Despite all the glitz and glamour Hollywood has tossed at us, it can be one of the cruelest places to be. We have seen many actors appear on the cover People in the next big blockbuster. Those actors we love though are not immortal. Some of them can create a lasting career, but some of them are tossed aside, and even forgotten. The Silent period is a prime example of how technology changed everything. Once sound came into the pictures, many actors that were silent could not make the transition. One of these actors is George Valentin.
Of course this guy was not real, but he is the slitting image of many silent men. He’s got a handsome face and has a heroes build. He is the subject of one of the best movies of the year, The Artist. This film doesn’t just pay tribute to those lost actors; it pays tribute to silent film completely. This film has the same look of a silent film, creating a classic black and white, using faces to express emotion, and almost completely having no dialogue.
The Artist, as I said, focuses on the fictional actor, George Valentin. He is the biggest star in his time. He has everything he could ever want; great work, fans, a big house, money, and even a beautiful wife. He’s even humble about his career. I like this guy because he really loves doing this and wants to please his fans. I think most modern actors wish they could be this guy; someone whose nice, but can maintain a good image to the business heads.
Things completely change when George sees footage for a sound film. Of course he laughs it off and thinks this is a fad. But of course, his studio shuts down all silent film work. With all of these new talkies emerging, George refuses to speak. He witnesses the rising star, Peppy Miller. He met her earlier in the film as a fan, now becoming bigger then him. Out with the old and in with the new.
I’m gonna stop telling the story here and let you see the rest. The movie goes further into the transition of sound and the fading of this once big named star. At one time it’s very heart breaking to see him losing his ability to do something he loves. But at the same, we question why he never wants to make that change. The Artist follows George and Peppy as these two souls experience different sides to the old Hollywoodland.
This is an absolute must for any fan of film. Not just for the older crowd, but even teenagers’ will like this. I just might recommend this for families. It’s a nice story about the risk these actors are willing to take to stay in the public eye.
I'll give this movie a masterful 5 tap shoes out of 5. Please don't give this the silent treatment and see this in theaters. Silent film still has an art.