Cinema-goers complain that silent Oscar hope The Artist has no dialogue
THE Artist is being tipped to collect a raft of Baftas – but some cinemagoers in UK are demanding their money back because it is a silent film.
The tribute to 1920s Hollywood, the black and white movie has already won three Golden Globe awards for its dazzling portrayal of the pre-talkie era.
But audiences at some Odeon Cinemas are unimpressed by the homage to the "Golden Age" of silent films and a smaller-than-usual screen.
Film-fan Nicola Shearer, 25, attended a screening at Odeon Liverpool One after a wave of complaints. She was asked by cinema staff if she knew "it is a silent film".
English graduate Nicola, from Liverpool, said: "Of course I knew it was and I asked the usher why she wanted to know.
The spokesman said: "Odeon Liverpool One can confirm it has issued a small number of refunds to guests who were unaware that The Artist was a silent film.
"The cinema is happy to offer guests a refund on their film choice is they raise concern with a member of staff within 10 minutes of the film starting."
The first award-winning silent film in 90 years stars Jean Dujardin as fading leading man George Valentin at the beginning of the end for the silent film era, Hollywood 1927.
French actress Berenice Bejo also stars as the young dancer Peppy Miller who is destined for fame and a threat to Valentin's limelight.
Famous faces John Goodman, L.A. Confidential star James Cromwell, Malcolm McDowell and Penelope Ann Miller are in supporting roles.
Director Michel Hazanavicius's acclaimed tale was named Best Musical or Comedy along with Best Score – beating Oscar-winning composer Trent Reznor's soundtrack for The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.
Dujardin won Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy for his performance and he also won the Best Actor Award at the Cannes Film Festival 2011.
The Artist is now tipped for Oscar glory after the Golden Globe wins but box office figures might put a stop to a renaissance of silent films.
Since its release in November, The Artist has grossed just $14m and earned $2m net profit from combined ticket sales in the US, the UK and France.