The Artist (Flack’s review)

Posted on | December 29, 2011 | Add Comments

4 stars
The Artist tells the story of George Valentin, a silent movie star. One day he literally bumps into a lady named Peppy Miller, and they eventually fall in love. George helps Peppy become a star. She moves from bit parts to title roles. When talkies come Valentin quits making movies because he only likes silent movies. However everyone likes Peppy’s movies, which means the two of them are now at odds with each other. Will they ever love each other again and will George accept the talkies? Find out in The Artist, a black and white new movie that’s mostly silent.

The Artist is a delightful little movie that will make you sad and possibly laugh at the same time. Jean Dujardin and Berenice Bejo are joyfully charming as George and Peppy, and Uggie, the dog, provides hilarious comic relief. The movie’s mix of serious and funny tones doesn’t always quite work but the love letter to cinema aspect succeeds brilliantly. The scenes in which sound effects are used become heavily distracting and they really take you out of the time era in which the movie is set in. However the last scene uses sound brilliantly helping show the transformation of George. Some parts in the middle also go on a bit too long but that powerhouse of a finale will make you not care.

The movie is filled with funny moments and there’s a surprising twist ending. The black and white cinematography is also nice. There’s also a dazzling dance sequence later on. I was a little disappointed with the movie because of all the hype. It’s enjoyable but not “best picture winning worthy”. Also if you don’t know about movie history you won’t enjoy this film as much. Luckily if you do, you’ll have a delightful time. Even if you don’t know movie history you’ll be moved by the final scene.

My favorite character is George Valentin because he goes through a transformation in the story. Jean Dujardin does a good job using facial expressions to play the character effectively.

My favorite scenes are the last two. It’ll make you happy and even want to dance in the dazzling dance finale.

This movie is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for a crude gesture and a disturbing image. I would rate it PG for tragic scenes and a disturbing image.

The Artist is a more serious version of Singing in the Rain. It might drag a little but overall it’s a delightful love letter to movies. Plus it has a musical score to rival War Horse’s John Williams soundtrack.


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