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The Phantom of the Opera

Powerful Essays
The Phantom of the Opera directed by Joel Schumacher is the 2004 adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s 1986 musical of the same name. The Phantom of the Opera stars Gerard Butler as the Phantom, Emmy Rossum as Christine Daaé, and Patrick Wilson as Raoul, the Vicomte de Chagny, who are embroiled in a love triangle. The film was met with generally mixed and negative reviews: Schumacher’s use of mise-en-scène, cinematography and editing, as well as symbolism contributes to the production of The Phantom of the Opera.

The Phantom of the Opera centers on the Paris Opera House which has over time become the Phantom’s domain. Upon the news that the opera house has been bought and is under new ownership, the Phantom demands that the new owners honor the “agreement” he has established with the previous owners and that the fifth opera box is kept empty for his use and that his salary of 20,000 francs per month is honored. The Phantom also demands that Christine, whom he has secretly been giving singing lessons to, replace Carlotta Giudicelli, the opera company’s prima donna. He also warns that if his demands are not met, that the opera house and the opera company will need to pay the consequences. Though the origins of the Phantom are unknown to the general population of the opera house, Madame Giry knows more about the Phantom than she lets on. It is later discovered that Madame Giry helped the Phantom escape a life of abuse from a freak show and that she hid him at the opera house where she was studying ballet. It was during Christine’s and the Phantom’s singing lessons that he began to fall in love with her and came to be obsessed and protective of her. The return of Christine’s first love, Raoul, threatens to tear Christine an...

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...of Christine as being so emotionally tortured and romantically torn that both Raoul and the Phantom should ask themselves if there is another man” (Ebert).

Ebert effectively points out the highs and lows of Schumacher’s The Phantom of the Opera. Though the film is visually stunning, much is left to be said for the storyline, acting, and length. Few redeeming qualities make Schumacher’s version of The Phantom of the Opera worth watching. By glorifying the Phantom, Schumacher detracts from the demon that he was and the torment that he inflicted on those around him.

Works Cited

Ebert, Roger. “Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera.” RogerEbert.com. 22

December 2004. Web. 6 March 2011.

Schumacher, Joel, dir. The Phantom of the Opera. Warner Bros, 2004. Film.
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