101 Free Silent Films: The Great Classics


Watch over 100 free silent films. Includ­ing some of the most impor­tant films ever made. Watch films by Luis Buñuel and Sal­vador Dali, Char­lie Chap­lin, Dzi­ga Ver­tov, D.W. Grif­fith, Alfred Hitch­cock, Sergei Eisen­stein, Fritz Lang, F.W. Mur­nau and many more. For more great films, please vis­it our com­plete col­lec­tion of Free Movies Online.

  • Abra­ham Lin­coln — Free - D.W. Griffith’s biog­ra­phy of the beloved Unit­ed States pres­i­dent.
  • A Bur­lesque On Car­menFree – Orig­i­nal two-reel par­o­dy of Bizet’s Car­men by Char­lie Chap­lin. Also stars Leo White & Edna Pur­viance. (1915)
  • A Christ­mas Car­ol - Free — Marc McDer­mott stars as Ebenez­er Scrooge in this 1910 ver­sion of Dick­ens’ clas­sic ghost sto­ry.
  • A Dog’s Life — Free – This endear­ing short film tells the sto­ry of under­dogs, hunan and canine, suc­ceed­ing despite the odds. (1918)
  • A Fair Exchange — Free — Orig­i­nal­ly released as Get­ting Acquaint­ed, the film’s plot has been sum­ma­rized as fol­lows: “Char­lie and his wife are walk­ing in the park when they encounter Ambrose and his wife. The part­ners become fond of their coun­ter­parts and begin chas­ing each oth­er around. A police­man look­ing for a pro­fes­sion­al Don Juan becomes involved, as does a Turk.” (1914)
  • A Man with a Cam­eraFree – Dzi­ga Vertov’s exper­i­men­tal film about life as it is lived. A Sight and Sound mag­a­zine poll named it the 8th best movie ever made. (1929)
  • Aeli­taFree — A silent film direct­ed by Sovi­et film­mak­er Yakov Pro­tazanov. One of the ear­li­est full-length films about space trav­el, the most notable part of the film remains its remark­able con­struc­tivist Mar­t­ian sets and cos­tumes designed by Alek­san­dra Ekster. (1924)
  • After the BallFree — One of the first “adult” films in cin­e­ma his­to­ry. By the pio­neer­ing direc­tor Georges Méliès.
  • Alice in Won­der­land - Free – The first-ever film ver­sion of Lewis Carroll’s tale. Based on Sir John Tenniel’s orig­i­nal illus­tra­tions. (1903)
  • Anémic Ciné­ma - Free – Mar­cel Duchamp’s avant-garde film com­bines whirling opti­cal illu­sions, known as Rotore­liefs, with spi­ral­ing puns and com­plex word play. (1926)
  • Bat­tle­ship PotemkinFree – Direct­ed by the great Russ­ian direc­tor, Sergei Eisen­stein. One of the most influ­en­tial pro­pa­gan­da films of all time. Alter­na­tive ver­sion here. (1925)
  • Behind the ScreenFree – A short film writ­ten and direct­ed by Char­lie Chap­lin, the film is long on slap­stick, but it also gets into themes deal­ing with gen­der bend­ing and homo­sex­u­al­i­ty. (1916)
  • Between Show­ers Free — A short Key­stone film from 1914 star­ring Char­lie Chap­lin, Ford Ster­ling, and Emma Bell Clifton.
  • Bro­ken Blos­somsFree – Silent film direct­ed by D.W. Grif­fith and star­ring Lil­lian Gish. (1919)
  • Cham­pagne Free — A silent com­e­dy film based on an orig­i­nal sto­ry by Eng­lish writer and crit­ic Wal­ter C. Mycroft. (1928)
  • Char­lie Shang­haiedFree — Char­lie Chap­lin and his Tramp char­ac­ter gets shang­haied by crooks. (1915)
  • Charlie’s Recre­ation — Free — Out of cos­tume, Char­lie is a clean-shaven dandy who, some­what drunk, vis­its a dance hall. There the wardrobe girl has three rival admir­ers: the band leader, one of the musi­cians, and now Char­lie. (1914)
  • Cin­derel­laFree – This film by George Méliès is the old­est known film adap­ta­tion of the 1697 fairy tale. It was also appar­ent­ly the first movie to use a “dis­solve tran­si­tion” between scenes. (1899)




  • Das Wan­dernde Bild — Free — A silent, black and white film direct­ed by Fritz Lang released in 1920.
  • Der GolumFree – Paul Wegener’s Ger­man expres­sion­ist clas­sic, says Roger Ebert, “is a vivid piece of dark­ly toned fan­ta­sy that exert­ed a pow­er­ful influ­ence over both Euro­pean cin­e­ma and Hol­ly­wood.” (1920)
  • Die Nibelun­genFree – A series of two silent fan­ta­sy films cre­at­ed by Fritz Lang in 1924. Runs 5 hours.
  • Don QuixoteFree — Clas­sic adap­ta­tion of the Miguel de Cer­vantes’ nov­el (find in our col­lec­tion of Free eBooks), direct­ed by Georg Wil­helm Pab­st, and star­ring the famous oper­at­ic bass Feodor Chali­apin. (1933)
  • Down­hillFree – In this silent Hitch­cock film, a pub­lic school­boy takes the blame for a friend’s theft and his life falls apart in a series of mis­ad­ven­tures. Also released under the title, When Boys Leave Home. (1927)
  • Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde - Free – Hor­ror film based on Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel­la Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. (1912)
  • Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde — Free – John Bar­ry­more stars in the renowned silent adap­ta­tion of the Robert Louis Steven­son clas­sic. (1920)
  • Easy Street - Free – Char­lie Chap­lin steps for­ward and keeps the peace. (1917)
  • Easy Virtue - Free – Ear­ly silent film direct­ed by Alfred Hitch­cock. Loose­ly based on a play by Noël Cow­ard. (1928)
  • Emak-BakiaFree – Fea­tures film­ing tech­niques used by Man Ray, includ­ing rayo­graphs, dou­ble expo­sures, soft focus and ambigu­ous fea­tures. (1926)
  • Entr’Acte - Free — René Clair’s Dadaist mas­ter­piece. Great ear­ly avant-garde film. Fea­tures scenes with Mar­cel Duchamp and Man Ray. (1924)
  • Faust — Free - Ger­man expres­sion­ist film­mak­er F.W. Mur­nau directs film ver­sion of Goethe’s clas­sic tale. This was Murnau’s last Ger­man movie. (1926)
  • Franken­stein — Free - The first time Mary Shelley’s lit­er­ary was brought to the big screen. (1910)
  • Ghosts Before Break­fast (Vor­mit­tagsspuk) - Free – Silent avant-garde film by Hans Richter. The nazis destroyed the sound ver­sion of the film, deem­ing it “degen­er­ate art.” (1928)
  • GreedFree — Erich von Stroheim’s silent dra­ma orig­i­nal­ly ran 10 hours, but was even­tu­al­ly hacked down to two. It fol­lows a den­tist whose wife wins a lot­tery tick­et, only to become obsessed with mon­ey. (1924)
  • Harakiri — Free — Ear­ly silent film by Fritz Lang. (1919)
  • Häx­an — Free — Swedish/Danish silent hor­ror film writ­ten and direct­ed by Ben­jamin Chris­tensen. (1922)
  • Hell W10Free – The Clash stars in 1980s gang­ster par­o­dy. Writ­ten and direct­ed by Joe Strum­mer. (1983)
  • Intol­er­ance — Free — D.W. Griffith’s most ambi­tious silent film is one of the land­marks in cin­e­mat­ic his­to­ry. (1916)
  • La Souri­ante Madame BeudetFree – Ear­ly fem­i­nist film by Ger­maine Dulac. Fea­tures a woman trapped in a love­less mar­riage. (1922)
  • Joy­less StreetFree – Gre­ta Gar­bo stars in her sec­ond major role. One of the first films of the “New Objec­tiv­i­ty” move­ment. (1925)
  • Kid Auto Races at VeniceFree – It’s the first film in which Char­lie Chaplin’s icon­ic “Lit­tle Tramp” char­ac­ter makes his appear­ance. (1914)
  • L’Arrivée D’un Train En Gare De La Cio­tat - Free – One of the most famous ear­ly silent films shot by Auguste and Louis Lumière. (1895)
  • La Pas­sion de Jeanne d’ArcFree – Direct­ed by Carl Theodor Drey­er and star­ring Renée Jeanne Fal­conet­ti, this film is con­sid­ered a mas­ter­piece from the silent era. (1928)
  • Laugh­ing Gas - Free — Film star­ring Chap­lin is some­times known as ”Busy Lit­tle Den­tist”, “Down and Out”, “Laffing Gas”, “The Den­tist”, and “Tun­ing His Ivories”.
  • Le Bal­let Mécanique - Free — His­toric cin­e­mat­ic col­lab­o­ra­tion between Fer­nand Legér and George Antheil. (1924)
  • Le Retour à la Rai­sonFree – A film from the avant-garde Ciné­ma Pur move­ment shot by Man Ray in 1923.
  • Mabel’s Strange Predica­ment — Free — Watch lots of lots of high jinks go down in a hotel. (1914)
  • Mak­ing a Liv­ing - Free – Pre­mier­ing on Feb­ru­ary 2, 1914, Mak­ing a Liv­ing marks the first film appear­ance by Char­lie Chap­lin.
  • Menil­montantFree – When Pauline Kael, long­time New York­er film crit­ic, was asked to name her favorite film, this was it. French silent film. (1925)
  • Metrop­o­lisFree – Fritz Lang’s fable of good and evil fight­ing it out in a futur­is­tic urban dystopia. An impor­tant clas­sic. An alter­nate ver­sion can be found here. (1927)
  • Nos­fer­atuFree – Ger­man Expres­sion­ist hor­ror film direct­ed by F. W. Mur­nau. An unau­tho­rized adap­ta­tion of Bram Stoker’s Drac­u­la. (1922)
  • Octo­ber: Ten Days That Shook the World — Free – Orig­i­nal­ly called Oktyabr, Sergei Eisenstein’s film doc­u­ments the Russ­ian Rev­o­lu­tion of 1917. A mas­ter­piece by a pio­neer­ing film­mak­er. (1928)
  • Old and New - Free – Also called The Gen­er­al Line, Sergei Eisenstein’s film has been called a “bucol­ic epic about the Sovi­et strug­gle to col­lec­tivize agri­cul­tur­al pro­duc­tion.” Find alter­nate ver­sion at the Inter­net Archive here. (1929)
  • One A.M. — Free — The first silent film Char­lie Chap­lin starred in alone. (1916)
  • Pandora’s BoxFree – G.W. Pabst’s trag­ic melo­dra­ma about the fate of a care­free seduc­tress, mem­o­rably played by Louise Brooks. (1929)
  • Romance Sen­ti­men­taleFree – Direct­ed by Sergei Eisen­stein. (1930) Alter­nate ver­sion here.
  • Sher­lock Jr. – Free – A com­ic mas­ter­piece from the silent era. Stars Buster Keaton (1924)
  • Sher­lock Holmes and the Secret WeaponFree – Sher­lock Holmes res­cues an inven­tor of an new bomb site before the Nazis can get him. (1943)
  • Sun­rise: A Song of Two HumansFree — Made by the Ger­man expres­sion­ist direc­tor F.W. Mur­nau. Vot­ed in 2012, the 5th great­est film of all time. (1927)
  • The Adven­tur­er — Free – Char­lie Chap­lin plays an escaped con­vict who falls into favor with a wealthy fam­i­ly after he saves a young lady. (1917)
  • The Birth of a Nation — Free — Direct­ed by DW Grif­fith. A land­mark work in film his­to­ry (1915) with racist under­tones. (1915)
  • The Bond — Free — A pro­pa­gan­da film cre­at­ed and fund­ed by Char­lie Chap­lin for the­atri­cal release to help sell U.S. Lib­er­ty Bonds dur­ing World War I. (1918)
  • The Cab­i­net of Dr. Cali­gariFree – This silent film direct­ed by Robert Wiene is con­sid­ered one of the most influ­en­tial Ger­man Expres­sion­ist films and per­haps one of the great­est hor­ror movies of all time. Watch the restored ver­sion. (1920)
  • The Count — Free — The Count was Char­lie Chaplin’s 5th film for Mutu­al Films. Co-star­ring Eric Camp­bell and Edna Pur­viance, it is a sto­ry about Char­lie and his boss find­ing an invi­ta­tion to a par­ty from a real Count. (1916)
  • The CureFree — Chap­lin plays a drunk who checks into a health spa to dry out and com­e­dy ensues. (1917)
  • The Dev­il­ish Ten­antFree —  In this Georges Méliès, a new ten­ant moves in and fills the room with fur­ni­ture tak­en from his suit­case. (1909)
  • The Drey­fus AffairFree — Georges Méliès’ cre­at­ed a short docu­d­ra­ma on The Drey­fus Affair, as it unfold­ed in France. The film was banned and not seen until the 1970s. (1899)
  • The Fire­manFree — Char­lie Chaplin’s sec­ond short for Mutu­al con­tin­ued his focus on gags and situations—as the title sug­gests, Chap­lin plays the role of an inept fire­fight­er. (1916)
  • The Floor­walk­er — Free – Filmed for the Mutu­al Film Cor­po­ra­tion, the film fea­tured the first “run­ning stair­case” in cin­e­ma his­to­ry. (1916)
  • The Four Horse­men of the Apoc­a­lypseFree – Huge­ly pop­u­lar silent film that made Rudolph Valenti­no a star. (1921)
  • The Gen­er­alFree — Orson Welles said that Buster Keaton’s The Gen­er­al is “the great­est com­e­dy ever made, the great­est Civ­il War film ever made, and per­haps the great­est film ever made. Alter­nate ver­sion here (1926)
  • The God­dessFree — A clas­sic from the Gold­en Age of Chi­nese Cin­e­ma, star­ring the silent film icon Ruan Lingyu. (1934)
  • The Gold RushFree – Char­lie Chap­lin wrote, pro­duced, direct­ed and starred in The Gold Rush. Chap­lin repeat­ed­ly said that this is the film he most want­ed to be remem­bered for. (1925)
  • The Golem: How He Came Into the WorldFree – A fol­low-up to Paul Wegener’s ear­li­er film, “The Golem,” about a mon­strous crea­ture brought to life by a learned rab­bi to pro­tect the Jews from per­se­cu­tion in medieval Prague. Based on the clas­sic folk tale, and co-direct­ed by Carl Boese. (1920)
  • The Golem: How He Came Into the World — Free – The same film as the one list­ed imme­di­ate­ly above, but this one has a score cre­at­ed by Pix­ies front­man Black Fran­cis. (2008)
  • The Good for Noth­ing — Free — Made at the Key­stone Stu­dios, the film involves Chap­lin tak­ing care of a man in a wheel­chair. (1914)
  • The Great Train Rob­bery — Free — Ear­ly west­ern film by Edwin S. Porter. A land­mark in nar­ra­tive film­mak­ing. (1903)
  • The Hearts of Age — Free — The first film/short film shot by Orson Welles. It’s a play on Jean Cocteau’s movie, The Blood of a Poet. (1934)
  • The Hunch­back of Notre DameFree – With Lon Chaney. (1923)
  • The Immi­grantFree – Char­lie Chap­lin plays an immi­grant com­ing to the Unit­ed States who gets accused of theft along the way. (1917)
  • The Impos­si­ble Voy­ageFree ‑Direct­ed by Georges Méliès, this 1904 film, based on a Jules Verne’s play, is a satire of sci­en­tif­ic explo­ration in which a group of geo­g­ra­phers attempt a jour­ney into the inte­ri­or of the sun. (1904)
  • The KidFree – This was Char­lie Chaplin’s first full-length film as a direc­tor, and it is still con­sid­ered one of his best. (1921)
  • The Lady and the Hooli­ganFree — Russ­ian silent film direct­ed by Vladimir Mayakovsky and Yev­geni Slavin­sky. (1918)
  • The Last Laugh - Free – F.W. Murnau’s clas­sic cham­ber dra­ma about a hotel door­man who falls on hard times. A mas­ter­piece of the silent era, the sto­ry is told almost entire­ly in pic­tures. (1924)
  • The Lit­tle Match Girl - Free —  a 40-minute silent film by Jean Renoir based on a sto­ry by Hans Chris­t­ian Ander­sen. (1928)
  • The Lodger: A Sto­ry of the Lon­don Fog — Free — One of Hitchcock’s silent clas­sics. A land­la­dy sus­pects her lodger is a mur­der­er killing women around Lon­don. (1927)
  • The Lost World — Free — The “grandad­dy of mon­ster movies,” the film adap­ta­tion of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s clas­sic nov­el about a land where pre­his­toric crea­tures still roam. (1925)
  • The Manx­manFree – This was Hitchcock’s last silent film.
  • The Pawn­shopFree – Rich in slap­stick, The Pawn­shop was one of Chaplin’s more pop­u­lar movies for Mutu­al Film, the pro­duc­er of some of the great­est Chap­lin come­dies. (1916)
  • The Phan­tom Car­riageFree – One of the cen­tral works in the his­to­ry of Swedish cin­e­ma. Notable for its influ­ence on Ing­mar Bergman. Direct­ed by Vic­tor Sjöström, (1921)
  • The Phan­tom of the OperaFree – A clas­sic silent film fea­tur­ing Lon Chaney as the Phan­tom. (1925)
  • The Plea­sure Gar­den — Free — After sev­er­al col­lab­o­ra­tive efforts, Hitch­cock made his solo direc­to­r­i­al debut in the Ger­man-British co-pro­duc­tion based on a nov­el by Oliv­er Sandys.
  • The RingFree – This silent film focus­es on a love tri­an­gle between two men and a woman. One of Hitchcock’s minor works. (1927)
  • The RinkFreeThe Rink, Chaplin’s 8th film for Mutu­al Films, show­cas­es the actor’s roller skat­ing skills. (1916)
  • The Sealed RoomFree – Direct­ed by DW Grif­fith, the film is based on based upon Edgar Allan Poe’s “A Cask of Amon­til­la­do”, with appear­ances by Mary Pick­ford and Mack Sen­nett.
  • The Seashell and the Cler­gy­manFree – The first sur­re­al­ist film ever. Direct­ed by Ger­maine Dulac. (1928)
  • The SheikFree – Silent film with Rudolph Valenti­no. (1921)
  • The Toll of the SeaFree — The first gen­er­al release film in tech­ni­col­or. 1922.
  • The Tramp Free — The film made Chaplin’s great Tramp char­ac­ter famous. (1915)
  • The VagabondFree – A silent film by Char­lie Chap­lin that co-starred Edna Pur­viance, Eric Camp­bell, Leo White and Lloyd Bacon. Chap­lin appears as The Tramp. (1916)
  • The Wiz­ard of OzFree – The ear­li­est sur­viv­ing film ver­sion of L. Frank Baum’s 1900 nov­el. (1910)
  • The Wiz­ard of OzFree – The first major film adap­ta­tion of the clas­sic nov­el. Fea­tures Oliv­er Hardy as the Tin Woods­men. (1925)
  • Tillie’s Punc­tured RomanceFree – Among oth­er things, the film is notable for being the last Chap­lin film didn’t write or direct by him­self. (1914)
  • Trip to the Moon / Le Voy­age dans la luneFree – French black & white silent sci-fi film loose­ly based on two nov­els: From the Earth to the Moon by Jules Verne and The First Men in the Moon by H. G. Wells. (1902)
  • Un Chien AndalouFree – Sal­vador Dali and Luis Buñuel’s short, silent sur­re­al­ist film. (1929)

For a full line­up of great movies, please vis­it our com­plete col­lec­tion of Free Movies Online.

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