I started listening to the Les Miserables soundtrack a few weeks ago; at first I had it on shuffle because I just liked the sound. But when I started listening to each track in order, I really pieced the story together and understood what was happening. If you listen to it on shuffle it's like one second Cosstte is all high-pitched and little and dreaming about castles on clouds, and next she's still high-pitched but now she's singing about love, and you're like, wait I thought she was 7?! And then all of a sudden Javert is wailing something about stars and then there's some cockney little boy singing about killing a king and you get really confused. I thought I knew what was happening, but I wanted to be sure, so I rented the movie from my library (Broadway show tickets are expensive!). I had the general storyline down, but there are a few things the soundtrack doesn't give you:
(If you aren't familiar with Les Miserables, this is going to be confusing to you)
- What You Don't Get From the Les Mis Soundtrack:
- Everything with the Bishop and Jean Valjean is a bit spotty.
- Jean Valjean becomes M'sieur le Mayor and owns a factory.
- How Fantine gets fired.
- Why Fantine is arrested.
- In Who Am I? when Valjean becomes himself again, you don't understand that another man is convicted of being him, just from the soundtrack.
- In Fantine's Death you do get the idea that she is imagining Cossette being there, but you don't get Anne Hathaway's wonderful performance of this.
- You don't understand that Javert thought Valjean was Valjean before the other man was convicted from the soundtrack. You don't understand how Valjean got away either.
- When I watched the movie I learned that Eponine was the inn keeper's daughter. From just the music I figured she was just the bad end of a love triangle, who was never really loved, so it's more like a love line segment and she's a point on her own in the distance.
- You do however get that Sacha Baron Cohen and Helena Bonham Carter are the cheap, penny-pinching inn keepers, as well as the comic relief of the movie.
- I didn't understand that Valjean and Cossette were being chased by Javert and found refuge at the Convent, from the music.
- Javert and the stars was really out of place too, just from the soundtrack.
- Didn't understand that Marius saw Cossette (and that she's older) and fell in love.
- The whole cause of the war I didn't get.
- You definitely wouldn't know that the barricade is made out of old furniture tossed out windows just from the music.
- I was a bit surprised when I was watching the movie that Eponine dressed as a man and fought, and died. (*spoiler alert*)
- How they got to the sewers and why they were there is unsolved in the soundtrack.
- You don't understand that Valjean is going to take Cossette away to England to start over when they are discovered, yet again, by Javert.