Welcome, silent film newbies! This place is for you. I have created a curated list of silent films designed to give newcomers as broad an experience as possible. I will be recommending two feature films and a short or two every week. Follow my list and this time next year, you will have seen over a hundred silent films in every genre imaginable! Not bad for a newcomer, eh?
My Silent Movies 101 series serves as an introduction to the art overall but my First Year series will focus on expanding your knowledge through practical application. In other words, let’s get watching!
Here’s the format: I will recommend a weekend’s worth of silent movies. Each week will focus on a different topic but the overall goal is to share films you may or may not have ever heard of, along with a few famous classics. You will be sampling a buffet of films and, I hope, build your own taste in the process.
I promise you this: my list and recommendations will be quirky, broad in variety and unlike anything you have seen in sound pictures. Let the high schools and clickbait websites keep the unimaginative listicles, we’re diving into the deep end and we’re going to have a wonderful time! (Playing Cuanto Le Gusta would be suitable at this point.)
Week One: This is where they wow you
This week is all about creating an impact, watching silent films that defy the stereotypes.
Week Two: This is where you are dazzled with glamour
Meet the power couples of silent film and see them act! You’ll soon learn why they were so beloved in their day.
Week Three: This is where they twirl their mustaches
While it’s a mistake to think that silent movies were ALL melodrama, some silents did melodrama extremely well.
Week Four: This is where they are accidentally hilarious
We’ve covered some quality stuff thus far. Let’s go in the opposite direction and learn about some of the bombs of the silent era.
Week Five: This is where they get weird
Silent movies are wonderful, that we know, but did you also know they could be wonderfully strange? Let’s get our weird on!
Week Six: This is where they go YEE-HAW!
Silent westerns… Hey, where are you going? We’re going to prove that old west silent films are worthy of discussion.
Week Seven: This is where they slime you with sleaze
They’re tacky, they’re sleazy, they’re essential viewing! We’re going to the seedy side of the silent era and it’s going to be fun.
Week Eight: This is where the chicks take over. Nya, nya, nya.
Heroism isn’t just for the boys and we are going to watch films where women take charge and save the day.
Week Nine: This is where we learn to laugh without canes, pork pie hats or glasses
Silent comedy isn’t just pie fights and seltzer and we’ll be watching movies that showcase a different brand of funny.