|Teen Movie Critic - II is a Dream Machine Site|
The Dream Machine --- The Imagination of the World Wide Web
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Liam Neeson admirably portrays Jean Valjean, a French convict who was imprisoned nearly twenty years - all for stealing a loaf of bread. When he is set free he knocks at the door of a bishop who feeds and beds him, - and who he thanks by stealing his silverware. Caught promptly by the French police, it is only the Bishop's statement that he "gave" him the silver that saves him further imprisonment. So, Valjean totally reforms and later becomes the mayor of Vigo, a small town near Paris. He also owns a factory, and absentmindedly gives his consent to dismiss Fantine (portrayed convincingly by Uma Thurman), a factory worker struggling to support her illegitimate child Cosette. Later, Valjean learns of her terrible story and promises the now dying Fantine that he'll take care of Cosette. Meanwhile, Inspector Javert (Geoffrey Rush, much different here than in Shine) recognizes Valjean and knows that he is still wanted by the French police. Forced to flee Vigo, Valjean retrieves Cosette from the miserable family she lives with and leaves with a fortune in money that he previously hid.
For ten years he and Cosette live in a convent; then Cosette, now sixteen, convinces him to leave. She soon falls in love with a young man she meets, but Valjean doesn't approve and Inspector Javert is still after him.
This is probably more of a woman's movie - my dad walked out after half an hour, and I noticed a lot of other men in the audience going for popcorn or finding some other excuse to leave. Granted, this story is a little on the sappy and fluffy side - it is, however, still a lovely film and I thoroughly enjoyed it.