Les Miserables is the 1998 adaptation of Victor Hugo's classic novel of the same name. When the film opens, Jean Valjean (Liam Neeson) leaves prison after nineteen years of hard labor; his crime was stealing a loaf of bread for his starving family. Nine years later, Valjean has reinvented himself as a successful businessperson and mayor. He strikes up a friendship with sickly prostitute Fantine (Uma Thurman), who makes him promise to take care of her young daughter after she dies. When his former prison guard, Javert (Geoffrey Rush), begins to suspect that the mayor is former criminal Valjean, Valjean must flee the town with Fantine's daughter. Ten years later, the girl, Colette (Claire Danes), lives in Paris with Valjean as her father. Colette begins to fall in love with Marius (Hans Matheson), a handsome young leader in the revolutionary movement. When Javert infiltrates Marius' group, Valjean must once again face his past.