For a while now I have been contemplating how filmmaking changed with the introduction of sound in film. The dawn of the “talkies” is an innovation that I am not at all sure we have fully come to terms with…

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The 1920s holds a special place within cinema history as German Expressionism makes its way onto American shores. Known for its angular, almost surreal, settings and its narrative gloom, German Expressionism gave silent cinema some of the most fantastical and…

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I was raised on a healthy diet of classic film and television growing up, everything from It Happened One Night to My Three Sons and so on. Once I set my sights on horror as a genre, it would not be long until…

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You will no doubt hear the names Carl Theodor Dreyer and Ingmar Bergman in any and every conversation about iconic 20th-century Scandinavian filmmakers—and rightfully so; perhaps someone will even mention Jan Troell or, more recently, the notorious Lars von Trier…

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Acting is hard. Directing is hard. It would seem the combination of the two would be near impossible. However, throughout the long and storied history of cinema, there have been handfuls of great actors who have tried their hand at…

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Unlike other comedic stars of the silent film era, Buster Keaton stands above comparisons to his most obvious counterpart, Charlie Chaplin. Keaton was a different kind of man making different films. In his movies, Keaton has been described as “a…

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Although I’ve included a few clips from City Lights, I highly recommend watching the entire 87-minute film. It moves quickly, is remarkably approachable (even to those unfamiliar with older and silent films), and available in numerous editions on YouTube, as…

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What do you think of when you imagine vampires? Perhaps you think of Bela Lugosi in the classic 1931 Dracula. Or you might think of the recently passed Christopher Lee, star of 10 vampire movies with one of the more…

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The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari is the silent film that made me want to watch more silent films. It was the very first one I saw and it remains my favorite of the era to this day. The 1920 production is considered…

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The movie theaters of today can be a cavalcade of senses. Besides the obvious images that move across the screen, we hear the musical score, we feel the ground shake during a big explosion, or we can even go to…

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