1. Furcht / Fear (1917, Robert Wiene) 4/10
2. Thomas Graals bästa film / Thomas Graal's Best Film (1917, Mauritz Stiller) 5.5/10
3. Unheimliche Geschichten / Eerie Tales (1919, Richard Oswald) 4.5/10
4. Daddy-Long-Legs (1919, Marshall Neilan) 5/10
5. Vingarne / The Wings (1916, Mauritz Stiller) 6.5/10.
An earlier version of Dreyer's Michael. Hits many strong notes, but a little too basic.
6. Madame de Thèbes / The Son of Destiny (1915, Mauritz Stiller) 5.5/10
7. Sången om den eldröda blomman / Song of the Scarlet Flower (1919, Mauritz Stiller) 6/10
Had great expectations, but turned out to only be a moderately good melodrama. A shame given what Stiller had already made at this point.
8. Meyer aus Berlin / Meyer from Berlin (1919, Ernst Lubitsch) 6.5/10
Fittingly cheeky for Lubitch in this era, but surprisingly flat and ordinary cinematically. The Oyster Princess from the same year looks spectacular, this looks almost a little ugly in spots. Still very fun, though the comedy is too exaggerated.
9. Goluboy ekspress / China Express (1929,
With spectacular shots, action packed mayham and great soviet montage this propaganda film may be a bit too heavy, but watching the slave revolt extent from the back compartment to the front was a great experience (and will remind you of a few very recent outings). 8/10.
10. Seven Footprints to Satan (1929, Benjamin Christensen)
At time so absurd that it comes across as brilliantly surreal, and with the final twist everything will certainly make sense. I can see why many would find this insanity great, but it just struck me as far too thin and silly, especially the opening, and from a cinematic perspective it could certainly have been far more visual. Note, this is a horror comedy, and expect to be entertained. A good effort for sure. 6/10.
11. The Jack-Knife Man (1920, King Vidor)
Pretty standard sentimental fare with a weather-beaten but good-hearted poor/tramlike man, and a child to care for. 6/10.
12. Maldone (1928, Jean Gremillon)
Poetic and rythmic cinema, with the kind of sensibility that makes Gremillon one of France's most interesting directors of this period. Sadly an over-reliance on a relatively dull story arc leaves it shy of greatness. 7/10
13. Nochnoj izvozchik / The Night Coachman (1928, Georgi Tasin)
Heartbreaking and psychological look into a sense of extreme hopelessness. While it is ticking in just under the hour, it feels far grander, largely due to the sense of being in a nightmare while fully awake. 8/10.
14. Arsena Jorjiashvili / The Murder of General Gryaznov (1921, Ivane Perestiani)
Poor propaganda, without any visul finesse. 3/10
15. Prividenie, kotoroe ne vozvrashchaetsya / The Ghost That Never Returns (1930, Abram Room)
The version I watched had some badly done voice acting added over random scenes (often without translations as well), the silent underneath however was very good. Visually secure and a solid journey, that may just be a little too underdone in the middle stages. The opening and the world it created was great, and the quality of the copy was far better than expected. 7/10.
16. Poslednij attraktsion / The Last Attraction (1929, Ivan Pravov & Olga Preobrazhenskaya)
Could have been far better visually but this story of broadly neutral, even anti-soviet theater people, forced to work for the revolution, while slowly seeing that it's not all bad, was in a way cutely comedical and surpriingly not so positive of the Soviets as you'd expect a propaganda film to be. 6/10.
17. Ich küsse Ihre Hand, Madame / I Kiss Your Hand, Madame (1929, Robert Land)
Isn't it unfair that this nobleman had to become a butler and thus lacks the respect of his "peers". Despite the slightly off framing, this was a cute and fun drama comedy, well done in every way. 7/10.
18. Chuji Tabinikki Daisanbu Goyohen (1927, Daisuke Itô)
Strong early samurai film, with many great shots and an interesting character journey. 7/10.
19-26. La maison du mystère / House of Mystery (1923, Alexandre Volkoff)
A 10 part dramatic serial, with a very long build up that packs quite a lot of magic. Honestly, if cut shorter it would not be a great film - the plot is fairly straight forward, as are the characters, but the atmosphere and drama built up over 6 hours is an almost unparallelled experience. A clean story, with majestic atmosphere, great production values, solid acting and strong visuals. The quality of the print is breathtaking, and it feels like an epic from the very beginning. Can't recommend this enough. 8.5/10.
20. Le avventure straordinarissime di Saturnino Farandola (1913, Marcel Perez, Luigi Maggi)
Really fun and fluid, though overly silly and disjointed adventure film, that can never sit still, jumping from adventure to adventure. While the monkeys were silly, the effects in general were impressive, as was the fact that they moved the camera far more than most films made around this time, and clearly had a lot of fun here. Definitely worth a viewing. 6/10.
21. J'accuse (1919, Abel Gance)
This was a shock. I know my general annoyance when it comes to Gance is known here. Yes, this was heavy handed, but to such epic and sensual proportions the melodrama genuinly worked, and the last 30 minutes are simply spectacular. Could he have ruined it with the utter arbitrarity of "I accuse"?, obviously, but the cinema is still spectacular and I couldn't help but loving it. Moving performances, brilliant choreography, and a true emotional punch. A genuine and brilliant epic, which also feels well ahead of it's time. 9/10.
22. Rapsodia satanica (1917, Nino Oxilia)
This could have been great. Playful, clever and interesting use of colours. In the end the pay off was just a little too slim and empty. 7.5/10.
23. Filibus (1915, Mario Roncoroni)
Fun romp, with not only a female villain outsmarting a detective, but a really outlandish adventure crime narrative, just as the below serial, but in short. Stiff in execution, yes, but a good view overall. 6/10.
24-27. Judex (1916, Louis Feuillade)
12 part serial (with an uncounted prologue as the longest episode) covered a caped, but unmasked crusader. Good basic entertainment. 6/10.
28. L'Odissea (1911, Francesco Bertolini, Giuseppe de Liguoro & Adolfo Padovan)
Adapted frompaintings of Homer's Oddyssey rather than the story itself, the film feels disconnected, but offers good effects - adly that's about it. 4/10.
29. Eternal Love (1929, Ernst Lubitsch)
Obviously well made, and I might have liked it more if the print was better, perhaps it was actually a beauty to look at - there are some really well done scenes here, including great suspense and drama. I didn't fully buy the love story, but a very good film all the same. 7.5/10.
30. Der Geiger von Florenz / Impetuous Youth / The Violinist of Florence (1926, Paul Czinner)
Bit of a thin runaway teenager comedy, but cute enough and the new print is quite wonderful. 5.5/10.
That's it for me this time, was a solid batch, and I'm happy I could finally catch up on more 1910s films. Thank you RGB for pointing me in the direction of the Italian films.