I don't know how I managed to remain all but oblivious to the phenomenon that is The Phantom of the Opera for so long but. . . having watched the 2004 film for the first time yesterday, I am now semi-obsessed! Okay, totally obsessed. . .
This is not going to be a review (my thoughts on the film are currently too scattered - not to mention biassed - for that), but rather an invitation for discussion and for a sharing of opinions! For a full plot summary and review, see Charity's Place.
Wow! What an experience it is! (And how I would have loved to have seen it on the big screen, rather than my laptop screen. . .) The grandeur, the colour, the energy - and most of all, of course, the music. You know there has to be something special about a film when you can't get it out of your mind for one minute, during the hours and days after you first watch it. I can only think of a few other movies that have had quite the same effect on me. . . Pride and Prejudice 2005, the Lord of the Rings trilogy, Lorna Doone. . .
It's dark, it's romantic, and it contains plenty of food for thought, with themes of redemption, compassion, cruelty and forgiveness, obsessive love and selfless love.
A few thoughts, to get the discussion going:
*Gerard Butler as The Phantom (Erik). . . wow! ;-) And I don't care about his vocal powers, or perceived lack thereof. His acting was amazing, and his voice, while not classically trained or technically flawless, was powerful and emotive.
*I was surprised to see so many wonderful British actors in this production! Ciaran Hinds in a musical, who would have thunk it. :-) As well as Miranda Richardson, Simon Callow, and others. In fact, I think nearly all of the cast were British (or Irish, in the case of Hinds), with only a couple of exceptions.
*[Warning - spoilers!] I was disappointed at first by the ending. . . I wanted so badly for there to be a happy ending for the Phantom. But after more thought, I suppose the story was resolved in the only possible way after all. And the Phantom, though he doesn't get Christine, does find redemption through his mad obsession giving way, in the final minutes, to selfless love. *End of spoilers*
*Emmy Rossum - can't believe she was only 16-17 when she played Christine!
*Have you seen the stage production, or read the book? Would you recommend the book? And if so, which translation?
*Your thoughts on the movie?