Box art for The Artist

The Artist

comedy, drama, romance


Hollywood 1927. George Valentin (Jean Dujardin) is a silent movie superstar. The advent of the talkies will sound the death knell for his career and see him fall into oblivion.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
    98%
  • Audience Score
    88%

common sense

ON for kids age 13
Consumerism
0 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
3 out of 5
Language
1 out of 5
Positive messages
2 out of 5
Positive role models
2 out of 5
Sex
1 out of 5
Violence
3 out of 5

Loving tribute to silent films has a few tense moments.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Artist -- a black-and-white homage to Hollywood's silent movies of the 1920s -- is nearly silent itself, relying on characters' gestures and expressions, the musical score, and occasional title cards to tell its story of fame, fortune, and friendship. As such, it might not appeal to many kids, but those who really love movies may be drawn in by its references, setting, and old-fashioned celebration of cinema. There are a few tense/violent scenes, including one in which a distraught character puts a gun in his own mouth and another in which a fire gets out of control. You can also expect lots of era-accurate smoking and a fair bit of drinking, including some overindulgence. But there's virtually no language or sexual content, and in the end characters learn important lessons about the value of friendship and humility.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about why the filmmakers would want to make a silent movie today, when technology is so different. What's the appeal? Would the movie have been as effective if it was about silent movies but not silent itself?
  • Who do you think The Artist is intended to appeal to? How can you tell?
  • How does the fact that the movie is silent impact the way the actors behave on screen? What do you think would have been different if the movie had more dialogue?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

  • Tomatometer®

    98%
    reviews counted: 21
    see all The Artist reviews
  • Audience

    88%

Top Critic Reviews

Fresh: "The Artist" is such an engaging, delightful film that, if you like movies, you will walk out of the theater with a smile. You just will; it's that inspired.

- Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic, Thursday, December 22, 2011

Fresh: The Artist is charming as all get-out, a delightful little movie about the movies.

- Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News, Thursday, December 22, 2011

Fresh: It's a rocket to the moon fueled by unadulterated joy and pure imagination.

- Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune, Thursday, December 22, 2011

Audience Reviews

5 stars

Enchanting and beautiful film about success, jealousy, technology, the movie industry and (of course) love; the scene in which Peppy (Berenice Bejo) manipulates one arm of George's (Jean Valentin) suit on the hanger is one for the ages. A film that gets at what it is about movies that so affects us, and one with compelling relationships between characters and a hero who's always on the knife-edge of success vs. failure. A fun throwback, too - even if Singin' in the Rain kind of did this first, it's a brilliant contemporary approach.

- danperry17, Sunday, December 16, 2012

4 stars

It's straightforward, predictable, and not entirely deserving of its Academy commendation, but 'The Artist' is ultimately a delightful piece of escapism. It's a well-made and audacious homage to the first stars of Hollywood. It's a joy to watch, I became aware that I had a smile on my face throughout the first twenty minutes, which was thanks to a combination of the jovial soundtrack, 'Uggie' the talented Jack Russell, and also I think Dujardin's rather infectious smile. However, it's slightly darker than you may have imagined. The film concerns George Valentin (Jean Dujardin), a silent-movie star whose wellbeing is jeopardised upon the advent of the 'talkies'. So, as you can imagine, the film is as much a drama as it is a romantic comedy, if not more. It really is remarkable what the cast have achieved with this film. I'm sure many people would have their reservations about this silent film, but I'm certain they'd be engrossed from the start, completely indifferent that it's missing a fundamental dimension. Of course, silent films aren't completely silent, they're scored, and 'The Artist' has a delightfully expressive soundtrack. Its energetic, upbeat tracks are my favourite; they have your torso gently swaying and your head bobbing jovially. It's ultimately a very nice little film with good performances from everyone, particularly from Dujardin. Though he is great in it, I feel his Oscar wasn't fairly earned; his job was very different to the other contenders that year. However, if there was an Oscar for 'Best Smile', he would've won without a doubt.

- Callahan441, Monday, October 22, 2012

3 stars

3 3/4's..DO NOT WATCH THIS if you are sleepy. Personally, I had to take a nap halfway through, so this one is a tough one for me to rate. BUT, I do applaud the originality (applied to todays films). I do appreciate the quality. I did think that it was very nice. I love old movies (not necessarily silent films), so that part was easy for me. I really wish that I could rate it more, but I found myself bored a lot of the time.........AND it makes me laugh that they sell the soundtrack to this. Music to nap by?..lol

- itsjustme2004, Tuesday, October 2, 2012