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Added by johanlefourbe on 5 Feb 2020 12:03
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1001 Movies ... my own version (1920's)

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Notes: I have to admit that I was rather clueless about Harold Lloyd’s movies for so long and it has been pretty neat to finally discover his work recently. I have seen already a couple of his classic full-length features (‘The Kid Brother’ and ‘Safety Last!) and I thought I might as well watch one of his shorts as well. Well, it was fun, no doubt about it. However, even though it is inherent to the genre, it was just way too random for me. I mean, even though the story was supposed to be about a Boy in love with a Girl, in fact, he was above all busy with his car. There was also a really weird scene during which you get to see a junkie shooting up some drugs in the middle of the street and then the main character decided to steal his ‘drugs’ to shoot it up in his car (!). So, narratively, it wasn’t really strong but Harold Lloyd was such an entertaining and charismatic actor, it was just so much fun to see him doing all kind of crazy stunts and slapstick.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 170 Average listal rating (117 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 8.1


Notes: The tricky thing is that I might have seen too many movies starring Buster Keaton because, even though this one seems to have a really solid reputation, it didn’t really blow me away (I actually enjoyed much more ‘The Garage’ which was also starring Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle). Still, it was quite a milestone in his career since it was his first movie without Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle who pretty much launched his career. Concerning the movie itself, I have to admit that it was less random than his other shorts. Indeed, they gave us basically a freshly married couple during their first week after their wedding and I have to admit that the end-result was actually quite entertaining. The main attraction was some big house the newlyweds built himself within just a few days which was obviously a really misguided idea. On the other hand, this building was a perfect opportunity for some wild slapstick.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 29 Average listal rating (22 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 6.8
The Garage (1920)


Notes: After watching Charles Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, it was really time to finally watch something with Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle. Back then, Arbuckle was actually the biggest star of them all but he was hit by a scandal at the beginning of the 20’s which crippled his career until his untimely death in the 30’s. Anyway, after 5 mins, I understood why the guy was so popular at the time. Sure, the damned thing was really random, there was no plot whatsoever and, instead, it was pretty much a succession of sketches. However, the end-result was seriously hilarious, in fact, it has been a while since I saw such a funny vintage short silent comedy. Of course, it did help that Roscoe Arbuckle was assisted by Buster Keaton (in fact, Arbuckle was the one who discovered Keaton and pretty much launched his career) and the two masters were quite marvelous together. Hopefully, in the future, I will watch more movies with and directed by Arbuckle (indeed, he also directed most of his movies, something really new at the time).
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 99 Average listal rating (53 ratings) 6.3 IMDB Rating 6.4


Notes: To be honest, I don’t think it is really a great movie. Indeed, there was nothing visually really impressive about it, none of the characters involved were really interesting (except for Efrem and Old Ned) and the story was pretty much a random mess. And yet, the historical value of this movie is huge since it is considered as the earliest known surviving film directed by an African-American. As a result, it was quite intriguing to see such an old movie finally from a black perspective, focusing on black characters and directed by a black man, On top of that, the 3rd act turned out to be actually quite mind-blowing. Indeed, instead of developing the story going on so far, they took a left-turn and ended up with a rather long flashback scene showing what happened back then when the main character was younger and the end-result was just so shocking. Indeed, you had a double lynching coupled with a grizzly rape scene and some little boy who got shot at but still managed to escape. Anyway, it was just so nightmarish but, in the contrary to most of your typical horror pictures, it was something that was really taking place back then in the South making the whole thing so much more horrible and frightening. Another unforgettable scene that occurred just before was when Efrem, a wretched weasel, also got lynched, not because he was accused of any wrongdoings but simply because this mob was apparently getting ‘impatient’.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 1246 Average listal rating (721 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 8.1


Notes: If I recall it correctly, I saw this movie when I was living in England. There, I took a movie course which was just great. Every week we would watch a movie starting with 'Cabiria' released in 1914 (even though it is considered a classic, it was an awful 3 hours long silent epic, I think only 3 of us stayed until the end). So, we started from the very beginning of motion picture history and moved slowly towards more recent work. Anyway, I think this flick was the 2nd one we watched during this course. Honestly, except for the funny masterpieces by/with Charles Chaplin, I always found it difficult to get really interested in silent movies. But don't misinterpret my words though! I do enjoy other silent movies but they never really blow me away and this movie is a good example. Basically, it is one of the famous movies representing the German expressionism and it was indeed quite gorgeous to look at. However, even though the story was intriguing, I got restless due to the lack of dialogs and I had a hard time investing myself in the story and the characters. Anyway, it is still a beautiful and fascinating movie though.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 85 Average listal rating (60 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.6
Neighbors (1920)


Notes: Before watching this short, I have to admit that I was actually slightly worried that I had seen actually too many shorts by Keaton at this point to really care anymore. However, I was actually pleasantly surprised by this movie after all, in fact, I would go even further than that. Indeed, I'm pretty sure it actually turned out to be the best short feature I have seen starring Buster Keaton that I have seen so far. Sure, the story was maybe nothing really groundbreaking but the damned thing was just so entertaining. Indeed, most of the jokes were actually quite hilarious which I should have been expecting from this master. I was also so impressed by the acrobatic stunts the guy pulled in this movie. Indeed, the cool things with his movies is that, while watching them, you actually know there was no CGI available and barely any special effects either so everything happening was actually physically done by the actors. For example, there was this scene during which 3 actors (including Buster Keaton himself of course) were on top of each other, these guys were basically running back and forth between two buildings, the whole thing looked so insane and I was basically gobsmacked.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 1 Average listal rating (1 ratings) 6 IMDB Rating 6.6


Notes: It must one of the most obscure movies I have seen so far (only around 100 people have seen it on IMDb) and, to be honest, I thought it was rather difficult to judge the damned thing. Indeed, for starters, the version I saw on YouTube was pretty bad, especially during the night scenes which were barely watchable. On top of that, the only version available, as far as I know, is missing at least 20 mins, probably even more. However, even if it would have been complete, I’m not sure if the whole thing would then completely make sense though. I mean, you had the main character whose mother was (apparently?) a prostitute but she wasn’t actually his mother and, at some point, he got married but his wife never met or even knew who is mother was all this time? Basically, it turned out to be a rather cheesy old fashioned melodrama and you have to really dig the genre. At least, there was a very spectacular train crash occurring half way through which was something terribly ambitious for a movie made more than 100 years ago. The funny thing is that, even though this scene was definitely really cool, in my opinion, it didn’t really have much added value narratively speaking and I think it could have been removed without impacting the story at all.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 108 Average listal rating (71 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 7.7


Notes: I think it is the oldest movie I have seen starring Buster Keaton and, at first, I was wondering why it was called ‘The Goat’ but I think it was probably some kind of abbreviation of ‘scapegoat’. Anyway, this short apparently does have a solid reputation but, even though I have to admit that it was pretty good, I don’t think it was one of his best shorts though. I don’t know, it felt really random but I have to admit that it is inherent to the genre. The concept was also rather preposterous, the fact that nobody checked who was actually on this picture before printing it out all over the place. Still, Keaton was just a great comedian and, obviously, one of the greatest stuntmen that ever lived so, in spite of its flaws, the damned thing was still seriously entertaining.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 1006 Average listal rating (662 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 8.3
The Kid (1921)


Notes: Even though Charles Chaplin had been directing many movies as far back as 1914, I actually consider this movie his official directing debut since it was his first full length feature. Anyway, back then, when it was released it was obviously a tremendous critical and commercial success. Back in those days, Chaplin was already a big player thanks to the success of his marvelous short movies but with this new long format, he was clearly displaying his ambition to reach some new creative heights. In my opinion, he was still experimenting how far he could go with the Tramp so I don't think it was as good as his later work such as 'Modern Times' or 'The Great Dictator' but it doesn't change the fact that it was yet another enchanting movie with some hilarious bits but with some social consciousness as well. Jackie Coogan who played the title character was also pretty impressive and became in fact the first major child star in the movie business. Eventually, even though it might not be one of Chaplin's best movies, it is still a great classic.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 34 Average listal rating (25 ratings) 5.6 IMDB Rating 5.7
Rhythmus 21 (1923)


Notes: A couple of days ago, I saw ‘Rhythmus 23’ but I didn’t know it was actually a follow-up to this movie so I thought I might as well check it out as well. I have to admit that I had never heard of Hans Richter before but, apparently, he was a major German artist who was one of the first who dabbed into abstract film making. Even though this movie might not seem to be much (you have to keep in mind that it was made already more than 100 years ago), it is actually considered as one of the very first abstract film and had therefore a huge impact. With ‘Rhythmus 23’, the guy who uploaded the video on YouTube did also add his own music but, while it was a decent effort, to be honest, it wasn’t really a great combination. In this case, I watched it without sound as it was intended and, even though I usually don’t care much about movies which are completely silent, it actually worked fine here. Eventually, even though the whole thing looked rather rudimentary, it was still pretty neat and I wonder how it was done.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 151 Average listal rating (68 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.3


Notes: From the few movies I have seen directed by D.W. Griffith, it might be the best one so far. Indeed, I was quite impressed by this lavish production, especially for a movie made more than 100 years ago. However, I have to admit that I was at first slightly worried when they kept hammering the fact that the government following the French Revolution was ‘Bolshevik’. Fortunately, the damned thing still turned out to be fairly accurate, at least, according to what I learned back then in school growing up in France. Seriously, I was actually quite impressed by how the Aristocrats were described as decadent, seriously rotten and even quite repulsive. The contrast with the filthy leaving conditions of the commoners was so huge, it also felt quite accurate and the end-result was such a polarized society which was ready to explode at any moment. All this was actually seriously well done and quite fascinating but, to be honest, I’m not so sure if I really cared about the gloomy tale of these 2 orphan sisters. It was also rather intriguing that these 2 sisters who were not actual sisters were played by 2 women who were actually sisters in real life (Lillian Gish and Dorothy Gish). Anyway, it was basically another typical dark and gloomy drama, a genre really loved by Griffith. Still, even if it was all quite theatrical and melodramatic, it was so well put together and it was seriously entertainaing, even after 150 mins.
johanlefourbe's rating:


Notes: This movie is almost a 100 years old... How awesome is that! It is black and white, it is silent and yet it is totally spellbinding. I wonder how many so-called horror fans still have to watch this masterpiece? Basically, it is simply the first and ultimate vampire flick, no more no less. In my opinion and a view shared by the gross majority of the film community, it is still an amazing feature and all the vampire flicks made after that became its legacy. On top of that, not only is it a great horror classic but it is also a fine example of German expressionism. Furthermore, who was this guy Max Schreck anyway?!? He gave here one of the weirdest performances you'll ever see but it totally worked. He was so convincing that there was even this legend is that Schreck's otherworldly performance as Nosferatu was due to the fact that he was in reality a vampire. Willem Dafoe portrayed him as such, playing the vampire Count Orlok in 'Shadow of the Vampire', another movie that you should absolutely watch.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 347 Average listal rating (183 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 7.7


Notes: Well, I was seriously impressed by this movie, that's for sure. First of all, I have always been interested in documentaries so it was just really neat to see this movie which is usually considered as the very first movie in this genre. Indeed, Robert Flaherty, probably not consciously, set many of the ground rules of the genre and most of the documentaries made nowadays still use these rules. Obviously, many criticised this movie because many (maybe all) of the scenes were actually staged but this criticism is rather ridiculous in my opinion. Indeed, can you imagine shooting with such 100 years old cameras in such terrible conditions without setting up first the scenes? Even nowadays, they still make up some stuff. Anyway, the bottom line is, was it faithful or not? You bet it was. Indeed, with this movie, you get a fascinating look on the life of Eskimos and even though this movie is nowadays almost 100 years old, it never felt condescending. Anyway, this movie was a huge milestone in motion picture history.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 154 Average listal rating (77 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7


Notes: Honestly, I think it's rather difficult to review this flick. Indeed, even though it was rather long (more than 130 minutes), especially for a silent feature, it was actually supposed to be 6 hours! After watching the whole thing, you wonder how Eric von Stroheim managed to get 6 hours from this story but, I guess, we’ll never know. So, how can you review a movie when you have seen only a fraction of it? Many of us (include myself) blame Peter Jackson for indulging himself with overlong movies but, with von Stroheim, it goes to a whole different level and he must have been one of the most decadent directors that ever lived. As a matter of fact, at the time, this movie was the most expensive ever made and it figures. Indeed, even though the action takes place in Monte Carlo, and it seems as if they went there to make the movie, they actually recreated the whole thing at Universal Studios with some impressive accuracy in the details. Personally, I enjoyed above all von Stroheim who, of course, played the lead and he gave one of the best silent performances I have seen. To be honest, even though I have a weak spot for con-artists, nothing much happened during the whole thing but it was still pretty good though.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 125 Average listal rating (95 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.6
Cops (1922)


Notes: This short apparently does have a solid reputation and it turned out be pretty good indeed. Sure, as usual, it was all rather random and chaotic but that’s inherent with the genre, I’m afraid. At least, the title made sense since Keaton’s character kept getting into trouble with various cops and was even chased by 100’s of them towards the end. Eventually, the only thing that didn't really work for me and prevented this short from becoming really awesome was the horse. Sure, it was fun for a while but they got stuck too long on this running joke. When he brought it to some ‘goat gland specialist’, a really obscure reference to a quack doctor from back then, the whole joke was also completely lost on me. A part from that, it worked so well though with some non-stop jokes and slapstick and most of the damned thing was actually quite hilarious.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 58 Average listal rating (31 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 8


Notes: To be honest, I was at first rather annoyed that the only available version available on YouTube was colorized. However, I have to admit that, as soon as they got to Antarctica, the damned thing looked amazing with these vast white landscapes against this bright blue sky. I also expected these explorers to go straight to the South Pole but it was interesting that they first settled for a while in Antarctica when they arrived. Seriously, I forgot how long they stayed there but they definitely spent many months out there before finally starting their final journey to the South Pole. This way, it allowed Herbert Ponting to shoot so many interesting scenes displaying some incredible landscapes and some of the fauna that you can find in this remote region. While watching the damned thing, I actually forgot that it was the very first time that anyone shot this kind of images in this particular place which makes this movie historically incredibly valuable. Anyway, at last, during the final act, they did really go up to the South Pole and the whole team who went there, well, they all died actually. Not only it was surprising because it was definitely a tragic outcome for an otherwise rather cheerful expedition but it was a shot in a way that you (at least, I did) believed that Ponting also came along but it wasn’t in the case so how did they come up with this footage? Eventually, it seems that a lot of it was staged, just like with ‘Nanook of the North, another documentary dealing with the Artic also released in the 20’s.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 288 Average listal rating (133 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 7.9


Notes: Eventually, I believe it’s the craziest and wildest movie I have seen so far directed by Fritz Lang. That’s really the cool thing about movies which were made back then. Sure, they didn’t have the technological tools and gadgets that we have today but, instead, they had much more freedom and the creativity displayed in this movie was just impressive. As a result, it did seem that Lang thought he could do whatever he wanted which did result with this massive running time and, of course, you might wonder if this movie really required around 270 mins. Sure, I have to admit that it was quite a marathon to watch and, yet, the damned thing worked actually pretty well. Indeed, the fact that you spend so much time with this story and these characters made it much more intense than if it would have been 90 mins. As a result, Lang had also the possibility to indulge in some visually weird scenes. It was also pretty neat that the main character was actually the bad guy and, as usual, the bad guy is always more interesting than the good guys. Indeed, in this case, Mabuse was called a gambler but he was actually so much more than that and the guy was actually quite fascinating. Rudolf Klein-Rogge should also be praised as he played in this movie so many different versions of the infamous Dr. Mabuse. It was so cool that, even though the audience could always spot him, it always made sense that the other characters wouldn’t recognize him which was so clever and so well done.
johanlefourbe's rating:


Notes: Eventually, it is quite a weird flick, some very old documentary (almost 100 years old now) dealing with some even older superstitions mainly involving witchcraft in the Middle-Ages. It is rather funny that it is considered a horror flick when it is supposed to be a documentary. I mean, there were some rather eerie stuff, I’ll give you that but it doesn’t really qualify as ‘horror’, at least, that’s my opinion. Honestly, the whole thing feels pretty dated nowadays and you might wonder if it was really scientifically accurate. Still, even though the educational aspect might be questionable, it was still an interesting watch and it has definitely some historically value. It is also striking that the makers were rather dismissive towards the Middle-Ages beliefs but the way they put ‘hysteria’ on some vastly varied mental diseases was quite priceless (of course, in the 20’s, psychology was a rather new science). Anyway, I’m not really sure if it is really a great flick but it is still a very intriguing movie.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 100 Average listal rating (67 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.4
The Pilgrim (1923)


Notes: With almost 50 mins of running time, I'm not sure if it should be really considered as a short. Anyway, probably because of the slightly longer running time, they had to come up with a plot which was refreshing. Sure, it was basically still a succession of sketches, sight-gags and other stunts but the end-result was less random and chaotic than usual. It was also interesting that Charles Chaplin played his tramp differently than usual here. Indeed, he was this time a convict, obviously a thief, who was drinking and smoking. Sure, he was still not a full-blown villain or a real thug but I think there was still a big difference with his classic naïve tramp with a heart of gold. So, it was some solid material and Chaplin was really strong as usual and, yet, somehow the damned thing didn't really grab me though. Maybe I watched too many of these short silent comedies recently. Anyway, even if it might not be one of his best movies, it was still pretty good.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 58 Average listal rating (41 ratings) 5.9 IMDB Rating 6.4


Notes: Even though I did hear before about Man Ray, I have to admit that I’m not really familiar with his work but he was apparently mostly famous for his modern photography even if he considered himself a painter. Concerning the movie itself, I’m getting rather acquainted with the genre and I think these short experimental movies could be divided into 2 categories. On one hand, you have some films constantly repeating endlessly the same pattern(s) and, on the other hand, you have some films which are completely random with a succession of seemingly unrelated surrealist bits. Well, this movie definitely belonged to the 2nd category, that’s for sure. Seriously, it was actually quite impressive how much random stuff Man Ray has managed to cram in just 2 mins. Eventually, I have always a rather hard time to get a good grip with such movies because it all seems so incoherent. Still, there is no denying that the end-result was quite intriguing, especially towards the end, with a really gorgeous topless lady who was apparently the famous Kiki de Montparnasse, Man Ray’s lover and muse for many years.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 352 Average listal rating (211 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 8.1


Notes: I was really surprised to discover that this movie was not included in some major movie lists such as ‘1001 Movies You Must Before You Die’ or ‘They Shoot Pictures, Don’t They?’ (Roger Ebert did include it in his ‘Great Movies’ list though). Indeed, it is rather weird since this movie does include arguably the most iconic scene displayed in a silent comedy which was obviously when Harold Lloyd was dangling from a clock on a top of a building. This scene was and still is the stuff of legends, even if it was debunked years later by a stuntman. Indeed, there were actually some security measures, for example, they used a fake building front filmed in a way to capture the street below. Even so, Lloyd was still probably risking his life anyway and that’s the kind of stuff you don’t see anytime nowadays (even though you could say that Tom Cruise does indulge in some really hazardous stunts with his ‘Mission: Impossible’ franchise). Instead, nowadays, everything is done with some really fake CGI but should performers actually risk their life to entertain us? The weird thing is that I was never scared when Lloyd was doing his stunt which is a tribute to his mighty skills. Eventually, this scene was obviously amazing and quite unforgettable but, even though it tends to overshadow the rest of the movie, the whole thing was actually quite fun. Sure, the concept was pretty basic but Lloyd definitely made the most of it and most of the jokes were actually quite hilarious to behold.
johanlefourbe's rating:


Notes: It was another tricky short movie to analyse. Indeed, at first, it seemed to be about a rather lonely and depressed woman pretty much stuck at home and dealing with a rather weirdo husband. In fact, she never really smiled and looked grumpy through the whole duration. It’s only afterwards that I discovered that this movie had been directed by a woman which made the whole thing even more intriguing. In fact, it is usually considered as one of the first feminist movies ever made. It mostly due to the fact that the main character was a fairly regular woman while her husband was rather grotesque which was a really unusual approach back in the 1920’s. Anyway, I was above all intrigued by its visual aspect. Indeed, that’s the cool thing with such old movies, back then, all filmmakers had to experiment because the actual rules of filmmaking didn’t exist yet. In this case, they came up with something so striking, mixing some hyper realism with some surreal imagery. The end-result was therefore at once very pure and simple and yet quite complex as well. Of course, you could argue that the plot was really simplistic but that’s not where lies the power of this movie. Indeed, above all, it had a strong visual aspect and I wonder if this movie could have been an inspiration for David Lynch, the master mindf*cker.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 258 Average listal rating (155 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 7.8


Notes: Well, it was definitely quite entertaining. First of all, even though it was shot almost 100 years ago (by the way, the version I saw on YouTube was of a pristine quality, it’s too bad there was some interruptions every 5 minutes for some damned commercials), the action was taking place almost a 100 years before so Keaton had obviously a lot of fun recreating this time period. Indeed, New York was pretty much unrecognizable and there was a long sequence involving the strangest little train I have ever seen. In fact, this train was actually accurate to the time period. There was also a hilarious vintage bicycle at the beginning. Concerning the story itself, it might sound like a drama but, in the hands of Keaton, it became quite a farce with many incredible stunts and even more visual gags. To be honest, at the end of the day, I have to admit that it was still slightly too random for my taste. Furthermore, you might wonder if the material was enough for a feature length movie as every joke was stretched for quite some time so a shorter version might have been more effective. Anyway, it was still definitely a solid silent comedy.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 17 Average listal rating (14 ratings) 6 IMDB Rating 0


Notes: I wasn’t really sure what to expect from this flick and, to be honest, I actually wonder how I actually ended up watching the damned thing. On top of that, I have to admit that I had never heard of Hans Richter before but, apparently, he was a major German artist who was one of the first who dabbed into abstract film making. Apparently, this movie was a follow-up to ‘Rhythmus 21’ which is considered as one of the very first abstract film and had therefore a huge impact. For some reason, I saw this one first but I will probably check ‘Rhythmus 21’ also at some point. Anyway, how was the movie itself? Well, even though it looked rather rudimentary (you have to keep in mind that it was made already 100 years ago though), it was still pretty neat and I wonder how it was done. The guy who uploaded the video on YouTube did also add his own music apparently but, while it was a decent effort, to be honest, it wasn’t really great though. Anyway, I thought it was a intriguing watch and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you are interested in more experimental movies.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 335 Average listal rating (136 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 8.1
Greed (1925)


Notes: Of course, I heard the legends, that it was supposed to be actually at least 4 hours long (there are even rumors of a whopping 8 hours version) so I was expecting to watch a mutilated masterpiece. Well, to be honest, I was really surprised that the movie worked so well in this shorter version and I have my doubts that this longer version would have been such a huge improvement. After all, it is this shorter version which has been hailed as one of the best movies ever made, not any other possible version. Anyway, how was the damned thing after all? I have to admit that, with this title and with the starting scenes, I thought it would be dealing with a greedy gold miner, a little bit like in ‘The Treasure of the Sierra Madre’. However, it was after all about an average guy who became a dentist, got married but it was his wife who really got greedy after winning big at the lottery. It was basically an interesting cautionary tale showing how becoming rich can eventually make you completely miserable. The interesting thing was that their situation became really dramatic after he lost his job as a dentist but I wonder why he didn't just simply close shop temporarily, go to a dentist school, get a degree and reopen his practice. Anyway, it was a rather dark tale and, in fact, none of the characters had really some redeeming features. My favorite one was probably McTeague himself, not exactly a hero and even a rather simple man and, yet, Gibson Gowland was still super charismatic playing this part.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 80 Average listal rating (53 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 6.7


Notes: To be honest, even though I had heard of Fernand Léger before, I have to admit that I didn’t know much about his work though. Anyway, he was mostly famous as an abstract painter, mostly cubism, but, at some point, he also delivered such experimental surrealist movies. I also watched recently ‘Anémic Cinéma’, another experimental short from the same time period made this time by Marcel Duchamp, and while I greatly admired Duchamp’s short, the only issue I had was that it was too repetitive. Well, with Léger’s short, it was actually exactly the opposite. Indeed, even though there was some repetition, most of it was just really random and chaotic and, combined with the rather hysterical score, the end-result felt like some feverish dream or nightmare, depending on your mood. As far as I was concerned, I thought the end-result was certainly original and intriguing but also stressful but I guess that’s the cool thing with such experimental features. Indeed, since there is no narrative to hang on to, the only thing left is to actually ‘feel’ the succession of images coming at you at a rather frenetic pace, even if this experience might be rather distressing.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 574 Average listal rating (369 ratings) 8.4 IMDB Rating 8.2
Sherlock, Jr. (1924)


Notes: To be honest, so far, after watching around 5 of his movies, I can’t say I have become a huge fan of Buster Keaton's work. However, since this movie had a rather stellar reputation, I was quite eager to check it out. Well, I wasn't disappointed, that's for sure. Indeed, the damned thing was a total blast and easily one of the best silent comedies I have seen so far. Indeed, as usual with Keaton, the whole thing was quite random but, in the contrary to his other movies, it worked fine here. Basically, most of the duration was just a dream but it didn't stop here as they also gave us a 'movie within a movie'. In fact, it was probably the first time this gimmick was ever used but it was visually quite clever and actually very well done. Anyway, from the moment Keaton went through this screen, pretty much everything became possible and it became one of the most freewheeling movie experiences I ever had. Indeed, it was so wild and I don't how many times I was gasping at the insane scenes that Keaton gave us combining some magic tricks, some marvellous daredevil stunts and even some awesome pool trick shots. There were a couple of times I even had no clue how they actually pulled this off. Anyway, the damned thing definitely deserves his awesome reputation and it is, in my opinion, Buster Keaton's magnum opus.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 321 Average listal rating (170 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 8


Notes: Even though it might seem to be a simple story (it is basically about a guy losing his job, not much more), I have to admit that I was really impressed by the sheer power of its visuals and of the performances, especially by Emil Jannings who played the main character. It’s only afterwards that I discovered that Jannings, arguably one of the best actors of all time, was actually a major Nazi supporter and I’m glad I didn’t know that before watching the damned thing. Anyway, it was still a powerful movie, so powerful, that they didn’t have to use a single title card for the dialogues. Seriously, it was quite impressive and there was not a single moment while what was going on was not crystal clear. Furthermore, it was such a sad movie, probably one of the saddest I have seen so far. The saddest part, at least for me, was when his neighborhood found out that he had actually lost his job and was pretending to still be a doorman. Indeed, for some reason, maybe I’m too optimistic but I was expecting them to be supportive but, eventually, they were all mocking him which was just so cruel but I guess it was actually true to human nature, I’m afraid. There was also this rather weird and ridiculous happy ending coming from nowhere. Apparently, the producers forced F.W. Murnau and Carl Mayer to end up with something else and more upbeat than the inevitable death of the poor doorman but since they really hated this idea, they went for something really far-fetched and cynical. At first, this ending really bothered me but, the more I think about it, the more I believe it was actually quite brilliant.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 163 Average listal rating (107 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 7.6


Notes: To be honest, the way this boat ended up drifting on the open sea was seriously convoluted but it was obviously not the point of this movie. Indeed, the whole point was to have these two completely clueless characters stuck on this huge ship only by themselves and as soon as they got the messy introduction out of the way, the whole thing became seriously entertaining. For example, at some point, the two characters kept running after each other, going up and down the same stairs, completely symmetrically, and I just loved the perfect rhythm displayed this scene. Of course, it was all pretty random but it didn’t bother me as it was very well done and just so much fun to behold. The poster also pretty much spoiled it but there was also a rather impressive underwater scene involving some diving suit which somehow reminded me of some old vintage Tintin comic-book I used to read as a kid. On the downside, to be honest, I thought that the scenes involving some obscure black tribe were rather racist and I wish there would have been some text explaining that they were more than just some cannibal savages. Of course, you could argue that it was inherent to the time period but I just didn’t care much for it. At least, the fact that the two main characters were extremely dim-witted made it easier to swallow.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 236 Average listal rating (117 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 7.7


Notes: To be honest, I usually have a hard time to watch silent features. Indeed, I think it's pretty tough to sit through a full length feature without any dialogs, especially when it is about 3 hours long. However, I had a good time to watch this one though because it was actually quite fun. Indeed, it is a great adventure, a real escapist feature, and I thought it was more entertaining than all those heavy dramas directed by D.W. Griffith for example. I especially enjoyed the first part when you have Douglas Fairbanks making some trouble in Bagdad’s market. To be honest, as soon as he fell in love with the princess, the whole thing lost some steam and I preferred when he was just a devilish thief. Also, the fact that ‘Aladdin’, one of my favorites Disney animated features, was basically a remake of this old classic, might have played a part in the fact that I didn’t completely enjoy this feature since I already knew most of the plot. Furthermore, the thief, as a character, is actually more fun than Aladdin but you miss the genius and, with a running time around 140 minutes, it was just too long for its own good. Still, it is definitely a fun and entertaining movie.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 983 Average listal rating (634 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 8.2


Notes: What can be said about this movie that hasn’t been said so many times before? Basically, it is pure and simply another impressive piece of cinema coming from Charles Chaplin and it is probably even better than 'The Circus' which I also loved. In fact, I have actually a nice story about this flick. Many years ago, I showed this movie to my step-children because I thought it was important for their education. Back then, Nick, my step-son, was only 8 years old but, suddenly, out of nowhere, 7 ears later, during one of our endless conversations about movies, Nick started to precisely described in details the famous scene when the Tramp eats his shoe. Seriously, it was quite something and it shows the huge impact of this movie (but it could be said about anything done by this guy). Myself, I started to watch this movie when I was just a kid and, already then, I thought it was just fascinating and completely hilarious.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 229 Average listal rating (130 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 7.6


Notes: I was surprised to find out that it was actually Sergei Eisenstein's directorial debut as the damned thing was quite complex and ambitious for a first-timer. Still, to be honest, I have to admit that I had actually a rather hard time to get into the damned thing though. The fact that such Soviet propaganda movies actually never focused on the characters individually and instead handled the working class as one single character probably didn’t help. On the other hand, I have to admit that it was just quite inspiring and exhilarating to see this crowd of working men rising up all together against their bosses but also the whole system in general. Even if you believe that Communism and Socialism were the worst possible thing in the world, there was a time when an alternative was actually possible. At least, for a short while, it was explored and this alternative did provide something else than our current endless chase after financial profits and personal gain. The final act during which the ruthless repression took place was also strong and, unfortunately, felt quite realistic. It’s interesting that, when you read other reviews, they mostly focus on the technical aspects of this movie which was, for the time, apparently quite groundbreaking, but, to be honest, I didn’t focus too much on that.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 63 Average listal rating (31 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 6.6
The Eagle (1925)


Notes: It was pretty neat to see for the first time a movie starring Rudolf Valentino who was basically the Tom Cruise of the Silent era. Concerning the movie itself, well, it was entertaining enough but, to be honest, I thought it was too random for my taste though. Indeed, it all started with a rather dashing action scene but then, it became some kind of romantic-comedy during which the main character was dodging the sexual advances of the Czarina. However, it didn’t last long ever, as the Czarina pretty much disappeared from the movie and the rest was about Valentino’s character trying to avenge his father. But even this revenge thing completely disappeared at the end when he ended up with the girl of his dreams. Eventually, the most interesting aspect about this story was the fact that the main character was plotting to kill a man while falling in love with his daughter. Unfortunately, the tone was much too light to really dig deeper into these conflicting feelings. Anyway, as you can see, it was all pretty messy but the whole thing did look good and Valentino was definitely quite charismatic. Indeed, he approached the lead character not as a super strong macho archetype (in spite of the impressive opening scene) but more as a subtle sensual being. As a result, he was often considered by the male audience back in those days as being too effeminate but the female audience, in the other hand, was completely fascinated by him.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 201 Average listal rating (133 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 7.9
Seven Chances (1925)


Notes: From all the Buster Keaton movies I have seen so far, even it actually has a solid reputation, it was the one which impressed me the least. I mean, it was still fun but there were a couple of things that did bother me. For example, there were a few black characters involved, more than you would usually get in a Keaton feature, which wasn’t a bad thing but the way they were represented was more than questionable. Furthermore, I’m pretty sure that there was even a white dude wearing some blackface make-up which was just so downright offensive, even if it was probably rather common back in those days. Concerning the rest of the movie, it was basically a classic comedic gimmick which has been used so many times afterwards but it wasn’t really great (In fact, even Keaton himself apparently didn’t care much for it either). Furthermore, I wonder if it wouldn’t have better worked as a short feature. Indeed, with only around 25 mins of the running time, I would have started almost right away with the newspaper ad (everything happening before was only mildly amusing). From that point on, the whole thing became some kind of endless chase involving Keaton and seemingly hundreds of women running after him and even if it was maybe not the most original thing in the world, it still worked fine though. Basically, not only it was visually really neat but the damned thing finally became seriously entertaining to behold.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 890 Average listal rating (550 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 7.9


Notes: To be honest, it has been a while since I have this flick and I should probably re-watch it at some point. By now, I have seen many very old classics and I have noticed that it is very often hit-and-miss with such timeless features. Indeed, with some of them, I could see right away why they have been heralded through all the years but, for some others, it seems more that they were groundbreaking when they were released but they seem to be rather dated nowadays. Well, in this case, with this movie, it thought it was pretty good and, from a technical point of view, Eisenstein was quite a genius who came up with some movie technics that were never used before but, still, was it really such a fascinating story? I’m not so sure. I mean, it is probably the best propaganda film ever made but, even so, the propaganda genre has its limitations and, as a result, this movie still didn’t really blow me away. Anyway, even if it didn’t become one of my all time favorite movies, it was still a really interesting watch and it is definitely worth a look.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 467 Average listal rating (252 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.5


Notes: First of all, is it really a horror feature? To be honest, I thought the damned thing was actually sometimes pretty funny above all because of the mannered acting of those silent movies. I mean, with a Charles Chaplin movie, it works like a charm but with a horror flick like this one, it makes you chuckle on a regular basis. Furthermore, even though at first I was quite happy with the awesome classic music, it was actually rather distracting because, since it wasn’t especially composed for this movie, it often didn’t fit at all the action. Still, the production value was quite impressive, especially for a movie made almost 100 years ago, and there was definitely something dark and ominous about the whole thing, especially the awesome bal masqué with the Phantom disguised as the Red Death. And, of course, you had Lon Chaney. Man, this guy was impressive, playing one hell of a psycho, and to think he designed himself his own make-up was even more astonishing (apparently, it is something he took care of in all his movies).
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 37 Average listal rating (18 ratings) 6.8 IMDB Rating 6.8
Nana (1926)


Notes: It’s only afterwards that I discovered that it was only Jean Renoir’s 2nd directorial effort. Back then, he was still making some silent movies and it was something quite ambitious for someone who just started to direct. Still, to be honest, I have to admit that I really struggled to care about the damned thing though and the main issue I had was that the damned thing was just so long. Seriously, there is no way that this story required almost 3 hrs of running time and I wonder if the book written by Emile Zola worked better. At least, there is no denying that Nana was indeed quite a character. Indeed, even though she was quite vulgar, not really gorgeous and had no real talent, yet, I could see why all these men would be attracted to her. Eventually, it was an interesting balancing act from Catherine Hessling who must have had a lot of fun with this character. Unfortunately, I’m not sure if I really cared about this character and the fact that the other characters were even less interesting probably didn’t help. That’s another thing that bothered me, the fact that the whole thing felt rather misogynistic. Indeed, if you would believe this movie, all this men were actually innocent as they were all under the spell of this evil devious woman. I wonder how this movie would have been received if it was released nowadays following the #Metoo movement.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 67 Average listal rating (44 ratings) 5.7 IMDB Rating 6.1
Anemic Cinema (2009)


Notes: To be honest, even though I heard of Marcel Duchamp, I have to admit that I didn’t know much about his work but the guy had actually an impressive career and he was even considered as one of the most important artists of the 20th century. Anyway, he was incredibly versatile and it is not surprising that, at some point, he would also make such experimental movies. Well, at first, I have to admit that I was just fascinated by these spiral designs. Indeed, it was so well made and actually quite hypnotizing. Then, he gave us another kind of spirals, this time, involving some French puns and, well, even though those were amusing, it wasn't much more than that, I'm afraid, and I wonder if none French speakers can actually enjoy this movie. Anyway, through 7 mins, you go back and forth between these 2 concepts and, to be honest, it became quickly rather repetitive and I wish he did try something else at some point. Still, there is no doubt that these turning spiral designs creating some kind of 3D effect were just mesmerizing to behold.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 758 Average listal rating (492 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 8.1
The General (1926)


Notes: Even though I'm a huge fan of Charles Chaplin, having seen all his full length directing efforts and many of his shorts, I must admit that I'm pretty much ignorant concerning Buster Keaton. As a matter of fact, before watching this flick, I had never seen any of his movies! I know, shame on me... As you can imagine, I had some huge expectations before watching the damned thing and, to be honest, I have to admit that I was actually a little bit disappointed. I mean, it was pretty good and I definitely enjoyed it but I can't say I was blown away like I was with Chaplin's movies. I don't know, it was definitely funny but I never really cared about the main character and what he was going through. Eventually, even though Buster Keaton always said that this was his favorite movie, it was a huge flop and Keaton slowly disappeared into obscurity. Still, there were some impressive stunts (no CGI back then) and there is no doubt that Keaton can be sometimes really hilarious...
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 143 Average listal rating (83 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 7.6


Notes: I always felt bad that discovered Buster Keaton so late. Well, it took me even longer to see my first movie starring Harold Lloyd but, at least, it was definitely worth the wait, that’s for sure. First of all, I saw a restored version on YouTube and I must say I was amazed by its pristine quality which you wouldn’t expect from a silent movie already almost 100 years old. Concerning the movie itself, it was apparently Harold Lloyd’s favorite among all his films so I got lucky to discover his work with, allegedly, one of his best movies. Sure, like most silent comedies, the whole thing was rather random but I thought the story was actually fairly well developed. Above all, the damned thing was just so entertaining. Seriously, I can’t remember the last time I saw such a hilarious silent movie. Basically, the whole thing is an endless succession of very clever gags and I was amazed that so many of them worked so well. In fact, there were so many, I don’t think I could pick up any of them as a favorite and, maybe, that’s a downside, but I think it was more a luxury problem.
johanlefourbe's rating:


Notes: I saw a version for which the background music was a piano solo by some guy called Craig Michael Davis and his music was just really neat. Seriously, it was so soothing, I don’t think I ever felt so relaxed while watching a silent picture. Concerning the movie itself, it was quite intriguing as it gave a good look on Berlin, almost 100 years ago at such a specific time period, not even 10 years after the WWI ended and slightly more than 10 years before the WWII would start. It also gave the feeling that you were experiencing a single day in the city even if it was obviously shot during a much longer time period. To be honest, even if it was technically very well made, I thought the editing was actually rather dazzling. Indeed, there were so many quick cuts lasting a split second but what was even more problematic, at least, for me, was that the longest scene did last maybe 30 seconds. It means that sometimes they would film something really neat or surprising or incomprehensible but, instead of spending maybe 5 mins to fully exploit the potential of this moment, after a few seconds, they would cut to something else. As a result, it made the whole thing rather exhausting to behold and there were a couple of times during which my mind just wandered off as I was losing focus facing this endless cascade of quick cuts and very tiny little bits of scenes. Anyway, from a historical point of view, it is still a really interesting movie.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 221 Average listal rating (121 ratings) 7.9 IMDB Rating 7.7
The Unknown (1927)


Notes: Since I’m a huge fan of ‘Freaks’, it was really neat to see another movie directed by Tod Browning. This movie had even more in common with Browning’s classic since it was mostly taking place within a circus and focusing on a (supposedly) armless man. There was also something quite fascinating regarding this movie and it could have been a real masterpiece but I’m afraid it was slightly ruined by a really annoying soundtrack. That’s the issue with such vintage movies which are now in the public domain, people can do whatever they want and then put them online. Anyway, it was quite a strange movie with a rather half-baked story but with some fascinating characters. The best one was obviously the character played by Lon Chaney. I’m well aware of Chaney’s legendary status but I have to admit that I’m not familiar with his work but, after watching him for 5 mins in this movie, I understood right away why he was, and still is, so highly regarded. I mean, it was such a complex character and, obviously, some scenes didn’t make much sense physically speaking and, yet, Chaney always nailed it. The other strong character was the one played by a very young Joan Crawford. I’m not sure if Crawford herself was great but there was something really intriguing about this woman who was completely frightened by the idea of being touched by a man. It’s too bad that this phobia seemed to be solved too easily so they could wrap everything up at the end. Anyway, the damned thing was actually quite spellbinding.
johanlefourbe's rating:


Notes: After the already brilliant ‘La chute de la maison Usher’, it turned out to be another mesmerizing movie from Jean Epstein. Basically, before the movies became an actual business involving budgets around 200 million dollars for each projects, there was a time when it was much more experimental and this movie was a perfect example. To be honest, I would be hard-pressed to explain what this movie was exactly about as it turned out to be even murkier than Epstein's weird Edgar Allan Poe adaptation. And, yet, the damned thing turned out to be quite powerful. This movie was also a good example of how a good soundtrack can be a great asset for a silent picture like this one. Indeed, only a few days before, I also watched ‘Hijosen no onna’ by Ozu and even though it was also a solid silent movie, the lack of soundtrack made it really difficult to me to get into the damned thing. Well, in this case, it was the complete opposite as the soundtrack was just as intriguing as the rest of the movie was and it would be a completely different experience without it. Of course, it wasn’t the only asset as it was also visually really strong as well. I don’t know, it would be rather hard to describe in words but it seems that for most of the shots they really put some thoughts into them. Anyway, the end-result was certainly artistic and really surrealistic.
johanlefourbe's rating:


Notes: Well, it’s the 3rd movie I watched directed by Sergei Eisenstein and it was probably the most difficult one I have seen so far. While watching this movie, I tried to remember what I did learn at school about the 1917 October Revolution but it was more than 20 years ago and this movie certainly didn’t give any background information. Eventually, the end-result was some kind of endless feverish dream dealing with the uprising that took place at the time in Russia. Seriously, the damned thing was quite relentless and I don’t think they took a minute to breath and provide the viewers with the opportunity to absorb what they just watched. By now, I got pretty much used to the fact such Soviet propaganda movies actually never focused on the characters individually but, still, it was interesting that Lenin was mentioned only a couple of times (Vasili Nikandrov was a stunning look-a-like though). For Trotsky, the situation was even worse as, even though he did show up a couple of times, his name was never mentioned and, in fact, Eisenstein had to remove most of the footage dealing with him which shows how things can change in only 10 years. Eventually, what impressed me the most with this movie was the frenetic editing. Eisenstein’s idea was to edit together some shots of various things which apparently had nothing to do with each other to create an intellectual comparisons between them which was quite intriguing.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 661 Average listal rating (381 ratings) 8.6 IMDB Rating 8.1


Notes: From all the movies I have seen so far directed by Murnau, to be honest, it was the one that did impress me the least. It’s interesting because all the reviews I read afterwards were gushing about how this movie was above all a technical marvel. In fact, I find it rather hard to judge such an old movie on this aspect alone. Indeed, we have been so accustomed to see such elaborate modern movies, I mean, visually speaking, and I tend to forget how difficult, even impossible, it was to come up with such striking visuals back then without the usual modern tricks and gadgets. Still, I have to admit that I was quite impressed by the superimposition of several images, it was just so clever and very well done, especially for the time period. So, sure, it really did deserve all the praises it had received, at least, on a technical level, but, eventually, I just really struggled with the story though. At least, the beginning was intriguing. Indeed, in spite of the title, it was actually pretty bleak with this unnamed man plotting to kill his wife as suggested by his mistress. However, this plot was resolved rather quickly and, then, during the 2nd act, you had this couple who suddenly were in love again doing some really random stuff in the city. Well, even if some of the scenes were a technical marvel, this couple was actually rather tedious to behold. On the other hand, I have to admit that the final act with this huge storm was quite spectacular but, all in all, to be honest, I just didn’t care much for this story. Anyway, even if it didn’t blow me away, it is another major classic van F.W. Murnau though.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 2013 Average listal rating (1065 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 8.3
Metropolis (1927)


Notes: In fact, I had actually already seen this movie but it was only once and it was ages ago with my sister. I remember it very well, I saw this movie during the 100th birthday anniversary of Cinema and I was able see it on the big screen (which was very cool) but, unfortunately, the copy they managed to get was in such a very bad shape that they had to stop the show every 10 minutes to fix it up (which was completely not cool...). As a result, it wasn't really a rewarding experience and a re-watch was pretty much a must. Eventually, after all these years, I finally saw the damned thing again and it was definitely worth it. Indeed, it was quite extraordinary how insane and visionary this movie was. To be honest, the pacing was not always amazing and the lack of dialogues made the whole thing still rather sluggish (the fact that there was no real complete version didn't help either I guess) but, still, it is definitely the first Science-Fiction masterpiece and, almost 100 years later, it still holds up very well.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 764 Average listal rating (441 ratings) 8.7 IMDB Rating 8.1


Notes: This movie was quite mind-blowing and it really deserves its reputation as one of the best silent movies. Indeed, if nowadays, movies are dominated by huge blockbusters with some wall-to-wall CGI, well this movie is the complete opposite. Indeed, this movie is rather minimalistic and focuses on the trial of Jeanne D’Arc, so it is mostly indoors dominated by the dialogs between Jeanne and the juges and you barely get a glimpse of the (allegedly) really expensive decors ordered by Carl Theodor Dreyer. From the moment that Maria Falconetti shows up on the screen, I knew she was something else. Nowadays, her performance is still considered as one of the best ever given on the silver screen and it was indeed really impressive. You can imagine that Dreyer must have messed her up pretty bad to get this numb expression, her face is one you will never forget. This movie has also many layers. From an historical point of view, you can see that the Church, a powerful political force at the time, felt threatened by this girl who was amazingly popular among the French people and argued she had a direct connection with God. You can also read that it is a tale about Fanaticism. Fanaticism from Jeanne who goes to war after speaking to God and Fanaticism from her judges who will kill her because she doesn’t follow their dogma.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 490 Average listal rating (326 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 8.1


Notes: Apparently, this movie was the last one Charles Chaplin made during the silent era and it is yet another flick I have seen many times when I was a kid. Indeed, I remember it very well. At some point, the greatest classics directed by Charles Chaplin were broadcast on one of the French channels and my mother recorded all of them. Eventually, I was really grateful and I ended up watching this movie so many times back then. Personally, I tend to prefer this one over 'City Lights' but, I have to admit it, it is mostly pure our of pure nostalgia, I guess. Anyway, even though the plot was basically pretty basic, the whole thing worked amazingly well. Indeed, even though I'm usually a tough customer concerning comedies, I thought this one was just downright hilarious and completely entertaining from the beginning until the end. Eventually, the only thing that might have prevented this movie from becoming even better was probably the fact that there was no actual plot and the whole thing was therefore pretty random. Anyway, I still loved the damned thing.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 66 Average listal rating (29 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 7.4


Notes: To be honest, for some long stretches, nothing much really happened after all. I mean, basically, it is a very simple story and you might wonder if it really needed almost 2 hrs of running time but Erich von Stroheim has always been rather notorious for overindulging himself (that some people would love to watch a 8 hrs version of ‘Greed’ remains rather bewildering to me). However, there is no doubt that von Stroheim was basically born to play such characters, even if he was probably too old to play this character (I was not surprised to find out that Maude George, who played his mother in this movie, was actually three years younger than him). On top of that, I have to admit that I was actually really caught by surprise by the ending. Indeed, even though most of the movie was really romantic, there were 2 scenes that really stood out. First of all, even though Nicky seemed to be head over heels for Mitzy, he still went to a brothel spending hours with countless prostitutes which wasn’t exactly what you would expect from such a romantic feature. However, it actually did fit the character after all. Even more surprising was the ending though. Indeed, I was so sure that Nicky would dump Cecilia to end up with Mitzi but, no, he actually went for the money which was so dark and cynical but that’s actually how people worked (and probably still do) and it was such a strong ending.
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 189 Average listal rating (71 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 7.3


Notes: I wonder if I did read ‘The Fall of the House of Usher’ at some point but, in my opinion, this movie was pretty much the ultimate adaptation of Edgar Allan Poe's work I have ever seen so far. It’s funny because, in fact, Luis Buñuel was Assistant Director on this movie and did quit after arguing with Epstein over his decision to basically ignore the story written by Poe. Well, as far as I was concerned, it didn’t really matter since the end-result was just mad, so dark and ominous. The only minor critic I might have was that the miniature they used to show the actual house from a far was rather pathetic and unconvincing but everything else did look so spooky and strange. I have to admit that the damned thing was rather relentless though and I don’t think that there was a single scene which did seem to be ‘normal’. And, yet, I still worked so well and I was quite fascinated from the very first seconds until the end. To be honest, I’m not sure if this movie made much sense and the fact that I was tired when I watched it probably didn’t help. Still, I was really impressed and I wonder why this movie has not been more praised through the years. Sure, it is very old but some other older horror flicks did manage to become some major classics in the mean time. Anyway, the damned thing turned out to be quite mesmerizing to behold.
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