Sunday, 24 February 2013

The Artist (2011) Review

The Artist (2011) PosterThe 2013 Academy Awards are just a few hours away, so this is the perfect time to go back, watch and review last years best picture winner. This film is a brilliant movie, it is french made but... is made in the old Hollywood silent style. It was a stroke of genius to make a film about the fall of the silent era of  Hollywood but in itself a silent film, so it pays homage and also brings it back, Genius!

The Movie follows George Valentin who is a silent movie swashbuckling movie star, its obviously paying homage to Douglas Fairbanks who was the same in real life. After the premiere of  his latest film, an enthusiastic fan Peppy Miller bumps into George while trying to get his autograph. He reacts all calm, Peppy meanwhile sees her chance to plant a Kiss on George's cheek, many photographs are taken of this moment. This makes the media ask the next day "Who's That Girl?", this drives Peppy to go for an audition for a minor dancing role at the studio. However Peppy eventually becomes a star and even manages to succed in the switch over to "talkies", leaving her idol poor George trying his best to make and promote silent movies. His world is turned up side down. Can he somehow get back to the top?. You will have to watch it to see it.

I adore this film the first time I saw this I was mesmerized, it was great to see a film that was so original and not a sequel or reboot, its just a beautiful film. Yes its Black and White, Yes its silent but this film with its subject matter its portraying would not work as a colour film. There is so much heart and passion put into this film the cast look like they enjoyed it so much, even if a lot of the time they get out acted by a dog! Michel Hazanavicius who wrote and Directed this film is obviously making the film he always wanted to make, he must also obviously love his old Hollywood movies to pay so much homage and respect to them. The tap dance numbers just bring back the nostalgia feeling of Fred and Ginger it works so well. The truth is this film is kinda of true to life many actors like George struggled to make it into the talking era of movies, be it their type of film didn't work in sound or they just didn't have the voice. Their is two other films that go on this idea of stars struggling the switch to sound they are: Sunset Boulevard (1950) and the one and only Singin' in the Rain (1952). The two leads in this film are amazing together so much chemistry and they just bounce off each other, the casting was amazingly done well. Jean Dujardin won the Oscar for his portrayal of George Valentin, he deserved it, he is amazing in this film, the charm he has and then playing the darker side of him its just one of them performances that is at its peak. We cheer for him, we feel sad for him and we just hope that he can find his feet again and the movie can end happily. Also I have to mention the dog, never since the sitcom Frasier have I seen a canine performance like this, its kind of strange that he has a book out! seriously but hey I just think he was great in the movie.

This film is just so charming and perfect and humble, yes its dark in places, the fall of George's fame comes to mind, but there is just so much to see and experience with this film. The British Baftas loved it, the American Oscars loved it and i loved it. It is that good I very nearly inducted it into my top 10 of all time. Once in a while film comes out that just needs to get noticed and seen, this is one of them. The only let down for me is in the last second of the film, it didn't work for me i can't say what spoilers and all but if you must know email me and I will tell all. 

So to end this film is perfection, it was the rightful winner of all them awards, you have to see this film! Let the Artist take you away from life for its 2 hour running time you will get drawn into this films story, characters and the emotion.

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