‘The Artist’ and a travel back in time

The fact that a movie like “The Artist” got all the most important Oscars this year gives me hope that contemporary cinema is not in such a bad shape yet. Of course everyone can disagree, it’s just a matter of taste, but I personally can’t find any pleasure in watching high-tech 3D movies full of special effects and nothing more. Sometimes I watch them, but only when I need lower-quality entertainment, it’s obvious that one can’t watch only dramas and super ambitious movies because it can be too tiring. I also don’t want to sound like some arrogant expert in cinema, after all I’m a fan of silent movies which were often very silly and far from being ambitious, but to me this 3D era is the beginning of lowering the level of movies in general. There’s more effects and computers doing all the job than real art and real acting. This is why I was very glad to hear about a French-Belgian co-production that laughs in a way at our super developped technology. “The Artist” proves that even without sound, without complicated effects we can get a huge dose of true emotions and good entertainment. It is also a tribute to all stars of the silent era who are forgotten and laughed at by many. Of course the story of actors unable to find themselves in the new sound era is known from earlier movies such as ‘Singing in the rain’ or ‘Sunset Boulevard’ but there was no better idea than showing the drama of many silent movie stars using a technique from their times. That was a stroke of genius. I read comments on biggest Polish web sites today and unfortunately the majority of opinions were negative about the decision the the Academy, they were mostly like ‘it is sick to give Oscars to a boring and silly silent movie in the era of great effects and possibilities’. Well, it’s a pity. In my naivety I was sure that people will appreciate ‘The Artist’ for giving us the opportunity to travel in time. It’s a movie full of emotions and since it’s silent, it demands good acting skills. It cannot be whoever from Hollywood playing with a cute face but no talent as it’s usually nowadays. That’s why I generally don’t like and don’t care about Oscars, I hardly ever like the awarded movies. This year I exceptionally do. And I’m glad that European film industry is still at such a high level.

One more thing: I recently discovered at amazon.com a freshly-released DVD set with 4 early Pola Negri movies, two of which has never been released before! Shame on Poland that i can’t buy it in here, after all we should be proud of our Hollywood star, but I’m used to it. There’s not a single pre-war Polish movie hit released on DVD. Those who survived the war used to be broadcoasted on TV in the past and I luckily own them all, ripped from TV to PC format. This is how Polish fans of old movies have to manage…