‘The Artist’ is New York critics best film of 2011

The New York Film Critics Circle on Tuesday named silent film “The Artist” the best movie of the year, and gave its top acting honors to Meryl Streep and Brad Pitt. Michel Hazanavicius won best director for “The Artist,” a black-and-white film about Hollywood’s transition from silent films to talkies in the late 1920s and the toll it takes on one actor’s life. In the romantic drama, a couple played by Jean Dujardin and Berenice Bejo find themselves on opposite sides of a career arc — his descending as her star beginning to shine.