Phantom of the Opera discussion

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All Things Phantom!! > Play or Movie?

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message 1: by Brianna (new)

Brianna (lilliecat) | 12 comments Did anyone love the stage play but hate the movie (like me)? Or vice-versa? If you haven't seen the stage play, but you've heard the CD of the original, which do you like better - the movie or the original? Why?


message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

I like both. The vocies in the movie were amazing. And the effects in the play were awesome. the vocies where pretty good.


message 3: by Marlaina (new)

Marlaina I love them both, however, I am leaning towards the first time I ever saw it, the movie.


message 4: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 18 comments I admit to prefering the stage musical, like you Tumble. The dramatic effects that worked so well on stage somehow fell flat on the screen for me. The one thing I really did like about the film was the opening sequence showing all the backstage -- that showed some things not possible on stage. But overall, I prefer the stage production by far!


message 5: by Marlaina (new)

Marlaina I think the best part of the stage was of course the chandelier falling, and how it seems like the back of the stage goes on forever


message 6: by Brianna (new)

Brianna (lilliecat) | 12 comments Yes, I have to admit, the whole backstage thing in the movie was cool. Most of the voices in the movie were OK, except the Phantom. Well, he was OK I guess, as far as listening goes, but really doesn't know how to sing. Since he's the main character, that kinda ruins everything...


message 7: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 18 comments Tumble, I think we are in agreement regarding Phantom. Butler just does not have the smooth, velvety tones and timbre of Michael Crawford. Actually the whole score was less orchestra and a bit more synthesized in the film I think.


message 8: by Brianna (new)

Brianna (lilliecat) | 12 comments Oh yes, definitely. And I'm glad someone agrees about Crawford/Butler. I was a little scared I'd get flamed. ;) Though a lot of the synthesizer stuff was pretty cool... like the crazy electric guitar during 'The Phantom of the Opera'.

Plus, in the movie they just left verses out of several songs, and left out a lot of funny parts!


message 9: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 18 comments I was okay with some of the cutting in Act II -- like the second Notes gets a little long for me, so I was okay that got streamlined a little...it's been so long since I've watched the movie, I don't recall now what else got cut, though I could tell you every line if I sat down with the movie...


message 10: by Brianna (new)

Brianna (lilliecat) | 12 comments Really? I loved the second "Notes". :) Now, I thought the 'fight scene' in the movie instead of just basically a shouting match like in the play, was pretty cool. Though I wish they still would've had Erik shoot little fireballs out of his staff. That part made me laugh. Hmm, what else did they cut... Well, an entire verse was left out of 'The Phantom of the Opera'. And some of the things that were sung in the play, were spoken in the movie. Like 'Your public needs you.' 'We need you, too!'


message 11: by Marlaina (new)

Marlaina another thing that they cut out was them practicing Don Juan


message 12: by Brianna (new)

Brianna (lilliecat) | 12 comments I know!!!! That was another of my favorite parts! It was so funny how Piangi could never get the note sequence right.


message 13: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 18 comments Okay I was kind of annoyed the Butler's Phantom make-up was just like bad acne or something, not the serious scarring/horror/bloody mess of Michael Crawford's four hour make-up job.


message 14: by Brianna (new)

Brianna (lilliecat) | 12 comments Oh I KNOW!!! The second time she takes the mask off, it's a little better, but the first time, what the heck!! It just looks like a sunburn or something!


message 15: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 18 comments Thank you! I am glad someone agrees with me!


message 16: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 18 comments And what was up with the disintegrating face anyway? I agree second time marginally better, but then it's like, "what happened in all of a few months?" We thought this was genetic or something similar...


message 17: by Brianna (new)

Brianna (lilliecat) | 12 comments Well, he wears a wig through most of the movie. (took me a while to figure that out, but the black thing is a wig; his real hair is blondish, like at the end.) So the wig would've covered up the part of his disfigurement that was up on the side of his head, BUT the part we see the first time has DEFINITELY worsened the second time. Which, you're right, doesn't make sense.

Ohh! Did you also notice that for the first part of the movie...well, up until after Don Juan, when Christine pulls the mask off again... Both of his eyes are normal, but then when Christine takes his mask off the second time, his eye is all discolored and messed up. Huh???


message 18: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 18 comments Yes-- the wig seems the only explanation -- which is what I decided must be happening in the stage production, too. As I recall in the stage production, Phantom always had two different coloured eyes.


message 19: by Letitia (new)

Letitia | 1 comments I saw the stage version with Ted Keegan, who sang the most beautiful Music Of the Night rendition I have heard to date. A lesser known actor, but oh, those pipes! I have rarely been moved to tears because of the sheer beauty of a sound...but he achieved it. That said, it was hard for Gerard Butler to live up. The movie was quite a disappointment.


message 20: by Nick (new)

Nick (ndoerrabbott) I liked the stage play better, but which one. Have seen it three times now: twice in NYC and once in SF (road show). The 1st NYC show was the best: I think it was in the first run in NYC.

The movie IMO could have been cast better and as a result did not translate as well to the screen. Compare to Evita with Banderas (sp) in the 'narration' role. He made the movie. One of the best broadway-to-film adoptions I have seen.




message 21: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 18 comments Nick, I agree. Evita worked well on screen -- especially some of the crowd scenes, you really got a sense of revolution and change.

POTO could have been so good...and yeah, really fell flat. I've only seen it twice, but I'll take the stage over the film any day.




message 22: by Brianna (new)

Brianna (lilliecat) | 12 comments Oh, definitely.

Seems to me they picked the cast mostly for their looks (*cough* Ohhhhh Gerry iz hawwwwwwwwwwwt!!!!!!!!), not really caring whether they could sing or not. Emmy Rossum, at least, knew kind of-sort of what she was doing. Ish.


message 23: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 18 comments I agree -- or their name value. I did like Miranda Richardson as Mme. Giry thought...unfortunately she stole scenes she had no business stealing, because she was the only person doing anything interesting...


message 24: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 18 comments Wow -- 44 times, that's amazing. I wish I had the time to see it that many times. Did you notice any changes to the production after the movie came out?


message 25: by Brianna (new)

Brianna (lilliecat) | 12 comments OH, good. That swordfight was the lamest thing EVER! Though it was rather amusing to watch.
Oh yes, and Raoul's long leather coat when he's telling his clever plan to the Managers. My friend was like, "Where's his Harley??"

You've seen it 44 times?!!!!!!!!!! *is super jealous*


message 26: by Haley (last edited Mar 05, 2009 01:59PM) (new)

Haley (glorywings00) | 4 comments that swordfight was really lame, yes. yea, harley is right. *is really really jelous!!!*

havent seen the play, LOVE THE MOVIE!!!!!!!!1


message 27: by Savannah (new)

Savannah Morrow (SCMorrow) I've seen most of the movie and the performance in London. I Definitly like the Play better!


message 28: by Marlaina (new)

Marlaina ugh I am soooo jealous that you saw the performance in london!


message 29: by Savannah (new)

Savannah Morrow (SCMorrow) I loved it! My Family and I went to London last Christmas for a week! I loved it, but my dad put his hand over my eyes when the man was hanged on stage. I loved the dancing at the beginning a lot. (because I an a dancer too) :)



message 30: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 18 comments I just got to see Phantom for the third time last evening. I got tickets to it as a surprise -- I so enjoyed it and we had great 7th row seats. The musical is definitely much better than the film version of the musical. Though I do think the movie may have re-invigorated the musical for a lots of people who may have never seen the stage production earlier.


message 31: by [deleted user] (new)

I've seen the movie and have the CD from the orignal cast. The original cast had such better voices (not Sarah Brightman so much). I came so close to seeing the thing.


message 32: by Sharon (new)

Sharon (fiona64) Each actor brings something so very different to the role ... I have several cast albums, in various languages, and find something to like in all of them. I've also seen several versions of the stage show and the film.

My two favorite stage Phantoms are Franc d'Ambrosio (who literally has the voice of an angel) and Earl Carpenter (currently portraying Javert in the London cast of "Les Miserables"). Franc is a genuinely nice guy who has been very supportive of my husband's acting -- on top of being an amazing talent. Earl? He just plain owned my soul after we saw him play the Phantom in 2005. (He sang to me, which was awesome in and of itself) ... he just exuded power and sensuality any time he was onstage.


message 33: by Gemma (new)

Gemma | 277 comments The movie is one of my favorites, so it's obvious what I'm pulling for. In the sense of fairness, however, I have listened to several stage recordings, and while the music itself was good, I was unmoved. It just seemed so soulless to me. I've not yet found a version that owned my soul, if I may quote Sharon, but the dilemma here is that while the professional singers sound technically better, Gerard Butler put more emotion into the role. I've heard Michael Crawford, for instance, sing a perfect Music of the Night (and confess that I heard him before I saw the movie), but never really felt it until I heard Gerry, and he hits his share of sour notes. How strange.


message 34: by Anne (last edited Nov 30, 2010 11:33AM) (new)

Anne (spartandax) | 102 comments Mod
I absolutely loved the movie, and am not ashamed to admit that even as a trained musician, I found Gerard Butler's performance excellent. Sure, his voice is not perfect, but he more than made up for it with his passion and feeling that he poured into the Phantom. My intro was the 1943 movie with Claude Raines back in the early fifties( yes, I AM that old) and I never forgot it. I have also heard Michael Crawford's singing and it does not do near what Gerry's did, with the less than perfect voice-which shows emotion is more important to a lot of people than the voice. I like a baritone in the role better than a tenor, but then I prefer the baritone voice to the tenor voice. One of my favorite versions of MOTN is Thomas Hampson, who is a wonderful baritone. I also like the man who is playing Phantom in London, Ramin Karimloo.


message 35: by Paisley (new)

Paisley Stewart (paisleyswanstewart) | 57 comments I adore both for very different reasons. There is no way I can choose between the two.Chanson de l'Ange


Sandi *~The Pirate Wench~* (thepiratewench) | 413 comments Mod
Ive only seen the play ( 5 times! ) but I just ordered the movie..so III have to decide which I like better..I normally stick to book & theater only..but with all this about Gerald Butler..I must check it out. I have watched a few parts of it form Youtube..I think thats where I saw it..and the music Always gets to me..


message 37: by Gemma (new)

Gemma | 277 comments Has anyone seen the silent movie with Lon Chaney or the non-musical version with Robert Englund that came out in the late 80's, I believe? I've been wanting to see them for quite awhile now, but I can't find them anywhere (the library let me down again!). Are either of them any good?


Sandi *~The Pirate Wench~* (thepiratewench) | 413 comments Mod
Hmm..I cant help you there Gemma, I havent either..I think maybe Sharon has?


message 39: by Sharon (new)

Sharon (fiona64) Gemma Irene wrote: "Has anyone seen the silent movie with Lon Chaney or the non-musical version with Robert Englund that came out in the late 80's, I believe? I've been wanting to see them for quite awhile now, but I ..."

The Lon Chaney film is actually the closest to Leroux's original novel (although the ending is different). The Robert Englund film (which actually has some beautiful original music) is the one my husband and I call Freddy Krueger Phantom. I didn't like it and have only watched my copy once.

Other ones worth looking for are the Herbert Lom version (one of the Hammer films from the 1960s) and the Charles Dance version, which is based on the beautiful Yeston/Kopit "Phantom" libretto.


message 40: by Gemma (new)

Gemma | 277 comments Thanks for the suggestions, Sharon. I'll see if I can find those.


Sandi *~The Pirate Wench~* (thepiratewench) | 413 comments Mod
Thanks Sharon I knew you would know! :)


message 42: by L. (last edited Mar 03, 2011 08:04AM) (new)

L. (weavelin) | 34 comments I actually disagree about the Lon Chaney Phantom. It's probably the best Phantom film, but the closest version to the book is actually the animated film which came out in I can't remember when. It's so wonderfully low budget and is one of my favorite adaptations of all time.

The Herbert Lom one is kind of ridiculous in an amusing sort of way, I recommend it simply for experience sake. The Charles Dance one ought to be pretty easy to find since it's on DVD and remains one of the better Phantom films simply because most of it was filmed on-site at the Paris Opera. Phantom of the Paradise is also one of my ultimate favorites; it's absolutely campy and the music is excellent. It's not everyone's cup of tea, though.

However, I do not recommend the Dario Argento Phantom simply because it's nothing but sex and gore. It's not worth your time.


message 43: by Sharon (new)

Sharon (fiona64) Lindsay wrote: "I actually disagree about the Lon Chaney Phantom. It's probably the best Phantom film, but the closest version to the book is actually the animated film which came out in I can't remember when. I..."

Lindsay, could you provide some information on the animated POTO to which you refer, since I have not heard about it previously? Thanks.


message 44: by L. (new)

L. (weavelin) | 34 comments I can't remember how to quote anymore--sorry for the bad netiquette!

http://www.amazon.com/Phantom-Opera-A...

Here you are, Sharon! My copy was a gift from a fellow phan who happened to have multiple copies. I need to transfer it to DVD because I'm terrified my VHS player will destroy it one of these days.

It's utterly low-budget with low-quality animation, but Erik's voice acting is fairly decent and it tells the story remarkably well... but let's just say it has the same problem that the Lon Chaney version does.


message 45: by Sharon (new)

Sharon (fiona64) Lindsay wrote: "I can't remember how to quote anymore--sorry for the bad netiquette!

http://www.amazon.com/Phantom-Opera-A...

Here you are, Sharon! My copy was a gift from a fellow phan wh..."


Thanks!


message 46: by Gemma (new)

Gemma | 277 comments Can anyone tell me about the '76 musical?


message 47: by Sharon (new)

Sharon (fiona64) Gemma Irene wrote: "Can anyone tell me about the '76 musical?"

The 1975 musical by Ivan Jacobs? Anne Meyers has some interesting things to say about it:

http://phantomproject.pbworks.com/w/p...


message 48: by Gemma (new)

Gemma | 277 comments Thanks for that link, Sharon. It doesn't sound too promising, but I'm still intrigued.


message 49: by L. (new)

L. (weavelin) | 34 comments Gemma Irene wrote: "Thanks for that link, Sharon. It doesn't sound too promising, but I'm still intrigued."

That's unfortunately the attitude that's best for approaching any adaptation of Phantom these days XD


message 50: by Gemma (new)

Gemma | 277 comments Really? I was looking forward to reading Paisley's book, along with some of the other ladies' adaptations. I am still reeling from The Phantom of Manhattan, though. That's a mistake I'll never make again.


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