Les Vampires

Les Vampires (1915-1916) Director: Louis Feuillade Les Vampires is a series of French short serials that were released in the early days of pioneer film-making. They are silent episodic films (10 episodes in total) and last over 400 minutes long. Curiously enough, the episodes are not about actual vampires, and instead they are about a gang of evil people, … Continue reading Les Vampires

People on Sunday

People on Sunday (1930) Director: Robert Siodmak, Edgar Ulmer "Menschen am Sonntag" is a short German silent film released in 1930, lasting slightly longer than one hour. It is a film largely without a plot, filmed over several Sundays in and around Berlin. All the actors were daily workers in Berlin -ordinary people enjoying their … Continue reading People on Sunday

The Peloponnesian War, Book I: Setting the Stage for War

Thucydides begins his historia of the great war between the Peloponnese and Athens (431 BC - 404 BC) by noting that he is an "Athenian" and that the he wrote of the war "from the beginning" because it is "more worthy of relation than any that had preceded it." In saying so, Thucydides cleverly draws distinction between … Continue reading The Peloponnesian War, Book I: Setting the Stage for War

Anna Christie

Anna Christie (1930) Director: Clarence Brown "Garbo Talks!" as the advertisements displayed for the first film starring silent film's most popular asexual and mysterious actress. She was the Swedish actress and with Anna Christie she secured her first nomination for an Academy Award for Best Actress. She was well-celebrated for starring in other films like Flesh … Continue reading Anna Christie

La Chienne

La Chienne (1931) Director: Jean Renoir La Chienne (sometimes called "The Bitch") is the second sound film of the great Jean Renoir's career, son of painter Pierre-Auguste Renoir. It was later remade by Fritz Lang as Scarlet Street in 1945. Michel Simon, the lead actor, is best remembered for his roles in other films: Boudu Saved From Drowning and L'Atalante by Jean Vigo. … Continue reading La Chienne


Morocco (1930) Director: Josef von Sternberg Morroco is a classic film - the first of six collaborations between von Sternberg and Marlene Dietrich in Hollywood (1930-1935) not including the German The Blue Angel which was also released in 1930 but didn't appear in American theaters until 1931. Morocco also starred Gary "The Tall Glass of Water" Cooper. It was Dietrich's … Continue reading Morocco

The Freshman

The Freshman (1925) Director: Fred C. Newmeyer and Sam Taylor The Freshman is the original college satire film. It was Harold Lloyd's second big hit comedy film after Safety Last! in 1923. The film was shot at a variety of California college campuses, including USC and the sports teams at the close of the film were actually Stanford and UC … Continue reading The Freshman