"Have seen the theatre show. Hooper had to translate it to film medium. use of strong actors able to convey conflicted emotions and live, raw singing worked well. If Hooper had simply put the theatrical production on film, would've seemed odd and OTT. Go see it with an open mind. By the way, I thought Russell Crowe seemed bit stilted at first. By end, he was my fave. Deeply conflicted, emotionally crippled. He played Javert with sympathy, making you interested in his back story. he was raised in the prison, among thieves. His singing was stronger in the last number. Almost like he finally is able to release genuine emotion as he takes his life. His performance was restrained and powerful , a tough call in a movie/story so operatic in content and form."