It’s election week here in the UK, and while I know the decision is easier for some of us than others, voting in a new government is always a serious business. So why not distract yourself from all that by using your franchise to support silent cinema as well? I can’t make many promises, but I can assure you that voting in the Silent London Poll is more fun than a General Election debate.
Today, Silent London is eight years old. If this were a marriage we’d be exchanging bronze gifts. But I consider this more of an open relationship, so don’t worry about buying me anything too expensive – unless you absolutely insist.
Thank you for reading, whether you are new around here or have been with me for the full eight-year stretch. If it’s the latter, you really do deserve a medal. All I can offer you is this deathless gif of Buster Keaton and Rosalind Byrne in Seven Chances instead:
Fabulous isn’t it? You’ll have guessed by now that I am after something. And yes, it’s quite tradition by now. Today we open the Silent London Poll of 2018, and I want your votes. Lots of em. Very few of the questions are mandatory, so even if you think that you haven’t watched that many silents this year, do take a look and see if you can support the films, film-makers, restorers, musicians, venues, festivals and so on that have made your year in silent cinema rich and exciting. I think 2018 has been a vintage year, what about you?
Are you struggling to remember the festivals, films, and music that you loved the most in 2017? Well take a look back through the pages of Silent London, or the Silent Film Calendar or ithankyou, both of which sites kept up to date with silent happenings all year round.
Don’t be afraid to lobby for your favourites, or to vote for events outside the UK. The poll is now a global affair and the more votes the merrier. Sharing is caring!
I will be closing the poll on 20 December, so you have plenty of time to ponder your choices – but don’t forget to vote!
Refresh your memory by finding out who won last year, here.
Silent London will always be free to all readers. If you enjoy checking in with the site, including reports from silent film festivals, features and reviews, please consider shouting me a coffee on my Ko-Fi page.
There ain’t no party like a Silent London Poll-Winners’ Party. Why? Partly because this is a virtual party, so you can join in the fun, and still stick to your Dry January #goals. Alternatively, take a shot every time you spot a typo and boy will this blogpost go with a swing. Not only that, but we politely declined Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway’s offer to host this year, so fingers crossed, the prizes will go to their rightful winners, right away.
While I shuffle the envelopes and the guests sashay down the red carpet, a little announcement. Every year the poll gets more international (although obviously the British bias is strong). Plus, this year we had the most votes we had had in years. As you are free to nominate whatever you like (and you did!), the answers were pretty diverse. So in the 2017 poll, I am awarding Gold, Silver and Bronze awards for the very first time. At Silent London, we like to share the love!
So, as the sports commentators say, let’s find out who, and what, podiumed this year!
BRONZE: It’s another Flicker Alley release at number three! The notorious Behind the Door, directed by Irvin V Willat, restored by the San Francisco Silent Film Festival, and once seen, never forgotten.
BRONZE: The Informer places here too, for its theatrical run after the 2016 LFF Archive Gala.
Best modern silent of 2017
GOLD: Can you guess? It’s another gold medal for London Symphony!
SILVER: Lots of you voted for Bill Morrison’s magical documentary Dawson City: Frozen Time. And who can blame you? Not strictly a modern silent but I see exactly why you love it.
BRONZE:The Moonshiners takes third place. This Finnish short, directed by Juho Kuosmanen, is actually a remake of Finland’s first ever fiction film – the original is sadly now lost. You can read more about The Moonshiners in the February 2018 edition of Sight & Sound, too.
Hello dear readers. Unfortunately we took a break in 2013, but this year we want to resume normal service and bring back the Silent London Poll. It’s an expanded survey this year – you can vote for your favourite screening in several categories, your favourite venue and festival, and even your silent hero of 2014.
It won’t take you long to fill in, and we’ll be publishing the results on the site at the end of the year, so please have a little think about your highlights of the year, and share your favourites with everyone else!
The poll closes on 18 December 2014. Thanks for taking part!
There are a heck of a lot of end-of-year lists floating around at the moment. But most of them are dominated by talkies. To rectify this, allow me to present The Silent London End of Year Poll. I’m looking for the best silent film show of the year – anywhere in the world. And I’d like your help.
If you love going to watch silent films with live music then there have been ample opportunities to indulge your passion this year. The scene is thriving in London, not that we wouldn’t like to see more screenings. And my Twitter spies tell me that from New York to Paris to California to Sussex people are enjoying silent cinema shows of all kinds. So what has been your personal highlight of 2010? The show that introduced you to silent film or reinvigorated your appreciation of it? A new film or musician that blew you away – or a classic done just right?