To get a feeling of how deeply miserable Les Misérables really are, this scene includes a lot of angry, hungry people bemoaning their fate.
More starving, sad people
…and then we meet Fantine (superbly played by Kira) reading a letter:
Also, a little piece of advice before we’ll get too tangled up into the story to notice the terrific pinafores made by Sophie: NOTICE THEM!
But the factory workers have already made up their mind: Fantine must go.