Jump to content
 
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

Silent Favorites


Guest TCMhost-Claire

Recommended Posts

Silent Favorites? I'm such a devoted fan of the Silents that I wouldn't know how to start, as far as picking just one. If I had to pick, I would probably say that Louise Brooks in PANDORA'S BOX might take the title. What a twisted little tale that was and thankfully it was produced in Germany, because Hollywood would probably have never let this film be released. Louise Brook's character, LULU, literally defined the cinematic femme fatale (Pola Negri fans might disagree). What a great film, though.

 

Beyond that, I love many of the great Silent directors from Germany. Fritz Lang's DR. MABUSE-THE GAMBLER and METROPOLIS, F.W. Murnau's NOSFERATU, FAUST, THE LAST LAUGH and SUNRISE, Paul Leni's WAXWORKS and THE MAN WHO LAUGHS, Walter Ruttmann's BERLIN: SYMPHONY OF A BIG CITY, as well as Robert Wiene's CABINET OF DR. CALIGARI, are all fantastic films.

 

In addition, the wealth of Hollywood Silents (and let's not forget some other tremendous International Silents-has anyone here seen the French serial, LES VAMPIRES?) are too many to mention. THE GENERAL, STEAMBOAT BILL JR., THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, THE CROWD, THE THIEF OF BAGDAD, THE BIG PARADE, BEN-HUR, FLESH AND THE DEVIL, THE KID, SAFETY LAST, THE SON OF THE SHEIK, etc., have all added wealth to my knowledge and love for this genre. ANYTHING Lon Chaney was in could go on my list of favorites! I do see folks on this board that don't care for Silent films. It all boils down to personal taste, but they are missing out on some really great films........

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 month later...
  • 9 months later...
  • 3 weeks later...

Up until a couple of years ago, I had never seen a silent film in my entire life. Then, a co-worker introduced me to them. I've seen Metropolis, Spies, Nosfuratu, Broken Blossoms, Orphans of the Storm, Birth of a Nation, King of Kings, Sunrise, Phantom of the Opera, The Unknown, Ace of Hearts... I have City Lights and The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari in my Netflix queue.

 

Does anyone have any other recommendations?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey there, Grayson429!

 

You will find more than a few fans of SIlent film on the TCM board, myself included. Recommendations from me would include:

 

THE GENERAL, STEAMBOAT BILL JR., or almost any of Buster Keatons Silent Comedies. Speaking of Silent Comedies, look for almost anything by Harold Lloyd, as well.

 

DIARY OF A LOST GIRL, which stars the enigmatic Louise Brooks. She literally defines the 'Femme Fatale' in the silent Era. A truly incredible film, but even better is PANDORA'S BOX, also starring Louise Brooks. It's one of my very favorite silent films, but for now, is only available on video. Why this film has not made it to disc yet is baffling.

 

Also, catch at least one of these Silent Epics: BEN-HUR, THE BIG PARADE, GREED, NAPOLEON, INTOLERENCE. These films were extremely influential to future directors.

 

You also need to at least see one of Rudolph Valentino's films. I'd recommend SON OF THE SHEIK, but THE EAGLE and BLOOD AND SAND are also great. Magical stuff. Another major star in the silent era was Clara Bow, the "it" girl. Her most popular(and possibly BEST) film is simply titled, IT.

 

I see that you have watched Fritz Lang's serial, SPIES. If you liked it (I thought it was incredible!), you might want to check out two more thrilling silent serials from Fritz Lang: WOMAN IN THE MOON and DR. MABUSE-THE GAMBLER. TCM needs to throw these on their schedule.

 

Speaking of silent serials, There are two excellent examples from French Director, Louis Fueillade. LES VAMPIRES and JUDEX, which TCM broadcast last year. Both concern the criminal underground of Paris and are wildly entertaining.

 

......and there are so many other great Silent films that would take up too much space for me to mention. Sorry for overloading you, but I'm a major silent fan, and find it pretty cool that there are film fans who are still enjoying these early films. Many people don't have the patience for silent films, but if you give them a chance, Silent films still have many gifts to bestow upon those who discover them. Happy viewing!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Glad to see that people are still discovering silent films. I cant think of any more to add. Keith did a great list, I'll just second his choices. My personal favorite is Harold Lloyd. And "Greed" is great but I had to watch it alone - couldn't get anyone else interested in a 4 hour film.

Sometimes TCM shows silent 'shorts' if you're lucky enough to catch them.

Link to post
Share on other sites

My absolute favorite silent is " My Best Girl" with Mary Pickford and Buddy Rogers. They ar ejust adorable together and I love the story. I'm a big romance movie fan so this is right up my alley. I know it can be a little sappy but that just endears it to me all the more.If you have never seen it, it is out on DVD and readily available.Check it out!

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 months later...

I love actresses that played typical vamp roles such as Theda Bara and Greta Garbo. A Fool There Was and Flesh and the Devil were the first silent films I ever saw and are still my favorite.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 4 months later...

The Wind with Lillian Gish was the first silent to make a big impression on me. Since then Greed directed by Max Von Stroheim has become my favorite. I prefer the dramatic to comedic movies and I think they have a sophistication that many modern movies lack.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

My favorite silent film would be F.W. Murnau's "Sunrise" (1927), although I also like his 1929 film "City Girl" as well. As for early silents, I would say C.B. DEMille's "The Whispering Chorus" (1918) , a well made psychological drama that holds up quite well today. I would also include Lois Weber's 1916 drama "Where Are My Children?" to the list .

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think Sunrise is one of the most beautiful films EVER..... One of my new faves is the 1927 film The Love on Sunya, starring Gloria Swanson and John Boles. A remake of the 1919 film The Eyes of Youth, starring Clara Kimball Young. Swanson's first film as a producer, Sunya is a complex story about an ancient curse that must be righted. Modern-day story has Swanson unsure which path to take: loveless marriage that would save her family; marriage for love; or pursue a singing career. A strange man allows her to gaze into a crystal ball and see what each path will bring her. Just a good solid story with great technical effects and acting. Swanson is wonderful, playing 5 different parts. What a great actress!

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Let's see my favorites: Sunrise: F.W. Murnau's masterpiece should have won the first Best Picture oscar (in a way it did, but it won the artistic award and so Wings has gone down in history as the Best Picture winner. Not the Wings is a bad movie, but Sunrise is better.)

 

Sherlock Jr.: My favorite of all Buster Keaton's movies, like it even better than his masterpiece, The General.

 

The Wind: Lillian Gish's last silent film (if memory serves) and one of her best, even though it failed at the box-office in it's initial release.

 

My Best Girl: My favorite Mary Pickford movie, she's just so funny and so spunky.

 

Show People: Marion Davies is a big favorite of mine, and this (along with The Patsy) is the only silent movie of hers I've been able to see, but it's hilarious. Especially the "different emotions" scene.

Link to post
Share on other sites

As Keaton films go, I really like "Seven Chances"(1925) and "Three Ages" (1923) "Sherlock Jr" is a hoot with the right musical accompniment. The Vince Giordano score that was used when it was shown 10 years ago on AMC was great. The one on the DVD set, not so much...

Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh Melly you got to see Davies in Beauty's Worth (1922), When Knighthood Was in Flower (1922), and Little Old New York (1923)..... all are available.....

 

I'm still nagging TCM to show Davies films like Quality Street, Cardboard Lover, and The Red Mill.... all in the vaults.....

 

LOVE MARION DAVIES

Link to post
Share on other sites

drednm, I know, but unfortunately that runs into money, and right now I am extremely poor. I've been nagging our local library to get them, but no go so far. All they have is Show People, which I've already seen and taped off TCM about a year and half ago.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I know what you mean..... I've waited 40 years to see some of these films because no TV station shows them.... I was astonished to discover so many still exist by are never released on video or DVD (no market).... I've collected a few over the last couple years... It's almost criminal that copies exist and no one has a chance to see these films.....

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Nosferatu, the ending was sad, My best Girl, the ending is how every movie, (romantic-comedy) , should end, or I think should. The Flesh and The Devil, sad, sad story, is similar to the Man In The Moon by Robert Mulligan in a way..

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Has anyone seen the silent "Cat and the Canary", or "Cabinet of Dr. Caligary"? "Phantom of the Opera" is good. Any of Lon Chaney Sr.'s movies are worth looking at. I forget the one with a young Joan Crawford, and they are in the circus. It is cool, just to watch him in action.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, I've seen all three.

 

My version of CAT & THE CANARY has a horrible organ score, so when I watch it, I turn off the sound. The movie is pretty good. I like those "spooky old house" type of movies.

 

CABINET OF DR. CALAGARI is pretty weird, but watchable.

 

All of the Lon Sr. movies are worth catching. I think the title of the circus movie with Joan Crawford is THE UNKNOWN. I saw that one too, and it was great. Not too long ago, I think TCM showed both versions of his UNHOLY THREE. Both were good, but the silent was better, in my opinion.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 4 weeks later...

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
© 2021 Turner Classic Movies Inc. A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Cookie Settings
×
×
  • Create New...