Thursday, March 01, 2012

'The Artist': Silence is Golden afterall



Punch dialogues, song and dance sequences or shrilling drama are the usual ingredients of a movie that lingers in the viewer’s minds for a long period of time. It is of a rare occasion where a silent film manages to capture the hearts of millions. It takes immense talent to convey a lot through facial expressions alone. It deserves nothing less than a standing ovation if it has managed to sweep 5 Oscars to its credit. Michel Hazanavicius's film 'The Artist has exactly done that and more.

George Valentin (Jean Dujardin) is a successful silent movie star. On the eve of his premiere, he encounters a wide eyed fan namely Peppy Miller (Berenice Bejo). She accidently drops her autograph book and Valentine graciously picks it up for her. The next day, she finds herself captured in photograph with the reigning star. As a struggling artist, Miller manages to catch the attention of Valentin and soon she becomes the next sensation with her trademark beauty spot drawn by George Valentin.

Two years later, the production house announces the end of silent films which Valentin dismisses as a passing phase. He attempts to produce his own silent film fails as he finds himself at the brink of bankruptcy. After auctioning his belongings, Valentin has only his faithful dog (Uggie) as his constant companion. Depression sets in as he sets fire to his film reels and almost falls prey to the flames. Uggie attracts help and Valentin is hospitalized and later helped by Miller.

Obliging to Miller's helping hand, Valentin soon finds himself casted in a musical with the former and the movie ends with a charming tap dance and the only 2 word dialogue.

The Artist boasts of brilliant direction, incredible performances and captures the emotions in a beautiful manner. A few scenes make the viewer’s lose their heart out to the film. The scene where Uggie runs for help is one such instance which dwells on the fact that Dogs are indeed man's most faithful companions. Jean Dujardin emphasizes the fact that silence speaks more than words could say. It’s a rarity to see such quality of films grace the movie halls. Possessing an old world charm of silence and black and white images, The Artist proves to be a must watch for those seeking something out of the ordinary.

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