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The Most Shocking Silent Film?


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What is the most shocking silent film?


Un Chien Andalou still has the power to make audiences cringe. The film has some truly horrific imagery.


H?xan has some disturbing scenes, including the sacrifice of live human babies. The baby sacrifice scene is still shocking.


In 2003, The Good Old Naughty Days was released. The Good Old Naughty Days is a collection of silent porn films. These films are incredibly shocking, even by today's standards. In fact, these films are probably illegal in some states.


L'?ge d'or is a very scandalous film from the director of Un Chien Andalou. When L'?ge d'or was first released, there was a storm of protest. The film premiered at Studio 28 in Paris on 29 November 1930 after receiving its permit from the Board of Censors. In order to get the permit, Bu?uel had to present the film to the Board as the dream of a madman. On 3 December 1930, a group of incensed members of the fascist League of Patriots threw ink at the screen, assaulted members of the audience, and destroyed art works by Dal?, Joan Mir?, Man Ray, Yves Tanguy and others on display in the lobby. On 10 December, the Prefect of Police of Paris, Jean Chiappe, arranged to have the film banned after the Board of Censors reviewed the film. The film did not have its official United States premiere until 1-15 November 1979 at the Roxie Cinema in San Francisco.


Again, what is the most shocking silent film?

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The Unknown (1927) a silent horror film directed by Tod Browning and featuring Lon Chaney as carnival knife thrower Alonzo the Armless and Joan Crawford as the scantily clad carnival girl he hopes to marry.

"The Unknown" is by far the most intense and demented of director Tod Browning's films (which include "Dracula" and "Freaks".

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According to Wikipedia, "Several scenes from the early part of the film are still missing, but these do not seriously affect the story continuity.".


However, Wikipedia is not always 100% accurate.


A few more silent films that shocked audiences:


Hell's Hinges (1916) - This pre-code film was notable for its brutal realism. The good guys did not always win.


Inspiration (1915) - Pre-code film about a sculptor who searches for the perfect model. It is generally cited as the first non-pornographic American film to feature nudity. (This was Audrey Munson's first movie. She had a promising career as a model and budding film actress when she was in her early twenties, but her career was destroyed by a murder scandal that she was involuntarily a part of and shared no guilt in. Abandoned and forgotten by her family, she spent the last 60 of her 105 years in a mental institution.)


Within Our Gates (1920) - This film was controversial for its depiction of interracial rape, lynching, and racial discrimination. However, the film DOES NOT condone these activities.


Birth Control (1917) - A film produced by and starring Margaret Sanger and describing her family planning work. It was the first film banned under a 1915 ruling of the United States Supreme Court that films "did not constitute free speech". The banning of "Birth Control" was upheld by the New York Court of Appeals on the grounds that a film on family planning may be censored "in the interest of morality, decency, and public safety and welfare".


The Birth of a Nation (1915) - Does this even need an explanation?


The James Boys in Missouri (1908) and Night Riders (1908) - These films were banned in Chicago, due to what then Chief Justice James H. Cartwright called "the evil influence of obscene and immoral representations". These were probably the first films to ever be banned.

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H?xan is pretty tame, compared to many other silent films.


The most shocking and scandalous silent films are:


Coiffeuse, La (1905)

A L'Ecu d'Or ou la bonne auberge (1908)

El Satario (Unknown Release Date)

Am Abend (circa 1910)

Devoirs de vacances (1920)

Mousquetaire au restaurant (1920)

Atelier faiminette, L' (1921)

Voyeuse, La (1924)

Abb? Bitt au couvent, L' (1925)

Ag?nor fait un levage (1925)

Fess?e ? l'?cole, La (1925)

Heure du th?, L' (1925)

Miss Butterfly (1925)

Eveready Harton in Buried Treasure (1929)

Massages (1930)


However, these underground films were never meant to be seen by the general public.


The most shocking MAINSTREAM silent film is probably Un Chien Andalou. However, this is debatable.


Debate! ^ _ ^

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I have seen Un Chien and it has the eyeball slicing scene , that scene alone makes it the most shocking, arguably, there is no movie with that image that I am aware except for Zombie(wood through a girls eyeball in a close up) by Lucio Fulci and thats not silent by any means :)

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What about "Das Cabinet des Dr. Caligari from 1920?? Love this film! The film is moody and shocking, & this chiller is the height of German Expressionist cinema and the.

This film is now neglected by the public as it is a silent film.


Made in 1919, "The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari" was literally years ahead of its time and remains a triumphant accomplishment in the genre of German Expressionism. Remembered mainly for its stunning sets, which featured crooked buildings and twisted landscapes, "Cabinet" also boasts one of the first attempts at a twist ending, something quite new and shocking for its time.

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