MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 19,945 this week

Recreation (1914)

 -  Comedy | Short  -  13 August 1914 (USA)
5.0
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.0/10 from 494 users  
Reviews: 5 user | 4 critic

Charlie is walking in the park. A girl leaves a seaman on one bench and joins Charlie on another. The seaman wakes up. He and Charlie stage a brick fight. Policemen get hit and arrest both ... See full summary »

Director:

(uncredited)
0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb Picks: October

IMDb's editors share the movies and TV shows they are excited to see in October.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 39 titles
created 06 Jun 2012
 
a list of 1045 titles
created 09 Sep 2012
 
list image
a list of 43 titles
created 10 months ago
 
a list of 40 titles
created 8 months ago
 
a list of 36 titles
created 2 weeks ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Recreation" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Recreation (1914)

Recreation (1914) on IMDb 5/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Recreation.

User Polls

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Laughing Gas (1914)
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Charlie pretends to be a dentist though he is only his assistant. When a patient can't stop laughing from the anesthesia Charlie knocks him out with a club. He is sent to the drug store, ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Fritz Schade, Alice Howell
The Masquerader I (1914)
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Charlie is an actor in a film studio. He messes up several scenes and is tossed out. Returning dressed as a lady, he charms the director. Even so, Charlie never makes it into film, winding up at the bottom of a well.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle, Chester Conklin
The Rounders (1914)
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Two drunks live in the same hotel. One beats his wife, the other is beaten by his. They go off and get drunk together. They try to sleep in a restaurant using tables as beds and are thrown ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle, Phyllis Allen
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Charlie meets a couple and agrees to care for the man's crippled uncle. After the couple breaks up the man's new girl drops some eggs which Charlie slips on while trying to control the ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Charley Chase, Peggy Page
The Tramp (1915)
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The Little Fellow finds the girl of his dreams and work on a family farm.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Billy Armstrong, Lloyd Bacon
The Cure (1917)
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

An alcoholic checks into a health spa and his antics promptly throw the establishment into chaos.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Eric Campbell
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Father takes his family for a drive in their falling-apart Model T Ford, gets in trouble in traffic, and spends the day on an excursion boat. As the boat is about to leave Charlie rushes ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Edna Purviance, C. Allen
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

The plot is a satire derived from Hugh Antoine D'Arcy's poem of the same title. The painter courts Madeleine but loses to the wealthy client who sits for his portrait. The despairing artist... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Cecile Arnold, Jess Dandy
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

Charlie and a rival vie for the favors of their landlady. In the park they each fall for different girls, though Charlie's has a male friend already. Charlie considers suicide, is talked ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Chester Conklin, Cecile Arnold
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Charlie is janitor for a firm the manager of which receives a threatening note about his gambling debts. He throws a bucket of water out the window which lands on his boss and costs him his... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, John T. Dillon, Al St. John
His New Job (1915)
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Charlie is trying to get a job in a movie. After causing difficulty on the set he is told to help the carpenter. When one of the actors doesn't show, Charlie is given a chance to act but ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Billy Armstrong, Agnes Ayres
A Busy Day (1914)
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

A jealous wife is chasing her unfaithful husband during a parade, after he starts to flirt with a pretty woman.

Director: Mack Sennett
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Mack Swain, Phyllis Allen
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Edit

Storyline

Charlie is walking in the park. A girl leaves a seaman on one bench and joins Charlie on another. The seaman wakes up. He and Charlie stage a brick fight. Policemen get hit and arrest both men. During an ensuing fight on the dock the policemen, the seaman, Charlie and the girl wind up in the water. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Short

Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

13 August 1914 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Spring Fever  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Released as a split reel along with the documentary The Yosemite (1914). See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
More complex than it looks.
21 April 2007 | by (Luoyang, China) – See all my reviews

Chaplin's early short films are common targets for complaints about their simplicity and lack of real story or plot, but I think it is important to remember that the films were made at time when huge audiences wanted to see films exactly like this. Chaplin had no great directors of the past to look to for inspiration, and film itself was an emerging medium, so really the only thing he had available to him was to see what worked and what didn't work by trial and error. Bricks and punches and kicks and everyone falling into the lake made people laugh, so that's what Chaplin gave them, and it helped him to achieve the success that allowed him to bring us the truly great films of his later career, so I think it's unfair to judge these films by the same standards as what Chaplin achieved later, and it also prevents you from really enjoying these films for what they are.

Audiences in 1914, for example, would have been fascinated by something as simple as one frame showing a person throwing a brick off screen, and then the next shot showing the brick flying into the screen. It is such a simple technique, but this is how movies started, and something this simple would have nearly knocked people over, because what they were looking at was really a moving picture, and one which really came to life because it moved so effortlessly around the park or the stage or the set or wherever the film took place. The important thing back then was not a moving story, but a moving picture. And if you could throw in a few punches and a few cops getting hit with bricks, so much the better.

Also, if you think that it is a joke to say that a film like this was "Written and Directed by Charlie Chaplin" since there is clearly no writing or direction involved, I would argue that you have simply never considered what is involved in making a short film. Yes, Chaplin has said on numerous occasions that in those days all he needed was a cop, a pretty woman, and a park and he had the ingredients for a short film, but he didn't mean that he could get away with throwing together something that simple, he meant that that was all he needed to satisfy his audience, and any entertainer's number one concern is to give the people what they want.

Since Chaplin began his career acting on stage, he was thinking about the immediate appeal to his audience, not about critics or how history would see his films. He wanted people to laugh while sitting in their seats in the theater in 1914, not in 90 years when they were watching DVD compilations of his early work. The film even seems to have been randomly titled, since "Recreation" really has absolutely nothing to do with what happens on the screen. It could even refer more to the film itself being made by Chaplin and a couple of friends just for fun than the story that unfolds on the screen.

There are a couple of classic Chaplin moments in the film, such as when he tries to put both of his feet up on a fence rail, and when a police officer sees him just as he is about the throw a brick, but for the most part the film is just a raucous slapstick romp involving a girl who wanders away from her boyfriend, who falls asleep while sitting with her on a park bench, and then a fight ensues over her affections and ultimately involves a couple of cops who want to find out who's throwing bricks around.

As some reviewers have noted, it seems to be a good example of what Chaplin was talking about when he said that in the old days all he needed was a cop, a girl, and a park bench and he could make a film, but I think this is a little misleading, because the film is more complex than it looks. Yes, of course the comedy is very, very simple, but it's a mistake to say there is no direction or story or plot. Scripts for silent films were very different than talking films, and while a lot of the comedy is clearly improvised, there is still more planning involved in putting something like this together than you might think.

I made a few 6 or 8 minute films for film classes when I was in college, and at the time I was so proud of them I almost couldn't stand it, but looking back, it's amazing how flawed and simplistic they are, despite the hours and hours of work I put into planning and shooting and editing them. I think that in order to really enjoy Chaplin's early films for what they are (and they are certainly still enjoyable, despite the physical decay and the lack of depth or story), you have to have either made your own short films or be willing to be open minded about something that was made in a very different time for very different audiences and with very different technology. If you consider the other films that were coming out at the time, these were some of the best.


9 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Recreation (1914) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page