I found The Artist an intriguing and beguiling movie. When I was young I would watch old Harold Lloyd and Charlie Chaplin movies with my dad and always rejoiced in the overacted simplicity of these old black and whites.
To be honest I was skeptical and wasn’t at all sure I wanted to see it but curiosity won me over and on Saturday afternoon I went to the see The Artist with my friend Stacey. As the previews were showing I was getting worried about the following two hours of watching a silent movie. I even sat in an exit seat for a quick getaway in case I thought it was really bad.
I didn’t need to be worried, I enjoyed everything about this movie, even the silence. The music by Ludovic Bource was lyrical and fun and played to every character perfectly. Filled with a charismatic cast this movie definitely has something.
Easy enough to follow as movies from a bygone era didn’t have much of a plot and The Artist kept to a classic love story of the 1920s. There was a wonderfulness in the simplicity of The Artist that stays with you long after the movie has finished. Even now I am still thinking about it and smiling to myself. I think I am enjoying the movie more in absence than when I watched it.
The main character, George Valentin played by Jean Dujardin, think Valentino or Errol Flynn, dashing and enigmatic, is the king of the silent movies of the 1920s. He helps a young actress, Peppy Miller played by Bérénice Bejo get her break just as “talkies” are about to become popular. The silent movie era starts to become a thing of the past and with that the decline of George Valentin, silent movie icon and the rise of Peppy Miller in the “talkies.”
This movie is melodrama at its best. Dashing smiles, hand to brow drama and tongue in cheek fun. There are some brilliant cameos such as James Cromwell as George’s ever faithful driver and John Goodman as the head of the movie studio and not forgetting the little Jack Russell dog that steals many of the scenes.
A must see if you are looking for something unique and very different.