Les Miserables: Scene 6: Fantine’s Death (1) First, the scene begins with Fantine lying in the hospital bed singing, in whispers, of her lovely and sick daughter, Cosette. (2) Next, she opens her eyes and envisions Cosette looking healthy alongside her. (3) Then, Jean Valjean, the now mayor, enters the room to see Fantine on what is now her deathbed. (4) He kneels beside her and reassures her that Cosette will be arriving as soon as he can regardless of that being filled with false hope. (5) Now, he promises her that Cosette will thrive and live under his care and she gives him a piece of paper inscribed with her desires. (6) Next, Valjean holds Fantine in his arms as she fades away and dies peacefully. (7) Suddenly, he hears the unforgettable call of Javert who has come to return him to jail for breaking parole eight years earlier. (8) Instantly, Valjean tells Javert that he must find and take care of the suffering daughter of Fantine and that he will return in three days. (9) However, Javert does not show mercy for Valjean drawing his sword at him. (10) Quickly, Valjean tears off a piece of timber from the hospital roof and duels Javert as he pleads that he has a duty that he must accomplish before he can be sworn to the law again. (11) Meanwhile, Javert is guarded in the belief that his own duty is to enforce the law with justice and that he knows the path of Valjean due to his own past life. (12) Determined, Javert pushes Valjean onto the loading platform where below is the high tide black sea. (13) Desperate, Valjean pushes Javert back and drops himself into the ocean. Javert Lulinski 2stares down, loses sign of Valjean, but doesn’t leap in after him. (14) Next, Javert, accompanied by other policemen, search for Valjean in the darkness with lanterns. (15) Meanwhile, Valjean peers from a tunnel as Fantine is removed from the hospital by a cart. (16) He vows that he will take care of Cosette for as long as he lives and will show her the light of the world while Javert that he will always be there to recapture Valjean. (17) Then, the scene moves towards a lit village street with families and tourists where across the street from a beautiful stall of dolls, with little girls crowding among it, is a very shabby hotel, still closed despite the crowd. (18) Next, little Cosette is shown sweeping the floor staring out the window at the stall of dolls. (19) Disappointed and jealous, she begins to sing of a fictional paradise that she created in her dreams, ‘A Castle on a Cloud,’ where there isn’t any sadness allowed and there is always a lovely lady in white to love her. (20) Suddenly, Madame Thenardier rushes in in a horrible mood. She glares and sneers at Cosette as she changes the sign from ‘closed’ to ‘open’. (21) Agitated, Madame sings of Cosette bitterly and about Cosette’s mother’s payment for her staying there. (22) She hands Cosette a bucket and demands that she must go out to the well to bring water. She remarks that she and her husband shouldn’t taken Cosette in; her and her mother are nothing, but scum on the street. (23) Urgently, Cosette leaves to place the room where it belongs. (24) Meanwhile, little Eponine comes in from visiting the doll stall. (25) Madame Thenardier coos over Eponine’s sweet and innocent appearance and behaving nature. (26) Then, she sees Cosette’s frightened eyes hiding behind the distant wall. (27) She tells her that she told to go bring some water from the well, but Cosette pleads not to go out in the darkness by herself. (28) Mocking, Madame tells her that she should be quiet or she will be harsher on her and that she never asks for her to do something twice. (29) Lulinski 3Next, A group of five men, who have been stealing outside, came in explaining to the recruit a story of Monsieur Thénardier while Madame Thenardier sets up a horrid display of a fair stall on the porch of the hotel. (30) Meanwhile, the four men discuss to the fifth about Monsieur Thenardier loitering English soldiers in the Battle of Waterloo which resulted in his short come somewhat wealth. (31) Then, Landlord Thenardier, who has been present there the entire time, wakes up from his drunken sleep and sings of his recurring present clients who spend their entire miserable, drunk, and nasty lives in this hotel. (32) At the same time, Madame Thenardier is attempting to sell unflattering things from her stall to an overweight man when snow from the stall’s roof falls onto the man. (33) Sneakily, Madame rushes him inside the hotel where he is greeted by Monsieur Thenardier. (34) Without delay, Thenardier begins gloating about himself as he sits the man down and starts looting him with the help of Madame. (35) Madame pretends to drop a comb from her hair allowing a man to pick it up to give her enough time to grab his wallet. (36) At this instant, Thenardier takes the man’s coat and allows them to see the man transfer his pocket watch from his coat to his jacket pocket. (37) In the meantime, Thenardier persuades the customers that he is an honest man and that everyone else is a nasty crook who steals from others as he pours alcohol for another customer. (38) He calls himself the ‘master of the house’ as he steals a pocket watch from a customer with just a simple handshake and hands it over to Madame Thenardier. (39) Further, Thenardier sings of his customers appreciating a favoring aspect of their deal as he, again, calls himself the master of the house as he pours wine for them. (40) Flash to past time, Thenardier is shown urinating into the exact bottle that he’s pouring for the customers. (41) Back to present time, Thenardier sings of how reliable his customers are on him Lulinski 4knowing that they each have one another’s back in favor. (42) At the same time, at Madame’s stall, a customer is covered with snow, but only because Thenardier causes the snow to fall off in the first place. (43) As this is occurring, Thenardier, and the customers are singing of Thenardier’s ability to bring customers in as Madame rushes the new one inside. (44) As if on a record, Madame pretends to accidentally drop her comb again in front of unsuspecting customer, however the loitering is ruined by Cosette who generously picks it up for her. (45) Over the singing, Madame yells at Cosette to hurry out of the hotel as Thenardier sings of himself in the utmost confidence and pride with the customers chiming in alongside him (Les Miserables). (1) With this scene, Fantine’s Death, I choose this particular scene due to how its’ parallel reflection of how my parents met and how both her and I came into my father’s life. (2) I will insert a disclaimer here because this is an highly dramatic representative parallel to my parents’ interaction. (3) I am stating that for two particular reasons: my mother did not die from the horrible bacterial disease that affects the lungs, known as tuberculous, and that my father is not an former felon who broke his parole to become a changed man in the eyes of God himself. (4) However, when I was a toddler at the age of two, my mother was on her own desperately trying to take care of me by herself since she recently suffered through a mutual divorce and her current relationship wasn’t up to par. (5) She traveled from here in Michigan, to Florida, and to Ohio, where I was born before she returned to Michigan only to leave again to find a better place to live due to the lack of family support at the time. (6) She finally arrived, with me by her side, in Indiana where she met my father, a young, hard-working, proud, and loving man with his own daughter from his previous marriage. (7) Soon enough the two bonded as they realized that they thrived in each other’s Lulinski 5company and enjoyed caring for one another. (8) Three years later, my parents decided to marry each other and thus allowing my father to adopt me as his daughter vowing to take care and protect both of us for as long as he lived. (9) The parallel between this scene and my parents is that when my mother was at the most vulnerable state of being, feeling as if the world has nothing left for her and that she is left alone with a child that she can only do so much for on her lonesome, my father held her close and vowed to her, as Valjean did to Fantine, that I would live under his protection and thrive through the lightness of the world for as long as he shall live. (10) My father vowed to never let anyone harm me no matter what came our way. (11) Regardless, of the biological truth, the three of us were a family and that in the eyes of the heavens above will know that’s true based on our unconditional love and protection for one another. (12) This reflects perfectly through Fantine and Valjean because their unconditional kindness and respect for one another. (13) Valjean knows that his duty to Fantine is to take care of the suffering child that she left behind regardless of his fight with law and his soul being in God’s hands until the very end. (14) My parents reflect Fantine and Valjean because of how they have impacted each other’s life through honesty, heartbreak, strength, love, and respect. (15) Valjean and Fantine are the reflective parallel to my parents thriving relationship. The life lesson that I chose from Tuesdays with Morrie was “Learn to forgive yourself and to forgive yourself,” (Albom 165). (2) On the twelfth Tuesday, Morrie discussed forgiveness with the main lesson being that you must forgive yourself first before you can forgive others. This notion includes accepting your regrets and learning to not prolong forgiveness. Forgiveness can take time to achieve, but it is better to not wait because the chance to do so may expire Lulinski 6unexpectedly. (3) In Tuesdays with Morrie, the example of forgiving others is established in the story of Morrie and Norman. (4) When Morrie’s wife, Charlotte, was having surgery Norman and his wife ever got in touch with them, and that infuriated Morrie. (5) He stopped being friends with Norman and refused all attempts of reconciliation from him. (6) Norman died of cancer a few years later. (7) “‘… I feel so sad. I never got to see him. I never got to forgive. It pains me so much…” (Albom 165-166). (8) This expresses how important forgiveness is and how it affects one’s life. (9) An example of forgiving yourself in Tuesdays with Morrie is Morrie and Death. (10) Morrie discusses that along with forgiving others, we need to forgive ourselves for all of the things that we haven’t done or achieved and not to hold grudges on regrets and what-ifs (Tuesdays with Morrie). (11) “‘…That doesn’t help you get to where I am… You need to make peace with yourself and everyone around you… Forgive yourself. Forgive others,'” (Albom 165). (12) This expresses how important is to forgive yourself in order to learn to forgive others. (1) In the movie, Million Dollar Baby, forgiving others is expressed through Frankie and Maggie’s final request. (2) First, Frankie listens to Maggie give her final request as she lays paralyzed on her hospital bed asking him to take her life for her to stop herself from living a life of suffering after her victorious tragedy. (3) “…I just don’t wanna fight you to do it… I got it all… Don’t let them keep taking it away from me…,” (Million Dollar Baby). (4) After Frankie’s refusal, Maggie bites her tongue in the middle of the night and nearly bled to death. (5) Consequently, the doctor’s stitched her tongue switch and padded it in order to ensure she couldn’t bite again. (6) Frankie had to forgive Maggie for her choice of wanting to end her life of suffering due to paralyzation regardless of his own determination to keep her alive and under his protective care Lulinski 7(Million Dollar Baby). (7) As for forgiving yourself, Million Dollar Baby uses the same scene for expressing Frankie’s internal struggle with Maggie’s request. (8) After Maggie bites her tongue in the middle of the night and gets her tongue padded up, Frankie goes back to his church and discusses the circumstances with the priest. (9) “…You step aside, Frankie. You leave her with God… I have seen you at Mass almost every day for 23 years. The only person comes to church that much…is the kind who cannot forgive himself for something. Whatever sins you are carrying… they are nothing compared to this. Forget about God or heaven and hell. If you do this thing, you will be lost. Somewhere so deep…you will never find yourself again,”(Million Dollar Baby). (10) From this moment on, Frankie realizes that the decision is in his hands and that he needs to decide urgently. (11) Later, when Eddie confronts Frankie about Maggie’s request, the decision becomes clear before it is actually acted upon. (12) “People die every day, Frankie… If she dies today, you know what her last thought will be? ‘I think I did all right.’ I know I could rest with that,” (Million Dollar Baby). (13) Next, Frankie returns to the hospital to complete Maggie’s request without question. (14) He calmly disconnects her air machine and gives her a shot with a needle as he speaks to her peacefully until she is at rest. (15) Then, he walks out as if he had nothing left to give out and to forgive for (Million Dollar Baby). (16) Frankie learned that forgiveness from one’s self-comes with the forgiveness of others though some refuse to accept or acknowledge it. (1) Lastly, in the film of my choosing, Les Miserables, forgiving yourself is established through Marius and the ghosts of the barricade. (2) After being saved by Jean Valjean, Lulinski 8unknowingly, and suffering from a bullet to the shoulder during the battle at the barricade, Marius enters the room where his friends died and looks around as he sinks into a chair in guilt, shame, shock, and regret. (3) He begins to sing of his despair over his puzzled survival and his friends’ untimely demise. (4) “There’s a grief that can’t be spoken. There’s a pain goes on and on. Empty chairs at empty tables. Now my friends are dead and gone,” (Les Miserables). (5) Next, he continues to sing of times he remembered of them discussing and chanting about the revolution-the French Revolution-that would bring a better tomorrow in their eyes. (6) Then, he looks out of the window at the remains of the barricade. (7) He sees again the doomed defense, the smoke, the gunfire, and the young men falling to their deaths. (8) He continues to sing of his grief; begs for his deceased friends to forgive him for surviving instead of dying alongside them. (9) “Oh, my friends, my friends forgive me. That I live and you are gone. There’s a grief that can’t be spoken. There’s a pain goes on and on… Phantom faces at the window. Phantom faces on the floor. Empty chairs at empty tables where my friends will meet no more. Oh, my friends, my friends, don’t ask me what your sacrifice was for,” (Les Miserables). (10) Marius had to forgive himself for living on in order to forgive that his friends’ deaths were for what they believed in, a better tomorrow that would take place after the battle of revolution had ceased. (11) As for forgiving others, Les Miserables, provides that through the confession of Jean Valjean and his untimely death on the night of his daughter Cosette and her lover Marius’s wedding. (12) After Jean Valjean’s departure from Cosette and Marius after his confession to Marius of his true identity, Cosette and Marius have a glorious Lulinski 9and joyous wedding which afterwards Marius discovers the cons, Thenardier and Madame Thenardier, attempting to loot of the wedding guests. (13) Then, the two cons try to stop Marius from kicking them off the premises because Thenardier has something important to tell Marius, but only if he pays him five hundred francs. (14) Desperately, Marius demands that Thenardier speaks, and Madame reminds him that her husband’s information comes with payment. (15) Next, Thenardier confesses that he saw Jean Valjean in the sewers with a corpse, a boy that he killed, on his back, and that he found himself a well souvenir, a gold ring. (16) Amazed, Marius looks at the gold ring and realizes that the ring belongs him. (17) Thenardier takes the ring back saying that that encounter happened the same night the barricade crumpled. (18) Shocked, Marius realized that he was right about Jean Valjean saving his life that night. (19) Thenardier glimpses at Cosette and leaned towards Marius to tell him that he’ll only tell him where Valjean had gone if he pays his due. (20) Urgently, Marius takes out the money and hesitantly places it into Thenardier’s hand. (21) Madame quickly takes the money from Thenardier and demands that Marius should pay more because of Cosette being a orphaned girl that was raised in a convent and has plenty to spare. Desperate still, Marius hands over more money to Madame. (22) Suddenly, Thenardier makes a crude remark about Cosette which angers Marius to punch Thenardier aggressively impactful in the mouth causing him to collapse to the ground with a bloody lip. (23) The entire room falls silent and focuses on Marius, Thenardier, and Madame as Marius demands Valjean’s whereabouts. (24) Fearful, Thenardier tells him that Valjean is in the convent. Instantly, Marius rushes to Cosette with the information and hurries to Valjean. (25) That night, Valjean is praying weakly to die peacefully in God’s mercy at the chapel where he is greeted by the ghost of Fantine. (26) “‘I am ready, Fantine…’… ‘Monsieur lay down your burden…’…’At the end of my days…’… ‘You raised my Lulinski 10child in love…’ … ‘She’s the best of my life…’ … ‘…and you will be with God,'”(Les Miserables). (27) Then, Cosette and Marius enter the chapel and Valjean notices calling for her. She goes to him asking about his health and why he left so suddenly. (28) Valjean asks if he is forgiven and Marius interjects that it is him who should be asking for forgiveness since he saved his life at the barricade and brought him home to Cosette. (29) Valjean is pleased that now he can die in peace with their accompaniment beside him, but Cosette insists on him living. (30) Shakily, Valjean hands her a letter of his confession to her. (31) “… ‘It’s the story of one who turned from hating. A man who only learned to love when you were in his keeping…,'”(Les Miserables). (32) Consequently, Valjean sees three ghosts waiting for him as he begins to fade away: the Bishop, Fantine, and Eponine. (33) Valjean accepts his fate and tells Fantine that he is ready to die. Cosette hugs Valjean desperately, crying. (34) He reaches his hands to Fantine and lets her hold them. (35) “‘Take my hand. I’ll lead you to salvation… And remember… to love another person is to see the face of God…'”(Les Miserables). (36) Fantine leads him out of the chapel leaving Cosette to sob with Marius among the corpse of the man who impacted her life forever (Les Miserables). (37) Cosette and Marius had to forgive Valjean for hiding his past life and to distancing himself from the them to die with the knowledge that he finally paid for his sins for God’s mercy on his soul.