After some build up to the The Court Of Miracles, towards the end of movie we’re finally introduced to it via song. Phoebus and Quasimodo find it in through a grave that lends into the old catacombs. They go to warn they that Frollo is coming, however in going there they unknowingly lead Frollo there. The song is sung by Clopin, who is the leader. He’s backed by a good portion of the court.
The song is Clopin and crew basic telling what the Court of Miracles is, why it’s called that and that their going to die from intruding. This scene is taken from the book when Gringoire (not in the movie but his characterization is merged with Clopin and Phoebus) stumbles into the Court of Miracles). Unlike the book, Phoebus and Quasimodo aren’t married off as means of getting off the hook, (though in a deleted song Phoebus and Esmeralda do get married). Instead Esmeralda spoils Clopin’s fun.
The song is fun. It shows off Clopin’s personality as he delights in tormenting Quasimodo and Phoebus. The song is split into two parts the introduction to the truth of Court of Miracles; where scum of Paris collect. The Miracles reference to beggars faking ailments, like the lame walking and the blind being able to see. The second part is reason for the Court of Miracles: a safe haven for the Gypies. Since the Gypies are not Frollophiles, they seem more than happy to Phoebus, Captain of the Guard and Quasimodo, Frollo’s lackey, hang. This is the part of that is a little more fun as Clopin is tormenting Phoebus and Quasimodo as he about to hang them. He dress like a lawyer and a Judge ( Frollo), he also takes out his puppet clopin, and finally say that their innocent but their going to hang anyway.
The real difference between the two parts is the fist part is in the dark spooky catcombs, where their are piles of bones and members of the Court are dressed like skeletons. This part is dark with a greenish undertone. The second part which is in the safe-haven, has a warm feel, bright lighting and colorful fabrics everywhere. It’s interesting to note that historical the Cour des miracles (Court of Miracles) were the slums of Paris not catacombs. But I guess the slum would have been easy for Frollo to find and it more intriguing as a concept, living in the scary catacombs.
The song is fun and well sung by Paul Kandel. When I was a kid I didn’t really care for it but now it’s in the top tier for me in Hunchback of Notre Dame.
Next time – Bells of Notre Dame Reprise