A teaser trailer for the upcoming film version of the popular musical Les Miserables came out recently:
This is only a teaser, so it’s hard to know how representational these little glances will be of the finished product. I see some things I like, and some things leave me scratching my head.
We don’t get much in the way of music, which is too bad, since this will be a musical after all, but it’s only a teaser. I don’t like how I Dreamed a Dream begins with no instrumental accompaniment at all; it sounds empty. And even when the instruments do come in, the voice and the instruments just don’t mix right; the voice is too “small” as if she’s singing to herself in a small room. It sounds like it was amplified in post so that it would not be drowned out by the orchestra. (“But the tigers come at niiiii….” Pronounce your T’s, woman!) I hope this sort of recording is not representational the style of sound we’ll hear in the movie, or it will be truly awful.
As for camera work, some shots look fantastic and amazing, others look very bizarre. Wobbly documentary-style wide-angle close-ups look very odd to me if I don’t understand the shot’s context. (Is it a character’s POV? Is it part of a long shot?) I’m also not a big fan of the tilted camera, but, again, it depends on the context; the tilted shots featured in this trailer make me fear the camera tilt will be overused. However, the wide-angle shots panning the barricade, tracking people walking the streets, or looking straight down on the factory workers look brilliant. Regardless of whether or not all these shots will work in the context of the film, I think we’re in for a visual feast.