'Les Miserables' Episode 4 Recap: In My Life

Cosette (Photo: Courtesy of Robert Viglasky / Lookout Point)

Previously on Les Miserables: After another several-year stint in prison, Valjean breaks out, retrieves his bottomless secret stash of money – seriously were those candlesticks made of diamonds?? – and heads to Montfermeil to finally rescue Fantine’s daughter. Getting a tiny child to care for is the saving of Jean Valjean’s character as he suddenly becomes gruff, caring and kind of adorable instead of just feral and self-centered. Unfortunately, Javert is still stalking Valjean across the entire countryside of France and this eventually drives Valjean and Cosette to take shelter in a kind nunnery, where the Mother Superior breaks something like a hundred years of tradition by letting a man into their holy building and lying to the police. I guess Valjean must have a really nice face?

It’s unfortunate for Les Miserables that the worst part of its story is something that no adaptation has yet quite figured out how to fix, given that this character is a key piece of so many of its major arcs. And that is the fact that Marius Pontmercy is the worst.

Shakespeare’s Tragic Heroine Gets to Tell Her Own Story in 'Ophelia'

Daisy Ridley as Ophelia (Photo: IFC FIlms)

William Shakespeare’s plays always provide rich fodder for the feature film industry, as every generation seemingly wants their own takes on the Bard’s most famous works. Often times, these leads to somewhat unconventional interpretations, in which main characters are gender-swapped, contemporary settings are used, or the plays are used to provide commentary on various modern-day issues.

But there’s one character who almost never gets her due, no matter what production we happen to be discussing. And that’s Hamlet’s doomed love, Ophelia, who is often regulated to a simpering madwoman with little agency over her own life beyond the method of her death. 

A feature film is looking to change all that. 

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