life in and around NYC is insane

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Movie review -- "The Artist"

You drive to your local Multiplex.  You've ordered your tickets on line so you skip the box office and head straight to the refreshment counter.  You can season your popcorn with a variety of toppings. You think about bottled water but order a Diet Coke instead.

The ticket taker has a box for 3D glasses beside her, for another movie. Your movie is in a theater with stadium seating -- the seats even have cupholders for that giant soda. You are reminded several times during the previews to silence your cell phone.

And then the feature presentation begins, and you are transported back to 1927, when silent movies were king.

"The Artist" is a silent movie. It tells the story of George Valentin, a silent movie star who refuses to transition to the talkies.  It is done in the style of the films being made at the time.  It salutes not only the great movies of the 20's and 30's, but I also saw elements from "Singin' In The Rain" and even Mel Brooks' "Silent Movie".  Brooks' movie was a parody, of course, but "The Artist" is more of a dramady -- a serious story line lightened with comedic elements.

Although I've seen silent movies before, it's been awhile.  It was an adjustment to watch a silent movie . . .without dialogue you have to really look at the actors to understand what's happening. Your focus as a viewer is different. How the actors present their characters is amazing.

I really enjoyed the movie, more for the storyline and characters than for the novelty of a silent movie.  It truly earned its Golden Globe.

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