lolly is gorgeous and you two are just SOOOOOO cute. ;)

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  10. Yeah, straight men can enjoy the arts etc. just as much as anyone. I'd say that definitely has nothing to do with orientation.

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  11. Gee, your metrosexual mates are harsh critics! The singing was not sub-par - it was acting through song and not singing for it's own sake, and therefore the director chose top actors who could also sing rather than singers who could also act. Excellent decision producing gut-wrenching passion and honesty. Brilliant!

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    1. Ditto Gemma! I was really hoping the film production would bring a different element to this adaptation of the stage musical and I was not disappointed.

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  12. The first time I saw Les Miz on stage it was a spiritual experience. But I really liked the movie, too. I agree the singing wasn't the greatest, but the acting was great and to be able to see the emotion close up was fantastic. Yes, you must see it ASAP!

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  13. you are playing right into the stereotyping there, Josh. Perhaps your point is to get people to see how inaccurate stereotyping is? Or just to get them to be able to talk about homosexuality at all without feeling judgemental? It is unclear.

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    1. He's seeing the humor in the fact that people don't fit the stereotypes. This is a humor post.

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    2. I hope you are right, about the stereotyping being tongue-in-cheek, because that part stopped me in my tracks. I thought we were all about ending stereotypes. ANYone can enjoy musical theater. ANYone can like football. Any little girl can play with trucks. Any little boy can have a doll.

      Hoping this was all in gest, and sharing that it made me a little uncomfortable to hear those things said in a Weed post. "Out-gayed" you? Tsk.

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    3. I hope you are right, about the stereotyping being tongue-in-cheek, because that part stopped me in my tracks. I thought we were all about ending stereotypes. ANYone can enjoy musical theater. ANYone can like football. Any little girl can play with trucks. Any little boy can have a doll.

      Hoping this was all in gest, and sharing that it made me a little uncomfortable to hear those things said in a Weed post. "Out-gayed" you? Tsk.

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  14. Also, Josh and Lolly, you guys look unbelievably dashing in black! :)

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  15. I confess that this production was the first I've seen. I didn't read it in HS, haven't seen any stage performances, didn't see the Gerard Depardeu tv movie.... So yeah, it was all new to me- the plot, characters, the songs- everything.

    That said, I think this was an incredible performance. It is such an emotional story that I think to compromise the emotion for technical singing points is to compromise the quality of the storytelling... which is what its all about (at least to me).

    Yeah, Russel was out of his league (as another commenter said), and hugh (My own celeb crush!! Yummy!) couldn't quite hit a couple of the higher notes like they needed to be hit. But the story was so eloquently told through the music and acting that I loved it!

    Like a couple other people have said, I don't cry at a movie very often, bit there are a couple places that I needed tissue. (Valjean and Fantine (both duets), Eponine's solo (I very much identify with that song right now), Eponine and Marius in the rain (that one totally kills me)..)

    Like I said, I'm completely fine with "compromising" vocal technique for the heartrending emotion that brings the story to life.

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  16. I confess that this production was the first I've seen. I didn't read it in HS, haven't seen any stage performances, didn't see the Gerard Depardeu tv movie.... So yeah, it was all new to me- the plot, characters, the songs- everything.

    That said, I think this was an incredible performance. It is such an emotional story that I think to compromise the emotion for technical singing points is to compromise the quality of the storytelling... which is what its all about (at least to me).

    Yeah, Russel was out of his league (as another commenter said), and hugh (My own celeb crush!! Yummy!) couldn't quite hit a couple of the higher notes like they needed to be hit. But the story was so eloquently told through the music and acting that I loved it!

    Like a couple other people have said, I don't cry at a movie very often, bit there are a couple places that I needed tissue. (Valjean and Fantine (both duets), Eponine's solo (I very much identify with that song right now), Eponine and Marius in the rain (that one totally kills me)..)

    Like I said, I'm completely fine with "compromising" vocal technique for the heartrending emotion that brings the story to life.

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  17. Weedenheimers?

    G!

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  18. When the movie Tangled came out my husband mysteriously had all the songs memorized before it was even released. He even wants to watch Downton Abbey each week worse than I do. I definitely LOVE him for that "soft-side";-)

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  19. This post made me laugh! I love when men are real and don't act like they have no emotions or a sensitive side at all. Also, this is totally 100% inappropriate, but that picture of you all with your wives, looks like you are all pretending to do some "doggy style" moves (I won't even point out why it makes this post slightly funnier to me.) I'm sorry! Feel free to not publish this comment! But you did post about "unicorn meat" once......

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  20. The quality of the singing doesn't matter anymore, once you understand the director's reason for having the actors sing their parts live instead of lip syncing, and his reason for picking his cast as actors first and singers second. I saw a lot more raw emotion than I see in some polished performances (such as Phantom, a great movie, but a good example of what I'm talking about).

    Call it artistic license, if you want - like Orson Welles filming Citizen Kane in B&W and opposing any attempts to colorize it.

    Besides, the singing was WAY better than Pierce Brosnan's performances, courageous and enthusiastic though they were, in Mamma Mia. :-)

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  21. I haven't seen Les Miserables in any setting but I really want to see the film! Also, perhaps the vocals were "subpar" due to the fact that the actors didn't record their songs in the studio and then lip-sing as they were being filmed. The actors, every one of them, sang as they were being filmed. The director thought it would bring more raw emotion to the film.

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  22. can i just say that the way they had y'all pose in the valentines pic (the group one) is cracking me up! yes, my mind is always in the gutter. it's one of my enduing qualities. ;)

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  23. Should I laugh or cry that my husband "out gayed" you?! :)
    P.S. I think that most of your readers missed the humor in this getting wrapped up in the critiquing of the film. Good film. Good conversation. Good Blog post. :)

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  24. Les Mis, on Broadway, NOT the screen, is a life changer.

    I don't like the pose in your group valentine photo... opps!

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  25. What a cute picture of you and Lolly. I am in the minority in that I have no desire to see Les Mis. I just had my grandma pass away and I would much rather see things that make me laugh.

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  26. Best voice in the movie: Enjolras, sung by Aaron Tveit. I cried when he soloed in Red and Black just because his voice was so beautiful. Although Anne Hathaway and Samantha Barks were on his heels.

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