The absolute conviction about a Christian God struck me as unusual (I would not say “overbearing” given the time and place portrayed) in a modern movie and I chalked it up to Victor Hugo, but that’s not entirely the case says the L.A.Times:
“Les Misérables” is positively awash in Christian symbolism. Some of the movie’s religious themes come from Victor Hugo’s classic novel and from the enormously successful stage musical. Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman) is an ex-convict who steals silver from a church and then undergoes a moral transformation when the priest defends him to prevent him from being returned to prison. From that point on, Valjean sings frequently about his commitment to God. His most memorable number is “Bring Him Home,” in which he prays to God to save Marius, the man loved by his adopted daughter, Cosette.
These spiritual yearnings were present in the novel and play, along with passionate social criticism of the mistreatment of the poor. Yet the religious subtext seems more overbearing in the movie, with lots of close-ups of crosses and other Christian artifacts that have never been highlighted so intently in the stage version.