26 August 2010
Modern Times (1936)
Buck up - never say die. We'll get along.
So basically: Charlie Chaplin's character works in a factory doing a menial job. On the brink of a nervous breakdown from the tediousness, he is sent to a mental hospital. After being cured, he is sent out, but with no job. When a mix-up ends with him being thrown in jail, he finds it cozy and wants to stay, even after being released. He tried to get back in by taking the blame from a bread thief - a beautiful girl. The two of them then hook up and have dreams of living in a nice, secure home.
This movie isn't Chaplin's funniest films, but it's definitely one of his best - and one of my personal favourites. In this film, Chaplin dabbles in the new world of talking pictures. The film is still considered a silent, but he adds some talking - never direct dialogue, always through a medium such as a recording or video - and sound effects, like bells and dogs barking. The new technology - so well paralleled in the film's factory settings - also lends itself to a brilliant scene in which Charlie sings! (really, the film is worth it just for this!). Aside from this, the plot is clever and inspiring and makes a very cute story between Chaplin and Goddard.
This movie totes deserves to be on the list.
Ziggi seal of approval!