While the same teaser for Tom Hooper's film of the wildly popular musical version of Les Misérables continues to run on screens in the States, cinemas overseas are now getting a longer trailer that reveals more beyond some scattered images and Anne Hathaway's rendition of "I Dreamed a Dream." A taste of that trademark tune does appear again here, but--owing to this film's unusual-for-movie-musicals all-live-on-set-vocals approach--in a wildly different take than has been heard in the Universal's CinemaCon reel, the theatrical teaser, or the live singing featurette; what is widely known and recognized as a powerful but pretty tune is radically transformed into something much more unpolished and emotionally raw, a melancholy lament now taken the next level as an anguished wail of raging bitterness and anger. Who knows what other surprising twists on Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg's score lie in store in the finished film, but this trailer offers more traditional-sounding performances of other familiar songs: the gentle, lulling "Castle on a Cloud"; the rousing anthem "Do You Hear the People Sing?"; and, most revealingly, the thrilling full company act one finale "One Day More!"--offering audiences the first taste of Russell Crowe's singing voice as the piece's lead antagonist Inspector Javert. My initial gut reaction? Well, at least everyone else sounds wonderful. But, again, as I've said before, benefit of the doubt until I've seen the entire film.
Les Misérables opens in cinemas on Christmas Day.