Passion of Joan of Arc (1928) is pretty graphic, man


So, I've just seen Passion of Joan of Arc from 1928 and I'm blown away.

The acting is superb but what struck me was how graphic it was. It had blood (real too!), disturbing close ups on torture tools, showed Joan's burning corpse and a visible breast.

This was frikking 1928! Not even Griffith's Birth of a Nation from 1915 was that graphic. Was PJA unique or were there other silent films that were graphic as well?

Well, the French made some porn flicks in the 20s (my favourite is Messe Noire) so I definitely wouldn't be surprised by just a visible breast in a non-titillating situation.

I believe I saw breasts in many 20s films, but I don't want to spread false information. What I am sure of is side-nudity in Dovhenzko's Earth (1930) and breasts visible in see-through shirt in Medvedkin's Happiness (1935). There's also a cinema pur film Le Retour a la Raison and it features breasts (Venus-like at that!). Those breasts belong to Kiki de Montparnasse! It was made in 1923.

Obviously erotica is a genre dating back to the beginnings of cinema, so bare-chested females weren't really as rare as you make them be. There's even a compilation of these early erotica flicks called The Good Old Naughty Days that proves that the French were very kinky back then.

As far as graphic violence goes, I believe I could find some examples too but the only one I can cite without looking it up is a Griffith short in which an Indian picks up a baby and flings it to the ground. A really brutal moment!
I'm not nice. I'm mean. Deal with it.

“I was cured, all right!”
If I remember well, Häxan (1922) has some visible breasts too.
“We can destroy what we have written, but we cannot unwrite it.”

Check at about 00:45 for two rows of topless women in a parade for Ben-Hur in 1925.

Holy ****!

Yeah I think Haxan was full of nudity and tortue. In the Big parade i believe a mans leg gets blown off. Theres brief boobs in Faust. A but and some gore in All quiet on the western front.

Theres a film called Ectasy I think its Czech and it had nudity and a female orgasm.