If you haven't already seen the movie version of Phantom of the Opera, go see it now.  Today.  It's excellent.

Phantom poster.

The Phantom is handsome then repulsive, Raoul is a little blond for my taste but well played, and Minnie Driver plays Carlotta brilliantly.  The voices are wonderful, and the sets are glorious and creepy by turns.  There's also extra dialogue to the stage version which expands the story and at least one new song.  Even after seeing the stage version four times (Her Majesty's Theatre in London, 1995; Fox Theatre in St Louis, 1998; San Antonio TX in 2001; the Majestic Theatre in New York 2004) I still learned something more about the story.

We saw it last week and the show was interrupted by a fire alarm.  Some teenager had leaned on the fire alarm and accidentally set it off.  It was snowing outside.  The entire theatre evacuated in an orderly fashion, no pushing or screaming, and the movie resumed once we were all back in our seats.  Makes me think all those high school fire drills in the rain counted for something.  Even with the interruption it was great.  A few minutes earlier and it would have fallen right where the usual intermission happened, right before the Masquerade scene.

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