I have seen many fine films in the past year, including 50/50, The Descendants, and Hugo, but none of them can match the brilliant perfection of The Artist. Hardly a single word is spoken throughout the film, but this cinematic masterpiece is so excellent, The Artist is my definitive choice finest motion picture of 2011.
Berenice Bejo will absolutely steal your heart as starlet Peppy Miller. She is dazzling and spectacular. Jean Dujardin is wonderful as George Valentin, a famous silent movie actor whose career is threatened by the onset of “talkies.” His four-legged sidekick, Uggie is hilarious and steals nearly every scene he appears in.
Largely filmed in Belgium and California by a French movie company with actors from many nations, The Artist is truly a multi-cultural motion picture. Both John Goodman and James Cromwell are terrific in their roles and represent the states well.
One of my favorite aspects of the film was the way the story unfolded through subtle visual imagery. For example, each time a motion picture name was displayed during the film, it’s title was a metaphor for the scene. Furthermore, cinematographer Guillaume Schiffman deserves the Oscar for creating a shimmering black and white film that has an amazing knack for vivid images that make you forget it is a black and white film.
I loved this movie – it is a magical treasure that takes you back in time to the late 1920s and early 1930s. Above all, it is a love story. A love story where the emotions and body language of the actors portray the beauty of timeless love.
Please go see The Artist in the theater as it is meant to be seen – it is an amazing visual cinematic treat for all. Below is the trailer from the film.