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Movie Challenge Week 3: Silence is Golden

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Movie Challenge Week 3: Silence is Golden

Old 03-22-04, 06:24 PM
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Originally posted by littlefuzzy
I just hit my local library and checked out 3 Buster Keaton tapes, The General/Cops/The Playhouse, The Navigator/The Boat/The Love Nest, and Sherlock Jr./Our Hospitality. It looks like The General, The Navigator, and Our Hospitality are all over 60 minutes.
Watch The General first. Great film. My second favourite in the batch would be Sherlock Jr. (its under 60 minutes though?)

Hmm, I've seen all the Chaplin, Keaton and Harold Lloyd films. I think I will have to dig up a couple old Harry Langdon tapes I have but never watched.
Old 03-22-04, 08:31 PM
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Originally posted by wendersfan
The Gold Rush, probably.

Try your local library, they probably have a much better selection of silents than Blockbuster would.
That or Modern Times I would say . . .
Originally posted by wmansir
I watched Metropolis in week one, and it was the only silent movie I have. This could be tough. I'll probably have to hit netflix.
I got a late start on Week 1, so when I saw the theme suggestions, I held off on watching Metropolis because I knew this week would come.

If you need some help finding a title, check out the Top 100 Silent Era Films from www.silentera.com (a very cool site ).

Last edited by talemyn; 03-22-04 at 09:32 PM.
Old 03-22-04, 09:51 PM
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Modern Times is not a silent film.
Old 03-22-04, 10:23 PM
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Originally posted by Damfino
You may find some silent titles at Hollywood Video. Also your public library should have some silent movies available.

The Silent Era is a specialty of mine so I will monitor this thread all week and offer advice if anyone needs any.

This list of silent classics is a good place to start: http://www.silentera.com/info/top100.html

On Turner Classic Movies this week (Times are Pacific):

Wednesday:
City Lights(1931) 5:30 PM (Groucho says this one doesn't count. I would disagree, but I'm not making the rules)

The Circus(1928) 9:15 PM (I consider this to be an under-rated Chaplin classic and it's perfect for people new to silents and it's not as melodramatic as a lot of his movies are)

Sunday:
Intolerance(1916) 9:00 PM (This is a DW Griffith masterpiece and would be perfect for someone ambitious enough to watch a 3 hour epic silent movie).
might try "the circus" , Intolerance seems too hard, since its 3 hours and DW griffith was a racist.
Old 03-22-04, 10:49 PM
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I don't have anything in my unwatched pile for this weeks challenge so I added Metropolis to my netflix queue and moved it to the top. I've never watched a silent film before so this should be an interesting challenge.
Old 03-23-04, 12:01 AM
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I still haven't started the Criterion Carl Dreyer box set. Does someone have a recommendation on which I watch first?

Or I may watch a Harold Lloyd movie if I want something lighter.
Old 03-23-04, 12:37 AM
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Originally posted by Groucho
Modern Times is not a silent film.
Doh! . . . . . . my bad . . . it's been so long since I've seen it, I think that I just forgot.

But I do remember it being excellent . . .
Old 03-23-04, 01:17 AM
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Originally posted by talemyn

If you need some help finding a title, check out the Top 100 Silent Era Films from www.silentera.com (a very cool site ).
Thanks. I already added The General to my queue earlier today and since it is #1 on the 100 Silent Era Films list I'll stick with it. I also added Sherlock,jr /Our Hospitality double feature, but I'll see how I like The General before I bump it to the top.
Old 03-23-04, 07:54 AM
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hooray! a reason to find my Harold Lloyd films I had taped off of Turner Classic Movies last year and watch one.
Old 03-23-04, 12:09 PM
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Originally posted by Nick Danger
I still haven't started the Criterion Carl Dreyer box set. Does someone have a recommendation on which I watch first?
Just watch the three of them in order. They are all excellent, although Ordet seems to be most people's favorite. You might want to hold off on them, since none of the films in the set are silent.
Old 03-23-04, 01:36 PM
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They aren't silent?

I suppose I should have read the fine print on the back of the box. I've watched all my silent DVDs. Okay, videotaped TCM Harold Lloyd for me, too.
Old 03-23-04, 08:59 PM
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I went to my local video store and picked up Strike by Eisenstein. I'll watch sometime this week.
Old 03-23-04, 09:07 PM
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Originally posted by cultshock
Watch The General first. Great film. My second favourite in the batch would be Sherlock Jr. (its under 60 minutes though?)....
I like Sherlock Jr., too. You're right about the length though ... 44 mins.
Old 03-24-04, 11:00 AM
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Originally posted by Nick Danger
They aren't silent?

I suppose I should have read the fine print on the back of the box. I've watched all my silent DVDs. Okay, videotaped TCM Harold Lloyd for me, too.
Nope. I've still only seen Day of Wrath from the set but haven't gotten around to watching the others yet.
Old 03-24-04, 11:08 AM
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Originally posted by silentbob007
I like Sherlock Jr., too. You're right about the length though ... 44 mins.
But it's such a good movie that I'd allow it. I'd forgotten that it was so short.
Old 03-24-04, 11:18 AM
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I just have another suggestion for a future challenge:

Debut films, from any facet of the production, be it actor, director, editor, cinematographer, even producer.

A lot of options for obscure and mainstream stuff. Like, perhaps you can find Kubrick's debut feature film Fear and Desire. Or you can watch Citizen Kane.
Old 03-24-04, 05:59 PM
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I just watched Buster Keaton in The Navigator, The Boat, and The Love Nest, and I loved all three... I have been wanting The Art of Buster Keaton DVD set for a good while, I am going to have to get it one of these days.
Old 03-24-04, 11:46 PM
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Just watched The Adventures of Prince Achmed, the oldest surviving 'animated' feature film. Instead of drawn figures, the film makes use of silhouetted cut-outs in a story from the Arabian Nights. Fans of modern animation might be put off by the slower pace here, but I thought it was very beautiful; a nice change of pace. Having no artistic talent myself, it amazes me how much skill & effort it takes to make a film like this. The cut-outs are fairly elaborate and the film was made a frame at a time (300,000 I think the docu stated) over several years. The Milestone DVD has an hour long documentary on Lotte Reiniger and an optional English narration track.

Old 03-25-04, 07:13 PM
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I just finished Nosferatu. Pretty damn_good flick and I really enjoyed the music throughout the feature. I might have to put a few more slient movies in my netflix queue and see what other gems I may have overlooked.
Old 03-26-04, 05:42 PM
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Diary of a Lost Girl (1929 Germany, silent with orchestral score)

Director: G. W. Pabst (Pandora's Box, Love of Jeanne Ney)

Starring: Louise Brooks (Pandora's Box, The Show-off, It's the Old Army Game)

After a contract dispute with Paramount in 1928, Louise Brooks fled Hollywood and made two movies in Germany for Director G. W. Pabst. The first one was Pandora's Box and is now known as Brooks' best film.

A close second is Diary of a Lost Girl. Brooks plays Thymian Henning, a teenage girl who receives a diary as a gift for her confirmation. Almost immediately, her life is turned upside down after being date-raped and impregnated by her father's assistant. An un-wed mother was still a scandal in the 20s, so the child is put up for adoption and she is sent to a reform school for wayward girls. Predictably, the staff is abusive and Thymian soon escapes the school with a friend and they find refuge in a brothel.

What happens next is less predictable, as Thymian will marry well and regain her respectability while setting up an appropriately ironic ending. Overall Diary of a Lost Girl is a very good movie, but not quite as good as Pandora's Box.

Even for pre-code Hollywood, this movie was to steamy for American audiences, so about 9 minutes were cut for the American release. This footage survived in European prints and has been restored for the DVD release.

Pandora's Box is still mysteriously missing in R1, although an excellent R0 PAL DVD is available in the UK.

Last edited by Damfino; 03-26-04 at 05:45 PM.
Old 03-26-04, 09:50 PM
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I watched the second of my three borrowed Buster Keaton tapes: The General/The Playhouse/Cops. While the General was very good, Cops seemed forced to me. However, The Playhouse had me rolling with laughter. This was a very fun film, from the beginning where
Spoiler:
Buster probably had the most roles of any actor ever, to the part where he was replacing a runaway monkey in a vaudevillian act.
Unfortunately, The Playhouse isn't a feature, so it doesn't count for the challenge. I would suggest watching it anyway, though.

BTW, Damfino, could your name be from Buster Keaton's The Boat??

Last edited by littlefuzzy; 03-26-04 at 09:52 PM.
Old 03-27-04, 12:03 AM
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Originally posted by littlefuzzy
BTW, Damfino, could your name be from Buster Keaton's The Boat??
It could and it is! You are the first DVDTalker ever to make that association. Several others know the name is associated with Keaton but you're the first one to identify the film. Keaton also sinks a canoe by the same name in the movie College.

The Damfinos are also the Buster Keaton fan club.
More info: http://www.busterkeaton.com/Damfinos.htm

Last edited by Damfino; 03-27-04 at 01:33 AM.
Old 03-27-04, 01:10 PM
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Originally posted by Damfino
It could and it is! You are the first DVDTalker ever to make that association. Several others know the name is associated with Keaton but you're the first one to identify the film. Keaton also sinks a canoe by the same name in the movie College.

The Damfinos are also the Buster Keaton fan club.
More info: http://www.busterkeaton.com/Damfinos.htm
Well, I cheated a bit... I watched the film (for the first time) on the 24th as part of this challenge.

I am going to have to join that fan club!

I have been wanting the Art of Buster Keaton box set for a long time, it has just been a low priority because I don't often have that much spare cash.
Old 03-27-04, 08:47 PM
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I just watched Der Heilige Berg (The Holy Mountain) for a class where we're studying the works of Leni Riefenstahl (who is one of the leads in this film). It was interestingly shot, but I'm ambivalent about it, because you can see the same idolization of the body that appears in later fascist art.
Old 03-28-04, 11:52 AM
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Well, IIRC I only own 4 silents on dvd (Nosferatu 1922, Phantom of the Opera 1925, Metropolis 1927, Sunrise 1927), but only the last one is with me right now. I guess Sunrise it is .

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