incredibly hands down one of the greatest films ever!
Oh, it is the greatest silent film ever! No foolin’.
oh YES YES YES i seconded!!!!
this and “Man With The Movie Camera” are my favorite.
If were making lists, The Crowd needs to be added.
Might be the greatest film ever.
Permanently in the top ten.
Other great silents that come close? Maybe “La Roue”, but no, not really. La Roue is a technical marvel with some powerful and spiritual moments. Napoleon is a masterpiece and constantly moves the cinema forward from start to finish, but it lacks the depth and power of Joan. “Sunrise” has one of the most important and beautiful tracking shots in all of cinema, but doesn’t come close. “Siegfried” is another epic, but a rung below Napoleon. “The End of St. Pertersberg” is the greatest of the Soviet silent pictures, and could vie for the second greatest silent film, in my book.
But there is no real competition from other silent films in regards to which is the best ever. “Passion of Joan of Arc” is undisputable. Very few films would I even put in the same breath with it, silent or otherwise.
The competition is pretty crowded in this catagory but The Passion of Joan of Arc has as good a claim as any I can think of.
oh thats what im talking about JASON! well said!
IT IS!!!!!!!! My wife, who hasn’t been able to sit through (or get emotionally envolved) in any silent movies, was in tears by the end. To me that means that that film (sans the music criterion offers) is shockingly powerful. And not only powerful (because Faces of Death is powerful) but even on an artistic level it’s ages above the rest. Surely it’s the greatest silent movie and surely it’s one of the greatest films ever.
Ooohh, i must agree with this thread
Many competitors in this category.
My favoirte silent film is Ozu’s “I Was Born But. . .” Chaplin’s “City lights” is scarcely chopped liver.
I also greatly admire L’Herbier’s “L’Argent.”
As for Dreyer I prefer “Gertrud.”
“can the ‘passion of joan of arc’ arguably be the greatest silent film ever?”
Yes. You can argue any film ever made is the greatest as long as you have the ability to back up your opinion.
totally agree. dreyer’s editing and compositions in this film truly makes it a work of art. unlike anything i’ve seen from that time period in film. if someone disagrees with this comment or can think of other films that proves this statement wrong, please send the titles my way so that i can check them out. i really enjoy these types of films and haven’t really found anything similar to PoJoA yet. thanks in advance.
Yes. With “Greed,” “Broken Blossoms” and “The General” tagging right along.
It’s a crowded field. From the visual perspective alone I’d have to cite Lang’s NIBELUNGEN and METROPOLIS, Leni’s THE MAN WHO LAUGHS, Galeen’s STUDENT OF PRAGUE, Pabst’s PANDORA’S BOX and certainly Murnau’s FAUST and SUNRISE…
But for images and content, JOAN just might be the best.
I am often surprised that students appreciate JOAN, given that it is b&w, silent, and with intertitles. The new choral and instrumental score certainly helps.
As for rating the silents, I see it as a close call between:
I WAS BORN BUT…
THE KID (Chaplin short)
COPS (Keaton short)
A CORNER IN WHEAT (D. W. Griffith short)
THE LAST LAUGH
THE MAN WITH A MOVIE CAMERA
UN CHIEN ANDALOU
NANOOK OF THE NORTH
Do you guys watch it silently or with the score?
I like the score, but I’ve seen it without, and it’s still as powerful.
You can “arguably” say that any silent film is the greatest of all silent films.
It definatley deserves it’s place among the greatest, but for me, the greatest silent films are
Victor Sjöström’s The Phantom Carriage
Jean Epstein’s The Fall of the House of Usher
Louis Feuillade’s Les Vampires
Yasujiro Ozu’s I Was Born But…
I’ve never seen the un-Coppallacized version of Gance’s Napoleon, but even that is amazing enough to top the list.
thanks for the choices.
i’ve actually seen a lot of these, but i will definitely check out the ones i haven’t.
I’ve never seen Potemkin. but i wish i have. Joan of Arc is still my favorite silent film ever.
I really think Falconetti’s performance is just so incredible. The close-up was mastered and utilized so well. I would also put this on one of the greatest performances of all time list. I saw with score and live person translating the subtitles! Frankly, 30 minutes after the screening, I uncontrollably wept. I was lucky: it was the first silent film I’d ever seen all the way thru and the first on a big screen in 35mm.
it’s definitely one of the number 1’s. there are tons of number 1’s, though.
I think the question here is Falconetti’s performance. It is a substantial silent film no doubt and you can argue it is on a very short list but that performance by Falconetti just doesn’t generate much dissent if you call it the greatest silent performance or even the greatest performance regardless of era.
In my History of Film: Silent Era class, my professor opened it with The Passion of Joan of Arc to whet our appetite. It’s a great choice, really, to introduce silent era. As others have said, semantically yes, anyone can argue that The Passion of Joan of Arc is the greatest silent movie ever, just as anyone could argue that Greed is or whatever. I think it’s important to note, though, that as silent cinema goes, if you aren’t introducing a slapstick comedy to someone Passion is one of the few that is really easy to get into for those who don’t already have the interest to see silent movies.
I’m watching this for the first time tonight. Excited? You betcha.
YES! Got to watch a print of this film, it holds up. Oh what a beautiful film it is.
the greatest silent film of all time is probably a Murnau
either The Last Laugh or Sunrise
but let’s see where it falls if i were to come up with a top 10 silents:
2—The Crowd (1928)
3—Seventh Heaven (1927)
4—Battleship Potemkin (1925)
6—The Last Laugh (1924)
7—Pandora’s Box (1929)
8—The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928)
9—The Four Horseman of the Apocalypse (1921)
of course, there are at least 10 more or so that could equally be called the “greatest” along with those ten, so yeah, i guess it could be argued that it’s the greatest.
for those of you about to ask:
12—Street Angel (1928)
14—The Diary of a Lost Girl (1929)
15—Un Chien Andalou (1928)
16—The General (1927)
17—The Wedding March (1928)
18—Broken Blossoms (1919)
19—The Thief of Bagdad (1924)
20—Man with a Movie Camera (1929)