Silent movie star GIFs celebrate the lost art of the handwritten letter

I wouldn’t trade email and other instant communication for anything but there is something wonderful about a handwritten letter, especially one written on lovely stationary. Of course, letters were still alive and well during the silent era so let’s enjoy a few letter scenes with the stars of the era.

perils-of-pauline-letterAction superstar Pearl White receives some welcome news in her iconic serial, The Perils of Pauline. You can read my review here.

mystery-of-the-rocks-of-kador-letterLove letters! Don’t they make you want to squee? That’s exactly what happens in The Mystery of the Rocks of Kador, a perfectly smashing little melodrama from France. Read my review here.

corporal-kate-letterJulia Faye receives a bit of good news in Corporal Kate. She and her BFF are going “over there” as entertainers for the troops. A rare wartime buddy comedy with female leads. Read my review here.

wildcat-readingSome letters are more obscure, especially if you happen to be a ruthless bandit who never went to school. Pola Negri struggles in The Wildcat. Read my review here.

gypsy-blood-read-over-shoulderNegri’s character had no problems with literacy in Gypsy Blood but Harry Liedtke ain’t sharing. Read my review here.

cyrano-de-begerac-letter-and-lanternRoxane and Christian share a letter and a moment in the gorgeous 1925 version of Cyrano de Bergerac, noted for its stunning stencil color. Read my review here.

indian-tomb-your-letterFinally, some letters just aren’t worth keeping, as Bernhard Goetzke demonstrates in The Indian Tomb. Read my review here. (I also cover the 1959 remake directed by Fritz Lang and noted for Debra Paget’s paste-on dancing garb.)

11 Replies to “Silent movie star GIFs celebrate the lost art of the handwritten letter”

  1. Ahh yes…the hand written letter which i still like to do and now the kids are not even taught cursive any longer. Boy does pola Negri look great in that one scene

  2. Oh, the fine days when we still wrote letters! I was a prolific letter-writer in my teen days, and it’s kind of sweet how my buddies and me would say we would never stop writing letters, no matte what emails could offer.
    I rarely write even email these days…

  3. Julia Faye never fails to capture the excitement of the moment, no matter what role she’s playing. A very versatile, fun actress to me.
    Pola Negri in The Wildcat is priceless – I’ll have to check out your review for that one…looks interesting!
    On another note, if you will forgive my ignorance, I would at long last like a correct pronunciation of Miss Negri’s name…I have guessed, looked it up online, and so forth, but I’d like to be certain…

  4. Fun post! I started writing letters again last year when I decided to write fan mail. If I wouldn’t have done so, I wouldn’t have this kind note from Vera Miles and those two autographed pictures from Earl Holliman. Love the gifs you chose!

  5. I love seeing handwritten letters and notes in old films. It’s pretty sad to think about how many younger people these days, including people not much younger than I am, can’t read those letters, since they were never taught cursive.

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