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Reviews & Ratings for
The Artist More at IMDbPro »

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Modern audiences could learn a thing or two

Author: Mat Snowie from Canada
5 September 2013

Most people do not watch silent films. In fact, most people do not watch black and white films. Judging by the box office lately it seems people are even giving up on theatrical 2D. So I know I have my work cut out for me when I say you must go see The Artist as soon as possible. It is silent, black and white, 2D and not even in widescreen. And it is going to be crowned the Best Picture of the year by the Academy Awards; if it doesn't I will have serious reservations about defending the Oscars' integrity.

It is the story of George Valentin (Jean Dujardin), a silent film star who is pushed aside at the start of the sound era; the classic rouge hero is quickly forgotten as new star Peppy Miller (Bérénice Bejo) takes centre stage working for Al Zimmer (John Goodman) and the Kinograph Studios.

All of the performances, with Dujardin and Bejo at the centre, make this an extremely relatable film. Even modern audiences expecting to be frustrated by the lack of dialogue will be surprised by the expressive storytelling power that this film delivers. An equal partner to the actors is the film's score by Ludovic Bource, and director Michel Hazanavicius uses the music or removes the music with elegant ease.

Many will claim it is for filmmakers and cinephiles only, but that is not true. Filmmakers and cinephiles are just at the head of the pack because they already watch silent films and understand that they should not be treated differently. A moment of silence will bring a hush to the audience, as it should, but that is no different than any other modern film. When a joke is funny, you can laugh. When a shock surprises you, you can gasp. A great film is a great film, and this uses every trick developed in a century of filmmaking to tell the most beautifully realized love letter to cinema I have ever seen. Only Hugo and Cinema Paradiso have come this close to recreating the exhilaration I remember from seeing my first movies.

This silent, black and white, full-frame movie is a delight. I will be going back to see it again. I will buy it on blu-ray. I will make everyone I know watch it because, believe me, it is breathtaking.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

rejuvenating non-verbal communication

Author: raamnar
2 September 2013

Invigorating look at the onset of cinema and the silent film era. However there was a nagging feeling that one was watching Wilder's classic 'Sunset Boulevard' with the protagonist's gender changed. Here the hero is a fading artist making a last attempt with his 'Tears of Love' A la "Salome' In the earlier film. Max's character is replaced by the loyal Stephan and the suicidal tendency of the of the main lead etc. give a feeling of nostalgia.However all said and done this is a classic on its own merits.The beauty spot metaphor plays beautifully and the one act of 'Tap Dancing' not requiring the voice but has the sound is brilliant.....On the whole a fine effort rightly deserving an Oscar.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

A breath of fresh air

Author: januaryman-1 from Stephens County, OK
30 August 2013

My first 10 rating. The Artist is wonderfully refreshing. The black-and-white presentation takes you to a past time but the movie retains a vivacity that is lost with the films of the silent film era. Know what I mean? Watching a silent film from back in the day is always like watching home movies of your dead relatives. Not so with The Artist. It is very much alive, thanks to the standout work of Dujardin, Bejo, Cromwell, Goodman, and Uggie. Bejo especially adds infectious vitality to her role. Dujardin is also quite likable. Cromwell is a sentimental and loyal manservant. Goodman uses his talent at facial expressions to great effect. Uggie? Who wouldn't want a dog like him? He is a role model for canines everywhere. This film is unique. Imitators will likely fail,but The Artist is a winner.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Loved it

Author: Jeff Chen from United States
20 August 2013

Not knowing much besides the good rating on IMDb, I decided to give it a go and I'm glad I did. This film is so different from the crap that rolls through Hollywood these days. Even without words, I connected with George Valentin throughout his fall from grace and his redemption. Refreshing film overall. The Artist is funny and dark, and everyone included, even his dog, played such pivotal roles. Who needs movies with a dozen stars with zero plot when there's gems like this.

George Valentin (Jean Dujardin) is the king of silent movies in Hollywood in 1927 and he knows it. Audiences just adore everything George is a part of. Along comes Peppy Miller (Bérénice Bejo) who you just know is going to be a huge star some day. George and Peppy work together on one film as George not only takes her under his wing, but an undeniable spark develops between the two. Silent movies cease to exist as talking pictures takes its place. George finds himself struggling for a purpose to live as his identity as a silent movie star fades into obscurity.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Aging Actors, Change, and Talkies make for a great time!

Author: RyanCShowers from United States
14 August 2013

Change. It's something that happens, sometimes reluctantly to people who have lived an event so long it becomes faded, out of date, and is being passed up by the wanting of "the new". Change is the central topic of The Artist. There was a time Hollywood was innocent, filled with lightness and fluff. The paparazzi weren't trying to tear actors images to pieces for no good reason. Movies were made for the sake of having a good time, not worrying about being the most financially successful or who will win the most Academy Awards. The Artist shows us that time, and though it's a delightful film, it does cross into some dark territory.

The Artist may look like is a bagatelle with no worries in the world, everyone is happy all the time. It does charm the smile right onto your face, but what surprised me is The Artist's gloomy periods of human struggle. The Artist also covers the subject of Hollywood Actors being discarded when their time is up. Studio executives treat actors like throwaway cards in their poker games. It's tragic when a person builds their entire life with one light guiding their every decision, then, without warning being dismissed forever. The smart choice The Artist makes is having a man experience this situation because it's cliché to think women only get this discrimination. It's the harsh fact of the entertainment business.

Yes, it does cover some deep thoughts about Hollywood, but the quality that distinguishes The Artist is the style in which the tells us the story to us. Back in the days when silent pictures were all the film world had, "talkies" were the films everyone was fascinated by. The Artist proves the irony of today's society being drawn to the silent picture approach. Silent characters allows the film score to become the life of the movie. The way we react depends on the score and what it tells us. The score works toward the making the images accessible to the audience, and the visuals are just as pleasing as the musical composition. The imagination and creativity used to plan out and project the images of this time are glowing left to right, in the stunning black and white photography.

The Artist's second life necessity to breathing is laughing. I felt like I was laying on a cloud and whenever they laugh, it's like you're being tickled with a me with a feather. It's a pleasure to sit through The Artist, you'll having a great time. The nostalgia for the days of silent movies is amplified even more through Jean Dujardin rocking the look of the classical actors. You have such fun watching Dujardin in the role, that you may not notice the acting the man has behind his character. He creates an uncompromising charm for the protagonist, as well as dwelling on the character's misfortunes in later scenes. Berenice Bejo is lovely in her role, as well, but doesn't quite have the well-rounded character Dujardin was given.

Make The Artist you're #ThrowbackThursday, because it glorifies and eventually tears down a significant time in the history of entertainment. Michel Hazanvicius directs his picture with all the gusto to make us enjoy the time we're spending with the characters. He doesn't smother the picture, instead just lets the picture live. The ending is perfectly executed, progressing the moving times in a cute and classy manner. As soon as I parted ways with The Artist, the more I reflected on the time I spent watching it, the more I found a deeper appreciation for it.

Rating: 8.5/10

Grade: A

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Brilliant old-fashioned black&white movie

Author: artistblazemind from France
12 August 2013

Despite of being shot recently, the movie brings back the atmoshpere of the traditional black&white movie in a brilliant way.

The main actor Jean Dujardin totally deserves his Oscar for his acting in this film and the main actress (whith whom he's already played other movies with) is very convincing as well.

The plot is easy to follow and overall the story is amusing and dramatic in the same time.

With a great cast and fantastic soundtrack, you won't get bored and enjoy this movie even if you're not an amateur of the black&white genre.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

A Vintage Tour That Guarantees To Put A Smile On Every Cinema Lover's Face.

Author: CinemaClown from India
9 August 2013

One of the most charming films of the 21st century that knows a magic trick to put a smile on every cinema lover out there, The Artist is a great tribute to the silent era of film industry and is filmed in such an enthralling manner that every frame pays homage to that golden period.

The first half of the film is an exquisite look at the early cinema industry and be it the imaginative direction & writing by Michael Hazanavicius, classic vintage cinematography or the outstanding performances from both Berenice Bejo & Jean Dujardin, everything about this film worked itself out amazingly well. The second half of the film drags to some extent but only for a while before it is up & running again until the final moments where it culminates on a high with a memorable & truly classic final shot.

Succeeding not only as a silent film but also as a heartfelt drama with romance at its heart & nostalgia written all over it, The Artist is a skilfully executed cinematic feat that kept a smile on my face throughout its runtime and most probably will do the same to you too. A beautiful cinema crafted by a passionate filmmaker just for the beauty of its historical era, this potent package is a must for all cinema lovers out there.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

A very original piece of story telling

Author: citizen-caveman from United Kingdom
8 August 2013

A genuine original, clever, witty and engaging - rather like me in fact.

Original and witty in the way The Artist tells its story and that is what makes it so engaging. The story about some of the biggest stars of the silent era being unable to make the transition to talkies is as old as the hills. This way of telling that story it is as fresh as a daisy.

The way the audience engages with the film is noticeably different. In places you're almost lip reading. The Artist also underlines the point that is the story and how it is told that makes the film and not colour, FX, 3D, etc.

The theme is how the world inevitably changes as some people benefit because of some change while others do not as they are unable to adapt. George Valentin's (Jean Dujardin) flaw that leads to his downfall is his overly conservative attitude and refusing to believe the tastes of the paying public are so very unlike his own (reminds me of a few film critics). As the paying public quickly take to talkies George rapidly becomes a dinosaur.

Of course it is essentially a love story. Berenice Bejo does a great job of playing Peppy Miller the reason why George gets his life back together.

The Artist is an uplifting tale told in an original way. The fact The Artist makes use of the conventions of the silent era suggests that it is not entirely forgotten.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

My rating: 9

Author: Vihren Mitev from Bulgaria
30 July 2013

Bravo for the movie! Very positive and interesting, this film takes us to a time of silent black and white movies. With the difference that the character in silent films loses his voice for a brief moment of time, and in the end everyone start speaking by making the transition from silent films by including speech in them.

The storyline revolves around the theme of love and reconciliation between the two types mentioned earlier movies. Directing shows interesting techniques as the main idea remains to return to the silent film in which the actors play similar to that of theatrical counterparts - it is much more expressive. Interesting experience is also the point at which the viewer hears sounds from the others in the room due to the lack of sound in the film.

The film is really interesting experience that will definitely knock out of the field of the dangerously capturing trivial.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Innovative and emotional

Author: David Tillman from United States
24 July 2013

First of all...I loved the very idea of doing a silent film in 2011, although I wondered if the director could carry it off. To my delight, he did. The actor's feelings and emotions were easily conveyed through the film without being campy, and I thought John Jujardin and Berenice Bejo were simply brilliant in their roles.

If if there was one thing about the film that bothered me, I think it would be how similar the story line felt to "Singin' In the Rain", which is one of my favorite films. It wasn't exactly the same, but it felt like a bit of a re-telling. Also, because the theme music from "Vertigo" is so incredibly familiar to me, I felt distracted when it started playing on the soundtrack ("hey, that doesn't belong there!). But beyond that, I was taken in from beginning to end. The Artist absolutely earned its Oscars.

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