The Artist Reviews
As it opens, we're watching an audience watch a silent adventure film, and in a funny way we spend the rest of the movie watching ourselves get swept up in conventions we can see through.
In a time when movies often are sonic assaults, and meaning can be lost amid the clatter of explosions, gunshots and screeching cars, The Artist has an utterly beguiling purity.
Michel Hazanavicius's black-and-white throwback to cinema's silent era may seem steeped in fusty nostalgia, but it glitters and gleams with utterly of-the-moment wit and romantic zest.
An undeniably charming homage to Hollywood in the late 1920s, The Artist will probably be the most successful silent movie since the days of the Gish sisters. It might also be the first silent film many of its viewers have ever seen.
A silent movie shot in sumptuous black-and-white, no less. A silent flick made with not a jot of distancing winking, but instead born of a heady affection for a bygone, very bygone, era of filmmaking.
Unfettered by irony, inspiring the kind of spontaneous emotional response we yearn for at the multiplex, [it] immerses us in joyful illusion, a world of movies within movies.
This effort often manages to duplicate the magical pantomime of the era; a lovely scene in which Bejo drapes herself in the arms of a hung jacket as if it were a human lover could have come straight out of a Marion Davies picture.