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Pete

The Artist

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Firstly sorry if this thread exists, I did search and was surprised there wasn't. It's been nominated for several oscars and many are saying film of the year already, well last year.

Anyway, saw this last night in a packed cinema and loved it. The silence isn't just a gimmick but is used in the film to great effect, the best scene in the film does this very well. The story is an old fashioned love story with some darker moments and it feels just like a film made in the era it's set. And it's got a really awesome dog. I left the cinema feeling lovely about the world. Brilliant.

The scene where the two leads fall for each other is just magic - I can see the argument for saying silent cinema has it's merits. I'm not particulary au fait with silent cinema though so it would be nice to hear some thoughts of the more cine-literate among you.

Why no thread? Anyone else seen it? If you haven't go!

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I saw a trailer a couple of weeks ago and wondered if it was actually silent or just the trailer done that way. Interesting to hear it is.

As for silent cinema, I read somewhere that when talkies came along, they were seen as worthless and mostly destroyed or otherwise lost through carelessness. There's more lost than still exist.

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That's really what the film is about interestingly. Just saying now on the radio that the dog can't be nominated for a Bafta! To be fair he would win.

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I saw it yesterday, and I'm afraid it bored me. Too soft-hearted for me, no edge, not funny enough (although I liked the percussive joke in the inter-titles near the end.) And Singing' in the Rain is possibly my favourite film. The talkies of the thirties that starred actresses trying to make it in Hollywood or Broadway were faster, funnier, and harder, with the depression giving them real danger.

I don't like dogs in films unless it's Asta from the Thin Man, but this was a good one. I liked the dancing too. Was that the Bradbury building in one scene?

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As for silent cinema, I read somewhere that when talkies came along, they were seen as worthless and mostly destroyed or otherwise lost through carelessness. There's more lost than still exist.

Kind of true, although some excellent ones still exist in amazingly good quality. If anyone fancies a bit of silent cinema watching I highly recommend Murnau's 'Sunrise', Fritz Lang's 'Metropolis' and Jean Epstein's 'Cœur Fidele', all of which have recently been released on Blu-ray and are fantastic. Not strictly a silent film but one with a little talking is Fritz Lang's 'M', which is also out on Blu-ray and well worth a watch :). There are loads on Youtube as well - some I guess must have lapsed into public domain, some possibly not. Searching for any of the directors above will probably yield results.

As for ones that got lost along the way somewhere, Murnau's 'Four Devils' is probably the most famous of the time. Most copies were destroyed in a fire at Fox's film vault in the late 1930's; supposedly the final reel of it was thrown off a ship into the Pacific by one of the actresses in it who thought she'd given a bit of a cack performance!

And now I've bored everyone to sleep, I shall take my leave :coffee: ... especially as I've not got round to seeing The Artist yet :)

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I saw a trailer a couple of weeks ago and wondered if it was actually silent or just the trailer done that way. Interesting to hear it is.

As for silent cinema, I read somewhere that when talkies came along, they were seen as worthless and mostly destroyed or otherwise lost through carelessness. There's more lost than still exist.

Wikipedia says "90 percent of all American silent films and 50 percent of American sound films made before 1950 are lost films."

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I saw it yesterday, and I'm afraid it bored me. Too soft-hearted for me, no edge, not funny enough (although I liked the percussive joke in the inter-titles near the end.) And Singing' in the Rain is possibly my favourite film. The talkies of the thirties that starred actresses trying to make it in Hollywood or Broadway were faster, funnier, and harder, with the depression giving them real danger.

I don't like dogs in films unless it's Asta from the Thin Man, but this was a good one. I liked the dancing too. Was that the Bradbury building in one scene?

The funny point is interesting. I guess because of its form it's stuck between providing broader/physical laughs (the dog, mainly) and knowing/smart-ass laughs. I've seen it twice - first time at the London Film Festival back in October where I found it uproariously funny; the jokes at the form's expense are pretty much bread and butter for a festival crowd. Second time I saw it on Friday in a matinee showing and, in a much quieter theatre with a less 'festival-y' crowd I didn't find myself laughing half as much. I wanted to, but wasn't keen on being that guy in the cinema. The dog still got laughs, but there were a lot of jokes that people either didn't pick on or didn't find funny, which lessened it for me a bit.

I guess, being a film about films, it really depends on how much you know and how funny you find that kind of knowing/geeky laughs that the film relies on quite a bit. A festival crowd lapped it up, but on friday there wasn't even a titter at the

'With pleasure' ['/french accent]

gag at the end.

On the soft-headed and 'no edge' charges, I completely agree with you there, but that's kind of the point of it for me. Both times I've caught it I've nearly skipped out of the cinema and been stuck with a silly grin on my face for quite a while; the last 10 minutes is probably up there as one of the most joyous scenes i've seen in a film. It's got a lot of heart and warmth, so it's not the kind of empty pastiche it could easily be, but it's not what I would call a 'Serious' film - not that it really matters. For me it's a nice homage that makes you feel good about the world. The kind of film I'd put on when I wanted to feel good, not challenged. Chicken soup in cinema form.

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Not seen The Artist yet and sadly it probably won't end up playing here at all. However, if people are looking for silent film recommendations then there was quite a good forum topic from five years ago (here) and Carl Theodor Dreyer's Vampyr is a must see (my review).

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I really liked it. I didn't get most of the jokes (or at least I didn't notice getting them) but I thought the leads were charming, and it was witty and cool.

The conflict didn't really drag on too long and it was lovely and uplifting. Peppy Miller was hot too.

Sweet/10.

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I loved it, best film I've seen at the cinema in the last 12 months, or at least the one which I enjoyed the most and found most affecting. I cried which for me is a real rarity. I saw it at the Renoir, Russell Square, the home of the art-film snobs but people seemed genuinely enraptured, they weren't just laughing at the cinephile references (which I mostly didn't get).

Completely agree with Little Joe about the fact that the plot is well worn doesn't matter. It's intentionally playing it fairly straight but with little things here and there which let you know that it's a modern film rather than a complete pastiche. The fact that you know what's coming and it's still emotional make it all the more impressive. Would it still work so effectively as homage if it followed a less conventional plot structure? I'm not sure.

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I keep seeing a advert for this but it doesn't tell me anything at all about the film, just people going "Hurrrrh, this like real good". This seems to be a trend with trailers these days, I never watched Drive due to the dismal advertising of it (although I will get round to watching that very soon).

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I keep seeing a advert for this but it doesn't tell me anything at all about the film, just people going "Hurrrrh, this like real good". This seems to be a trend with trailers these days, I never watched Drive due to the dismal advertising of it (although I will get round to watching that very soon).

I've not seen The Artist yet so I can't tell if the marketing is accurate enough or not (but the trailer does at least give a good indication of the type of story it is and the main arc of the plot - big silent star plucks woman from obscurity, his star wanes and hers rises) but I'm surprised you said Drive's marketing was bad.

Firstly, it is a brilliantly edited trailer and secondly it probably tells you too much about the film.

I am pretty surprised you feel the trend with trailers is telling you less about the film because if anything I would say it has gone massively in the other direction with trailers telling you the entire film in two and a half minutes negating any need to see the actual film.

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I am pretty surprised you feel the trend with trailers is telling you less about the film because if anything I would say it has gone massively in the other direction with trailers telling you the entire film in two and a half minutes negating any need to see the actual film.

I hate this trend. It really ruins movies. the Rise of the Planet of the apes trailer ruined the movie for me.

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I think the great strength of this film is that it doesn't try to impress film buffs but sets out to tell a good old fashioned story. My non film geek friends afterwards commented they were glad it wasn't pretentious wank like they thought it might be.

And despite the predictable plot there were gasps at one section

BANG!

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hmm, I saw this film last night, and while techinically it was very good, and passed itself off fantastically as a movie from that era, I couldn't help thinking the film itself was pretty boring and didn't grab me. I looked around the cinema and thought to myself, if they re released a fantastic silent movie, such as The last command or Dr Mabuse, how many of these people would go and see it?

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I'm definitely in the 'this wasn't that great, and not a tenth as smart as it thinks it is - go and watch sone actuals good films from the era instead' crowd. As for the 'peep behind the curtain' aspect - lots if films have done it better, even Attenborough's bloated Chaplin, I reckon.

The thought of a packed picture house of people snickering self-satisfiedly at details like the

Hollywoodland sign

makes me want to self-eviscerate.

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I saw this last night, and really enjoyed it. I’m almost completely ignorant of silent films, so I guess part of the enjoyment was the novelty of seeing how a scene could play out completely without dialogue and still be understood, but it was a fantastically engaging and moving film in its own right. I especially liked the way that they embraced the conventions of silent films in some scenes (or, at least, what I understand to be the conventions) and subverted them in others. I loved the gag at the start where

John Goodman’s character was clearly saying “What the FUCK is going on?”

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I found it enjoyable but way, way, way too overhyped. I was mainly excited at the prospect of the dog, with all the "give the dog an oscar" rubbish that's been spouted but it was barely in it apart from that bit at the end. Eddie does more in a 20 minute Frasier episode. I've been introduced to Buster Keaton's films recently and they are heads and shoulders above this.

The one thing I would say is our local independant cinema has been sold out for the last two weeks and has had to put on extra showings to cater for the demand so I'm glad it's brought them a lot of business.

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I saw this last night, and really enjoyed it. I’m almost completely ignorant of silent films, so I guess part of the enjoyment was the novelty of seeing how a scene could play out completely without dialogue and still be understood, but it was a fantastically engaging and moving film in its own right. I especially liked the way that they embraced the conventions of silent films in some scenes (or, at least, what I understand to be the conventions) and subverted them in others. I loved the gag at the start where

John Goodman’s character was clearly saying “What the FUCK is going on?”

Yo, are spoiler tags not working for other people? The button, I mean. I can't open half the spoilered sections recently.

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