Les Miserables
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Richard Boleslawski's version of the oft-filmed Victor Hugo novel stars Frederic March as Jean Valjean, whose theft of a loaf of bread necessary for his survival lands him in prison for a decade. Upon his release, Valjean is embittered and soulless, but soon regains his humanity and compassion with the help of a bishop played by Cedric Hardwicke. After adopting a child and a new identity, he climbs the ladder of success, and is even elected mayor. However, Valjean crosses paths with Javert (Charles Laughton), the town's police chief, and after several run-ins, Javert undertakes an… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Charles Laughton in the part of Javert gave it as much character merely because the character as written was eminent, giving a balance to the whole story."
‑ Otis Ferguson, The New Republic
"While there's no such thing as a timeless '30s Oscarbait literary adaptation, this comes pleasantly within spitting distance of that mark."
‑ Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy
"Victor Hugo's classic novel is properly presented as a harrowing social conscience period film."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"It isn't a bad example of the Hollywood prestige picture -- there is, at least, some liveliness in the performances."
‑ Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
"Probably the best Hollywood version of Victor Hugo's story."
‑ , Film4
"The 1935 film is a powerful version, centering on the antagonism between Valjean and Javert - though the filmmakers had to jettison much of Victor Hugo's pages to set up this dynamic."
‑ Christopher Lloyd, Sarasota Herald-Tribune
"Nominated for the Best Picture oscar, Boleslawki's adpaptation of the Victor Hugo famous novel is lavishly mounted and well acted by Fredric March and Charles Laughton"
‑ Emanuel Levy, Variety
"Fredric March gives a superb performance."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"... the most respected and revered screen adaptation..."
‑ Sean Axmaker, Turner Classic Movies Online
More reviews for Les Miserables on Rotten Tomatoes