Inside this week | Pardon Monsieurs

February 11th, 2012 11:30 pm| by admin

I’m surprised to see that this week’s films, The Artist and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy , have such low ratings given how high the praise has been elsewhere. Metacritic, for example, which is surely the most reliable online movie barometer, gives them 89 and 85 respectively, the second and fourth highest scores of the last three months.

And I have to admit that I would have been inclined to jump on the bandwagon and give The Artist six stars.  It’s a massive 1/5 favourite to win the Oscar later this month; it’s probably technically very good; you have to applaud the bravery of, in this day and age, making a silent movie; it will undoubtedly make Francophiles of us all as we increase our daily usage of “Oh, la, la” and “Mais oui” despite it not even having any words; and it’s even got the cuddly toy factor  – more column inches have been written about the unfortunate curtailment of the career of the lead dog (a Jack Russell no less: nippy little bastards with a

Napoleon complex) than the ongoing atrocities in the horn of Africa. And don’t forget the reviewer’s obligation to compare like with like. Because, whichever way you look at it, it’s one of the best silent movies of the last 80 years, along with Mel Brooks’ Silent Movie (1976), in which the only line is delivered by mime artist Marcel Marceau – how droll!

But it would be an insincere opinion. I wouldn’t watch a silent movie unless you paid me – funnily enough, while I have a similar aversion [correction made] to opera, I have actually seen La Traviata  and it is the perfect pre-Valentine mood-setter until she finds out she’s got tuberculosis – which fortunately in our case is what we routinely do to obtain reviews.

But while it doesn’t look good us giving three stars to the winner of the best picture Oscar for the second time in three years (the other was The Hurt Locker, which won for 2009 despite being released outside the US in 2008 – see G20 for our film of the week), I applaud our reviewer for his stance.

Talking’s good. To echo a line from Diamonds are Forever, if god had wanted us to make silent movies, he wouldn’t have given us vocal cords.

Bohr, photographed in 1948 at Princeton University aged 63, saw out the latter years of his career in the US, promoting the peaceful application of atomic energy (photo: Princeton University/American Institute of Physics/Science Photo Library)
Atomic scientist’s quantum leap changed the world of physics forever
For such a tiny country, Denmark certainly punches above its weight, and th...
A tragedy in Copenhagen this afternoon (photo:PDP)
Mother of four stabbed to death in Copenhagen
A 51-year-old woman has been stabbed to death in an apartment in Nørrebro ...
German conductor Hartmut Haenchen warned against cuts from the Royal Orchestra (photo:  Riccardo Musacchio)
Musicians and maestros condemn cuts at the Royal Danish Theatre
The musicians at Det Kongelige Kapel, which is internationally known and ac...
Not rolling tomorrow (photo: Hochgeladen von Heb)
The postman may not ring at all in Copenhagen tomorrow
Some Copenhagen residents will see neither post nor packages tomorrow as ab...
Grejfreak has moved on from its original idea of selling military gear (photo: Bonzo)
Aarhus veteran cashing in on military gear
Kristian Juel Rasmussen came back from his deployment with the Danish milit...
Basking sharks are rare in Danish waters these days (photo: Anders Peter Schultz, Statens Naturhistoriske Museum)
Massive shark caught off Danish coast
A huge four-metre long shark was caught in Kattegat Strait off the coast o...