• Singing through the implausibility?

Last week, NPR’s All Things Considered ran an interview with Tom Hooper, who directed the new movie version of the Broadway megahit (two productions, 7,143 performances) Les Miserables. ATC host Melissa Block asked Hooper why he’d chosen to “have, really, no spoken dialogue” in his adaptation, and he replied that the “central challenge” of making a movie musical is that “you are creating an alternate reality where people communicate through song, but you have to make this reality utterly convincing or all is lost.”

Most musicals, he went on, “stick to the format of dialogue interspersed with songs,” which is a problem because “you go from one ear to another, you know? If suddenly I burst out singing . . . you’d think, oh, why now? Why did Tom suddenly feel that now was the moment? And I began to think, actually, maybe it’s more honest to say, no, this is a different reality, this is a world where the primary communication form is singing, and let’s own it and be confident about it.”

Couldn’t disagree more.