Today my hubby and I watched both Life of Pi and Les Miserables. I had read both books; I read Life of Pi only recently and Les Miserables, I am fairly certain that I had read that one in high school. I was actually happy to have read the books before seeing both movies today, because after this week, I wasn’t up for stress or uncertainty in my movie experience.
Believe it or not, I didn’t miss the big screen while we were watching the Life of Pi, the cinematography was extraordinary to be sure and I think that the movie won an Oscar for it, but I was more than content sitting in my living room with Jack, our little Jack Russell, watching his reaction to the animal scenes. I have to say that even after reading the book, I still jumped from time to time, most of the time during the engagements between Pi and Richard Parker, Jack wasn’t crazy over Richard Parker. He much preferred the Meerkats, probably because he shares so many of their mannerisms. I enjoyed both the book and the movie if only because it made me think a bit more about religion and God, not converting me or anything like that, just generating thought which in and of itself is always a good thing.
What surprised me about Les Miserables is how I regret not seeing the movie on the big screen. I think that I feel this way because I got a strong sense of Paris the city as a strong character itself in the movie alongside Jean Valjean, Fantine and Gervais. I would have loved to see certain scenes in the movie theater such as the opening scene at the harbor with Valjean and his fellow prisoners pulling at the ropes, the scenes at the barricades with the Parisians fighting against the military and even when Gervais throws himself off the bridge, those scenes show Paris as much as it shows the people and seeing it in its magnitude on a huge screen would have intensified the experience. I can only imagine what the Broadway production must have been like, I had never been, but I am sure that it must have been unforgettable.
It is hard sometimes making the right call over whether or not to see a movie in the theater. Living up here in Blandford, it’s an investment in your time, you easily lose an entire afternoon from driving forty five minutes to see the movie, the two hours in the theater and the forty five minutes back home and more time if you stop to eat. So with this in mind, we try to do triage, which movies really merit the trip. We are both science fiction and action fans, so those often go without saying, but when it is a movie of a different genre, it gets a little tricky. Life of Pi was fine at home, Les Miserables, I would have preferred at the movies. You never know.