In my quest to see every significant film from 1890 to the present I began adding films to my queue from the beginning of each decade: 1890, 1900, 1910. etc. (I know some will say that 1960, for example, is the last year of the 50's and 1961 is the first year of the 60's). I'll add almost anything to my queue from 1890 to about 1940 because so little survives but I'm more selective from 1940 on. After I've seen every available film from a particular year I will post those films that I rated 5/5 Stars. I welcome your comments. objections, derision, etc.
Here were my top 10 from 1920
1. L’Hirondelle et la mesange (André Antoine)
2. Way Down East (D.W. Griffith)
3. One Week (Edward F. Cline & Buster Keaton)
4. Just Pals (John Ford)
5. The Penalty (Wallace Worsely)
Top 10 from DB and KT: Full Article
1. The Last of the Mohicans (Maurice Tourner)
2. Way Down East (D.W. Griffith)
3. Why Change Your Wife? (Cecil B. DeMille)
4. Erotikon (Mauritz Stiller)
5. Conrad in Quest of His Youth (Willaim C. de Mille)
6. The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (Robert Wiene)
7. High and Dizzy (Harold Lloyd)
8. Neighbors (Buster Keaton)
9. Barrabas (Louis Feuillade)
10. Mästerman (Victor Sjöström)
Yeah I decided not to do a netflix link for the Buster Keaton shorts. Kino released a great DVD and Blu-Ray set with all his short films, but it isn't available from Netflix.
I know they're also available on various silent slapstick sets, and Kino's old DVDs of Keaton's feature films included several of his shorts as bonus features. Didn't want to link to those though, because if netflix sends you Kino's new Ultimate Edition DVDs instead it won't have the short films on it. And I was too lazy to look through the box sets netflix does stock to see which shorts were where.
My top films from 1921:
1. El Dorado (Marcel L’Herbier)
2. The Wildcat (Ernst Lubitsch)
3. Backstairs (Leopold Jessner)
4. The Phantom Carriage (Victor Sjöström)
5. Hard Luck (Edward F. Cline & Buster Keaton)
2. Der müde Tod (Fritz Lang)
3. Johan (Mauritz Stiller)
4. Miss Lulu Bett (William C. deMille)
5. The Blot (Louis Webber)
6. The Boat (Edward F. Cline & Buster Keaton)
7. The Playhouse (Edward F. Cline & Buster Keaton)
8. The Kid (Charles Chaplin)
9. The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (Rex Ingram
10. El Dorado (Marcel L'Herbier)
11. The Indian Tomb (Joe May)
Haven't seen Johan, but all those films are lurking around various dark corners of the internet.
Admirable goal, though unfortunately a lot of important films from the silent era are criminally unavailable on DVD. Having a region free DVD player is useful in accessing some harder to find stuff, and there's a lot more of these films floating around certain back channels of the internet. But a lot of stuff is only available to those people lucky enough to be able to dive into film archives.
Coincidentally David Bordwell just made a great post on his blog about early German cinema. Unfortunately a lot of these films are unavailable commercially so we can only enjoy his frame grabs and trust his analysis.
David Bordwell and Kristien Thompson also have a great yearly tradition where they put together a list of their top 10 films from the year, 90 years ago.
Last year I also decided to start a yearly tradition where I write up a huge list of my favorite films for each year so decades from now I can look back at how my tastes changed and evolved.
I'll post both my own lists and the lists from DB and KT under your own.
According to my research there are 82 films from 1910 still in print, 46 of which are available on DVD or online. According to the IMDb 166 films were released in 1910.
No, I'm still working on 1930. It will be years before I get around to 1939 if I stick to this regimen. I have seen several films from 1939 though. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington and Stagecoach are two I would probably give five stars though it's been a while since I've seen them.