Directed and written by Michel Hazanavicius, this silent film, The Artist is filled with comedy, romance and drama set in Hollywood during the late 1920s.
The Artist shows several aspects from the early times including the flappers and marquee lifestyle.
In 1927, a silent movie star George Valentin (Jean Dujardin) asseses his powerful reputation in the business. Valentin has many loving supporters who adore his performance. Yet after posing for pictures with a young lady, things begin to change. Lost in oblivion, Valentin is confused by the misconception of what’s going on which disrupts his marriage.
Soon he finds that the young lady, Peppy Miller (Bérénice Bejo) is an aspiring dancer trying to make her big break. After the published photos, the publicity sparks her audition where she meets Valentin once more when the two share a surprising encounter.
After some time, Al Zimmer (John Goodman), a typical big time cigar smoking studio boss arranges a meeting with Valentin to discuss technological improvements. Valentin can’t imagine the innovative changes to his work and dreads how sounds would be exaggerated and altered to suit. After his suspicious behavior, Valentin is made redundant as Zimmer is going in a different direction.
Valentin finds a drinking as a comfortable vice to handle the truth of progression in the industry.The star falls into worse condition after the October 1929 Wall Street Stock market crash. He starts to auction off most of his possessions. This leads to drunken rage and fire use in an attempt to end his misery. In a dramatic scence, Valentin watches as his life burns before his eyes.
Meanwhile, Peppy has been following Valentin’s actions while becoming successful. She visits him in the hospital to declare her love. Peppy helps him to recover from the tragedy and find a reason to live again despite his desire of death. Valentin was the reason Peppy made it into the business and for that she assists him in rekindling his old routes for the better digital age.
The Artist is up fo numerous nominations, leading the BAFTA nominations according to the BBC. The results remain to be seen.