Minimal Dialogue Moviesby mifunesamurai | created - 17 May 2011 | updated - 8 months ago | Public
Movies with minimal dialogue to tell a story (no silent movies, well maybe one or two for very good reasons.) I'm sure there are more movies out there but I can't think of them at the moment. (Listed alphabetically.)
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1. Neco z Alenky (1988)
Not Rated | 86 min | Animation, Adventure, Fantasy
A surrealistic revision of Alice in Wonderland.
Surreal piece from the master of live-animation.
2. Alaska (1989)
A slaughterhouse worker appears to be romantically involved with his boss's wife. They plan to leave the country together, but at the airport she waits for him in vain. Slowly but surely ... See full summary »
A little gem with hardly any dialogue.
3. All Is Lost (2013)
PG-13 | 106 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
After a collision with a shipping container at sea, a resourceful sailor finds himself, despite all efforts to the contrary, staring his mortality in the face.
Votes: 65,670 | Gross: $6.26M
Silence in the great wide ocean... (thanks for the pick Marcus Mansukhani)
4. Another Forever (2016)
72 min | Drama
You know the moment when your sorrow is so profound that you can't help but imagine yourself somewhere far away... this is the story of someone who did more than just imagine.
A journey through love, loss and rediscovery...
5. Ariel (1988)
Not Rated | 73 min | Comedy, Crime, Romance
A Finnish man goes to the city to find a job after the mine where he worked is closed and his father commits suicide.
Aki Kaurismäki is a director who doesn't like his characters talking too much.
6. Atlantis (I) (1991)
78 min | Documentary, Music
Atmospheric soundtrack follows this compilation of nature footage that focuses on the Atlantic ocean and various life forms that live, mate and die in it.
Director: Luc Besson
Votes: 1,609 | Gross: $0.14M
7. Badlands (1973)
PG | 94 min | Crime, Drama
An impressionable teenage girl from a dead-end town and her older greaser boyfriend embark on a killing spree in the South Dakota badlands.
Somehow Malick's films do have plenty of dialogue, but they seem to be minimal because his style of shooting lends itself to the long landscape shots his characters are caught up in.
8. The Bear (1988)
PG | 96 min | Adventure, Family, Drama
An orphan bear cub hooks up with an adult male as they try to dodge human hunters.
Votes: 14,201 | Gross: $31.75M
No talking animals here (thanks for pick, Rick Baer).
9. The Black Stallion (1979)
G | 118 min | Adventure, Family, Sport
While traveling with his father, young Alec becomes fascinated by a mysterious Arabian stallion who is brought on board and stabled in the ship he is sailing on. When it tragically sinks ... See full summary »
Ballard understands nature and the language of silence it speaks.
10. Snow White (2012)
PG-13 | 104 min | Drama, Fantasy
A twist on the Snow White fairy tale that is set in 1920s Seville and centered on a female bullfighter.
Votes: 8,672 | Gross: $0.28M
Who needs sound in this day and age when you have creative filmmakers who can tell a story visually...
11. The Brown Bunny (2003)
Not Rated | 93 min | Drama
Professional motorcycle racer Bud Clay heads from New Hampshire to California to race again. Along the way he meets various needy women who provide him with the cure to his own loneliness, but only a certain woman from his past will truly satisfy him.
Votes: 12,294 | Gross: $0.37M
Gallo doesn't need to say much.
12. Cast Away (2000)
PG-13 | 143 min | Adventure, Drama, Romance
A FedEx executive must transform himself physically and emotionally to survive a crash landing on a deserted island.
Votes: 438,660 | Gross: $233.63M
Hanks in a silent world of survival. Thanks junaidmeo189.
13. The Color of Pomegranates (1969)
Not Rated | 79 min | Biography, Drama, History
A super-stylized, surreal biography of Armenian troubadour Sayat Nova, whose life is depicted through non-narrative amalgamations of poetic images.
A visual poem about a poet's life full of stunning framing compositions and art direction, but let down by the lack of mood lighting...
14. Cyclo (1995)
123 min | Crime, Drama
A young man who struggles through life by earning some money with his bicycle-taxi in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh city) gets contact to a group of criminals. They introduce him to the mafia-world ... See full summary »
Votes: 4,102 | Gross: $0.08M
Anh Hung Tran is a master in telling his stories with stunning images.
15. Un Flic (1972)
PG | 98 min | Crime, Thriller
After a shaky first heist, a group of thieves plan an even more elaborate- and more risky- second heist.
Votes: 5,990 | Gross: $0.05M
The silent heist. Melville is the king of minimal dialogue.
16. Un Coeur en Hiver (1992)
105 min | Drama, Romance
Beautiful violin virtuoso Camille has two obsessions: the music of Ravel, and a friend of her husband's who crafts violins. But his heart seems to be as cold as her playing is passionate.
Votes: 7,776 | Gross: $1.67M
Great use of dialogue without being too obvious in the underlying art of emotional suppression of love & lust!
17. Le Dernier Combat (The Last Battle) (1983)
R | 92 min | Sci-Fi
In a post-apocalyptic future where no one is able to speak, the few remaining humans fight over resources in order to survive.
Amazing debut from Besson.
18. $ (1971)
R | 121 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama
A bank security expert plots with a call girl to rob three safety deposit boxes containing $1.5 million in cash belonging to three very different criminals from a high-tech security bank in Hamburg, Germany.
Caper films are perfect for minimal dialogue and Brooks has fun with this.
19. The Driver (1978)
R | 91 min | Action, Crime, Thriller
A getaway driver becomes the latest assignment for a tenacious detective.
Votes: 11,040 | Gross: $4.91M
Walter Hill's action thriller masterpiece where the driving does all the talking...
20. Elephant (2003)
R | 81 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller
Several ordinary high school students go through their daily routine as two others prepare for something more malevolent.
Votes: 76,072 | Gross: $1.23M
The kids are not alright (thanks for the pick Evita Geradts).
21. Fu sheng (1996)
95 min | Comedy
An aging Hong Kong couple move to Australia with their two youngest sons. They stay with a daughter who has already begun a successful career. Meanwhile their eldest daughter lives in ... See full summary »
It has some dialogue but a string of strong images are constructed to tell a powerful story of searching for a place to call home; hence the title.
22. I Fidanzati (1963)
Not Rated | 77 min | Drama
In the industrial North, Giovanni is a skilled factory worker offered a promotion if he'll go to Sicily for 18 months to assist in a new department. His impending absence strains his ... See full summary »
Another human observational classic from Olmi.
23. Gerry (2002)
R | 103 min | Adventure, Drama, Mystery
A friendship between two young men is tested when they go for a hike in a desert and forget to bring any water or food with them.
Votes: 16,108 | Gross: $0.24M
The desert is a silent world. (Thanks for the reminder phil-253.)
24. Ekspres, Ekspres (1995)
After his father's death, a young man (Gregor Bakovic) uses the black mourning flag and sews himself a pair of trousers. He then takes a train trip and meets a variety of bizarre characters... See full summary »
Delightful piece of cinema story telling.
25. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)
R | 178 min | Western
A bounty hunting scam joins two men in an uneasy alliance against a third in a race to find a fortune in gold buried in a remote cemetery.
Votes: 563,636 | Gross: $6.10M
It's all about the stares. (thanks featherwind)
26. Ida (2013)
PG-13 | 82 min | Drama
Anna, a young novitiate nun in 1960s Poland, is on the verge of taking her vows when she discovers a dark family secret dating back to the years of the German occupation.
Votes: 41,199 | Gross: $3.83M
Brilliant use of black and white in a creative 4:3 frame, and the story itself is also unique without having to use too many words...
27. L'illusionniste (2010)
PG | 80 min | Animation, Drama
A French illusionist finds himself out of work and travels to Scotland, where he meets a young woman. Their ensuing adventure changes both their lives forever.
Votes: 30,367 | Gross: $2.23M
Tati in animation form is a real treat...
Not Rated | 201 min | Drama
A lonely widowed housewife does her daily chores, takes care of her apartment where she lives with her teenage son, and turns the occasional trick to make ends meet. However, something happens that changes her safe routine.
Votes: 4,577 | Gross: $0.02M
As picked by Listener Canon Hernandez...
29. Ju Dou (1990)
PG-13 | 95 min | Drama, Romance
A woman married to the brutal and infertile owner of a dye mill in rural China conceives a boy with her husband's nephew but is forced to raise her son as her husband's heir without ... See full summary »
Votes: 6,356 | Gross: $1.99M
30. Koyaanisqatsi (1982)
Not Rated | 86 min | Documentary, Music
A collection of expertly photographed phenomena with no conventional plot. The footage focuses on nature, humanity and the relationship between them.
Votes: 29,511 | Gross: $1.72M
Okay, it's just music, but with 90 minutes of pure intense images of beauty and destruction.
31. The Last Laugh (1924)
Not Rated | 90 min | Drama
An aging doorman, after being fired from his prestigious job at a luxurious Hotel is forced to face the scorn of his friends, neighbours and society.
Votes: 10,181 | Gross: $0.09M
Classic silent movie but without those dialogue cards!
32. Life on a String (1991)
110 min | Drama, Music, Romance
A blind man's master told him that after he has broken 1000 strings on his Banjo, he can open the Banjo to get a script for his eyes. After 60 years he broke the 1000th string...
For some reason I can't remember too much dialogue in this but only recall strong images...
33. The Long Day Closes (1992)
PG | 85 min | Biography, Drama
The Long Day Closes is the story of eleven-year-old "Bud." A sad and lonely boy, Bud struggles through his days. With cinema as his main source of solace, he haunts the local movie-house. ... See full summary »
Votes: 2,062 | Gross: $0.16M
Terence Davis knows how to tell a story without being too loud.
34. Los Muertos (2004)
78 min | Drama
Vargas, a 54 year old man, gets out of jail in the prvince of Corrientes, Argentina. Once released, he wants to find his now adult daughter, who lives in a swampy and remote area. To get ... See full summary »
Another pick from Lucas Vinicius...
35. Night of Fear (1972)
54 min | Horror, Thriller
Insane sadistic hermit stalks and captures those who get lost in his part of the woods. A young woman whose car broke down is about to find out what he does with them next.
What I admire about this film is the lack of dialogue, so there was no Aussie twang to cringe about. The effective campy horror suspense music with the wild and sometimes abstract editing made this silly slasher more engrossing...
36. A Man Escaped (1956)
Not Rated | 101 min | Drama, Thriller, War
A captured French Resistance fighter during WWII engineers a daunting escape from prison.
Bresson, the master cinema story teller.
37. Meek's Cutoff (2010)
PG | 104 min | Drama, Western
Settlers traveling through the Oregon desert in 1845 find themselves stranded in harsh conditions.
Votes: 9,467 | Gross: $0.98M
As recommended by phil-253 and worth the viewing...
38. Millennium Mambo (2001)
R | 119 min | Drama, Romance
Taipei. A voice off-camera looks back ten years to 2000, when Vicky was in an on-again off-again relationship with Hao-Hao. She's young, lovely, and aimless. He's a slacker. Cigarettes and ... See full summary »
Votes: 3,627 | Gross: $0.01M
Hsiao-Hsien Hou seems to be a director of few words...
39. Moebiuseu (2013)
Unrated | 89 min | Drama, Horror
A father driven into desire, a son coveting that of his father's, and the sorrowful maternity that hovers them into tragedy.
Cheeky non-dialouge film from Kim Ki-duk (thanks for the pick kdp90125)
40. Mon Oncle (1958)
Not Rated | 117 min | Comedy
Monsieur Hulot visits the technology-driven world of his sister, brother-in-law, and nephew, but he can't quite fit into the surroundings.
I can't put all of Jacques Tati films, but this is at the top of my list.
41. Mute Witness (1995)
R | 95 min | Horror, Thriller
A mute makeup artist working on a slasher film being shot in Moscow, is locked in the studio after hours. While there she witnesses a brutal murder, and must escape capture.
Votes: 4,699 | Gross: $1.20M
And mute it shall remain...
42. The Naked Island (1960)
Not Rated | 96 min | Drama
A family of four are the sole inhabitants of a small island, where they struggle each day to irrigate their crops.
A Shindo classic with no dialogue (thanks for the pick @Ivan Pančetović)
43. Never Cry Wolf (1983)
PG | 105 min | Adventure, Drama
A government researcher, sent to research the "menace" of wolves in the north, learns about the true beneficial and positive nature of the species.
Votes: 6,691 | Gross: $29.60M
Superb observation on human verses nature.
44. Once Upon a Time in the West (1968)
PG-13 | 164 min | Western
A mysterious stranger with a harmonica joins forces with a notorious desperado to protect a beautiful widow from a ruthless assassin working for the railroad.
Votes: 244,773 | Gross: $5.32M
Just the opening scene is a classic.
45. Il Posto (1961)
Not Rated | 93 min | Drama
A very young college graduate attempts to obtain a position with a large corporation.
Votes: 3,325 | Gross: $0.01M
The life of a young simple postman beautifully captured by Olmi.
46. Quest for Fire (1981)
R | 100 min | Adventure, Drama, History
This story takes place in prehistoric time when three tribesmen search for a new fire source.
Votes: 17,816 | Gross: $20.96M
Nice to see that there was no dialogue used in this, cause there really wasn't any back then.
47. Hong gao liang (1988)
91 min | Drama, History, Romance
In 1930s China a young woman is sent by her father to marry the leprous owner of a winery. In the nearby red sorghum fields she falls for one of his servants. When the master dies she finds... See full summary »
Zhang Yimou at his finest.
48. Davandeh (1984)
94 min | Drama
After enrolling in a school, an impoverished boy finds conflict with his classmates and decides to compete to earn their respect.
The life of an Iranian street kid caught by the visual beauty of storytelling.
49. Samson and Delilah (2009)
101 min | Drama, Romance
Samson and Delilah's world is small- an isolated community in the Central Australian desert. When tragedy strikes they turn their backs on home and embark on a journey of survival. Lost, ... See full summary »
Powerful, depressing but rewarding...
50. The Secret Adventures of Tom Thumb (1993)
Unrated | 60 min | Animation, Adventure, Sci-Fi
A boy born the size of a small doll is kidnapped by a genetic lab and must find a way back to his father in this inventive adventure filmed using stop motion animation techniques. Tom meets... See full summary »
Votes: 1,282 | Gross: $0.07M
A dark silent world.
51. Sidewalk Stories (1989)
R | 97 min | Comedy
Nearly silent comedy filmed in black and white follows a street artist (Charles Lane), who rescues a baby after her father was murdered. The artist then sets off to find the mother, but has... See full summary »
Votes: 244 | Gross: $0.13M
A homage to Chaplin.
52. The Silence (1963)
R | 96 min | Drama
Two estranged sisters, Ester and Anna, and Anna's 10-year-old son travel to the Central European country on the verge of war. Ester becomes seriously ill and the three of them move into a hotel in a small town called Timoka.
Bergman does just that.
53. Silent Movie (1976)
PG | 87 min | Comedy
A film director and his strange friends struggle to produce the first major silent feature film in forty years.
Votes: 13,851 | Gross: $36.15M
Yes, its a silent movie, but made during the talkies, and made by Mel Brooks.
54. Sofie (1992)
146 min | Drama
From 1886 to 1907 in the life of Sofie, a Jew in Copenhagen who is nearly 29, with no marital prospects, living with her loving parents. An artist, Hans Hojby, meets Sofie and is entranced,... See full summary »
Votes: 184 | Gross: $0.29M
Ulmann follows in the steps of master filmmaker Bergman.
55. Solaris (1972)
PG | 167 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi
A psychologist is sent to a station orbiting a distant planet in order to discover what has caused the crew to go insane.
Images are enough.
56. Somewhere (2010)
R | 97 min | Comedy, Drama
After withdrawing to the Chateau Marmont, a passionless Hollywood actor reexamines his life when his eleven-year-old daughter surprises him with a visit.
Votes: 38,527 | Gross: $1.77M
There is some dialogue, but not for plot purposes. All the emotions are emoted through the strong images.
57. Spirits of the Air, Gremlins of the Clouds (1989)
93 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi
Brother and sister endure alone together in a post-apocalyptic Outback until the sudden arrival of a stranger.
Proyas' dark silent world in outback Australia...
58. Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron (2002)
G | 83 min | Animation, Adventure, Family
A wild stallion is captured by humans and slowly loses the will to resist training. Yet throughout his struggles for freedom, the stallion refuses to let go of the hope of one day returning home to his herd.
Votes: 51,605 | Gross: $73.28M
Interesting pick by @Mounir Maged Youssef.
59. The Tale of Ruby Rose (1987)
PG | 100 min | Drama, Horror, Thriller
In the 20's, Ruby Rose lives alone with her husband Henry and their stepson Gem in the cold mountains of in Tasmania, Australia. While Henry hunts with Gem, Ruby stays at home missing her ... See full summary »
In the amazing haunting mind of Ruby Rose.
60. Themroc (1973)
100 min | Comedy
Made without proper language, just gibberish and grunts, this is an absurdist comedy about a man who rejects every facet of normal bourgeois life and turns his apartment into a virtual cave.
Brilliant social satire with more grunting than dialogue.
61. Three Monkeys (2008)
Unrated | 109 min | Drama
A family suffers from a major communication breakdown during their struggle to get through their hardships.
Votes: 15,781 | Gross: $0.04M
Very slow moving but effective with some brilliant cinematic moments...
62. Plemya (2014)
Unrated | 126 min | Crime, Drama
A deaf mute boy joins a boarding school for similar children. Confronted by the violent and criminal antics of some of the other boys and girls, he struggles to conform and join the 'tribe'.
Votes: 8,351 | Gross: $0.15M
A silent and harsh world for our deaf mute (thanks for the pick Lucas Vinicius)...
63. A torinói ló (2011)
Not Rated | 155 min | Drama
A rural farmer is forced to confront the mortality of his faithful horse.
Votes: 11,972 | Gross: $0.05M
Chosen by @Ivan Pančetović.
64. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
G | 149 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi
Humanity finds a mysterious, obviously artificial object buried beneath the Lunar surface and, with the intelligent computer H.A.L. 9000, sets off on a quest.
Votes: 485,886 | Gross: $56.95M
Kubrick challenges the mind.
65. Under the Skin (I) (2013)
R | 108 min | Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller
A mysterious young woman seduces lonely men in the evening hours in Scotland. However, events lead her to begin a process of self-discovery.
Votes: 100,888 | Gross: $2.61M
A wonderful strange trip, but thanks for the pick @Marko Konfic...
66. Walkabout (1971)
GP | 100 min | Adventure, Drama
Two young siblings are stranded in the Australian Outback and are forced to cope on their own. They meet an Australian boy on "walkabout": a ritual separation from his tribe.
Roeg's stunning photography of the barren Aussie landscape
67. WALL·E (2008)
G | 98 min | Animation, Adventure, Family
In the distant future, a small waste-collecting robot inadvertently embarks on a space journey that will ultimately decide the fate of mankind.
Votes: 819,113 | Gross: $223.81M
The perfect example of modern day filmmaking without too much words. (Thanks for the pick, Caldlow.)