The story of King George VI of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, his impromptu ascension to the throne and the speech therapist who helped the unsure monarch become worthy of it.
Helena Bonham Carter
Acting under the cover of a Hollywood producer scouting a location for a science fiction film, a CIA agent launches a dangerous operation to rescue six Americans in Tehran during the U.S. hostage crisis in Iran in 1979.
Outside a movie premiere, enthusiastic fan Peppy Miller literally bumps into the swashbuckling hero of the silent film, George Valentin. The star reacts graciously and Peppy plants a kiss on his cheek as they are surrounded by photographers. The headlines demand: "Who's That Girl?" and Peppy is inspired to audition for a dancing bit-part at the studio. However as Peppy slowly rises through the industry, the introduction of talking-pictures turns Valentin's world upside-down. Written by
In the restaurant scene where Peppy is giving an interview, there is a shot from behind where the person wearing the headset has just one ear covered by the headset. In the next shot from the front both his ears are covered. See more »
I really don't get it. My wife and I went to see The Artist this past Saturday and I was left with an overwhelming feeling of "meh." Which is really surprising, given the almost universal, glowing praise this film has been getting--what with Golden Globe awards and Oscar nominations, etc (not to mention all the 10-star reviews here on IMDb).
I just didn't see anything special here. I mean, they filmmakers did a fairly good job of recreating a silent film, but they didn't take it any further than that. The plot, acting, etc, was no better or worse than a real silent film. I've seen many much, much better silent films on TCM's Silent Sundays each weekend. Those who are gushing over this movie have apparently not seen very many real silent films from the 20s. If they had, I think they'd have found this film kind of a "been there, seen that" kind of experience as I did. Or maybe this Artist-Praise-Hysteria is mostly the result of folks desperately wanting to jump onto the bandwagon of the newest "cool" thing.
The thing that bothered me most (besides the stretches of tedium) was that the cinematography was distractingly flat and gray--there were no real blacks and no real whites. I understand from articles I've read that this low-contrast, glowy B&W was intentional. But I didn't like it. Just looked like it was poorly shot with a bad video camera with the contrast turned all the way down. (this wasn't helped by the fact that the theatre I saw it in now presents all their "films" via digital projection--a process that, in my opinion, has NOT been perfected yet and is still too "low res" for cinema).
All in all, "The Artist" should be nothing more than a minor, vaguely interesting experiment that would have had a better home on video. How it has become an indie sensation with Oscar nominations is a totally mysterious to me. Wonder how much money it took to convince us all that is was a masterpiece?
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