In our era of relentless "noise", if you will, there's a growing appreciation for silent film, as seen in the rise of festivals and the flourishing availability of silent film on Blu-ray. Fans and initiates are certain to enjoy Michael Barrett's 10 best silent films released on Blu-ray this year.
In today's installment of our retrospective survey of Alfred Hitchcock's singular career, we revisit his first major statements. Thrillingly, all of Hitchcock's trademark themes and signature moves are visible in these early masterpieces -- an uncanny talent, Hitch arrived, it would seem, fully formed.
Flicker Alley's The Extraordinary World of Charley Bowers gathers and restores what remains of an elusive and very clever film pioneer, and Kino Lorber shares the silently charming magic of Herbert Brenon's Peter Pan.
Filmmaking was only one element of a much wider feminist movement that was manifesting itself in various forms, from the flapper to the suffragette to the birth control advocate to the bohemian female writer and political activist.
While Anthony Asquith's Shooting Stars and Underground look excellent on Kino Lorber's digital restoration, Arthur Robison's The Informer, looks most spectacular, thanks to working from the original negative and a tinted nitrate print.
Over 90 years later, silent film The Kid Brother works well as entertainment for modern audiences, for whom its calculated old-fashioned corn and apparent simplicity aren't a problem but par for the course.
Silent film actor Alice Howell conveyed the persona of a working-class clodhopper with a huge pile of frizzy hair plopped on top of her head, and she threw herself into physical comedy as much as Lucille Ball.
Sponsored by the Library of Congress, Mostly Lost is an annual film workshop in which unidentified or mis-titled silent films are screened to an audience of scholars and fans who try to figure out what they are. Sometimes they succeed.
One way to understand the form of Walther Ruttmann's Berlin, Symphony of a Great City, is to see it as producing states of flow that reinforce a flat ontology among humans, animals, machines, buildings, bodies of water, etc.