The Artist: Film #121 of Film 365

Wednesday 11th January 2012

Director: Michel Hazanavicius
Year: 2011
Stars: Jean Dujardin, Berenice Bejo, John Goodman, James Cromwell

I was a little sceptical going to see this movie, but I was also intrigued. There's been a lot of press coverage for The Artist, and a lot of very positive reviews. Part of me wondered if this was simply because it's a silent, black and white movie - and critics and the press loved it just because it reminded them of the good ol' days. But as a film fan, it got me curious, so I risked going to the cinema to see it...

... and loved it. The Artist is a really good movie, and it uses sound especially to great effect. That might seem odd considering we're talking about a silent movie, but in order to create a silent movie for the 2010s, you at least need a score. Old movies would have had musicians playing along to the images in the actual theatres, so a silent movie of today needs to recreate this somehow - and it seems unlikely we're going to get musicians into the cinemas (much as I personally would love that).

This review so far probably sounds like I also loved The Artist because it's a silent, black and white movie. I actually loved it because it tells a good story in a very unique, interesting way. The story is all about a silent movie actor who suffers when talkies become popular, and his protégée, who benefits greatly from the same thing. So it being in black and white, and silent, fits the story perfectly - but doesn't take anything at all away from the movie.

The movie loses half a star simply because I don't think it's the kind of film I would watch over and over again. Other than that, it's a brilliant movie and comes highly recommended.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

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I live in Bristol with my husband Dan (who I married in July 2007), my son Joe (born 2012) and daughter Jess (born 2015). I work at UWE (the University of the West of England) in Bristol as a Research and Open Access Librarian. I'm orginally from Exeter, so moving back to Bristol is a bit like coming home - especially as I studied for my undergraduate degree here (also at UWE). I love travelling and movies, although I get to do a lot less of both since the birth of our children. Although we have still managed to fit in holidays to the Isles of Scilly, Chamonix and a summer in California since Joe was born.