The Artist

At the weekend we took ourselves off to Leavenheath where the village hall was screening The Artist.  The hall is part of the Suffolk Digital Cinema Network (a non-profit association) which encourages community film screenings across Suffolk.  Network members borrow digital projection equipment, and get advice and training on how to run properly-licensed screenings in their own venues. Members choose the films they show to meet the needs of their local audiences. There were just under fifty people in the audience and it all went very well. There was a interval during which we could buy drinks and ice creams. I fully recommend The Artist which is a 2011 French romantic comedy-drama film in the style of a black-and-white silent film and stars Jean Dujardin and Bérénice Bejo. The story takes place in Hollywood, between 1927 and 1932, and focuses on the relationship of an older silent film star and a rising young actress as silent cinema falls out of fashion and is replaced by the “talkies”. (A sort of Singing in the Rain without the wetness).  Some might argue that the real star of the film is Uggie, Dujardin’s Jack Russell .
Sound finally comes in as the film starts rolling for a dance scene with Dujardin and Bejo. Once the choreography is complete, the two dancers are heard panting, and this is only time in the film sound is heard coming from Bejo, who otherwise says nothing. The director of the musical calls out audibly, “Cut!” to which producer adds: “Perfect. Beautiful. Could you give me one more?” Dujardin, in his only audible line, replies “With pleasure!” revealing his strong French accent. The camera then pulls back to the sounds of the film crew as they prepare to shoot another take.
Well worth a trip to one of the villages and well worth seeing the film again

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