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Les Miserables

Does the end ever justify the means?

When Jean Valjean steals a loaf of bread to save his starving nephew, he is sentenced to slavery under the watchful eye of police inspector Javert. So begins Les Miserables, one of the best-known novels of the 19th-century, later becoming Schönberg’s hit musical, which in turn has now been adapted for the big screen.

Crossing the Culture Rachel Helen Smith

Valjean (Hugh Jackman) is eventually freed from slavery but soon breaks his parole. A selfless bishop shows him incredible mercy, and tells him that he has been blessed to become a blessing: ‘See in this some higher plan. / You must use this [experience] / To become an honest man. / [...] God has raised you out of darkness / I have bought your soul for God’.