In preparing to see Les Misérables, I had been told to bring tissues and to prepare to cry throughout the whole movie.I had also been told that the rest of the theater would be crying with me. I knew the story quite well. I have read the unabridged version, I have seen the 1998 movie starring Liam Neeson and Uma Thurman. I have seen the musical and have even sung some of the songs. What I was not prepared for was the anger that arose during the movie.
So many themes run through the story: justice/mercy, forgiveness/revenge, work/thievery, to have/have not, charity/selfishness, innocence/guilty, integrity/lying, freedom/slavery, God vs. the Godless.
I read history and current events and see the cycle of human nature, over and over again. I see it now and wonder how many are there really that see it like I do. The rise of freedom, freedom turning into abundance and excess, excess breeding pride, power, and coveting. Pride turning into greed, manipulation, lies and crime. Crime leading to a demoralization and slavery of the human being. Slavery leads to war and a renewed hope of freedom. For some individuals this takes just a generation to break the cycle, for others many generations.
Les Misérables is a story for our time. I see it everywhere. The poor are getting poorer. Breadlines have increased aka food stamps. Immorality is rampant. Relationships are easily discarded and tallied. Children are abandoned and left to join gangs as single mothers try their hardest to support their children. This last month alone, I read from at least 3 national publications how the destruction of the traditional family, fatherless families, have let down the children that have been brought to this world.
My anger grew as so many in the audience began to cry. Why were they crying? Where they really that moved? Did the lessons of Jean Val Jean really touch them? Did they understand Marius belief in fighting tyranny? Did they understand what Cosette represented? Did the themes in this movie mean anything at all to the public of today?Of course they don’t. If characters such as Batman, Captain America, Ironman, Spiderman, and all the other heroes of the past cannot capture the American spirit as they once did, than why do we think that Les Mis would be any different. Hollywood doesn’t believe in freedom, but it makes for great make believe stories and brings in millions of dollars.
I have almost written that there are so many unanswered questions, but no. There are answers. And lots of them. That’s why these novels are written. They are the answers to questions that we seek. Victor Hugo wrote Les Miserable while he was in exile from France. He felt, in writing the book, that his impressions of the morals and social issues of the time where expressed. www.victorhugo.gg/victor-hugo/
Just as we saw a small number of freedom fighters at the barricades, and we know less than 3% of the colonists in America fought the British during the American Revolutionary War, so there shall be a small number fighting the tyranny taking place even now on our homeland.
I could shout from the roof tops calling for the fools to be damned, but even the Priest taught me once again that “to love another person is to see the eyes of God.” And that’s when my tears fell.
Yes, justice will be paid, but it won’t be by my hand, but by God’s. Instead I am to learn and then teach what I have learned. I am to fight for freedom, as that is God’s way. It is the freedom to chose for one’s self how we will live, how we will respond, who we will choose to obey. The natural man’s biggest enemy is a moral conscience of an individual, as he cannot bind thoughts and prayer.
We all have an obligation to seek for truth and question with boldness, until we find that the truth is un-wavering. There will not be any internal struggle but a calm peace of right. No second guessing and hidden lies. Justifications will not be given, truth just is.
We all have our causes but I pray that we will come together for freedom alone and acknowledge God. And maybe, just maybe one more individual will join in the cause to be free.