Wednesday, March 22, 2017

From 100 Years Ago, Charlie Chaplin's THE IMMIGRANT


In the 100 years since Charlie Chaplin made THE IMMIGRANT, the cinema has advanced immeasurably in technical sophistication, but the basic blueprint of what the film artist can do was already set by Chaplin and his contemporaries. Here, broad comedy and delicate artistry coexist, and the tension created, is the spark that gives movie comedy life.

It's important to note that the voyage to America undertaken by the immigrants in this film - a voyage undertaken by Chaplin himself when he came to America from his native England - was thought to be a universal subject at the time. This is because immigration was a fact of recent generational memory for most Americans, and sharing that immigrant experience was, and is, an important part of the American story.

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