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Tango Tangle (1914)

 |  Short, Comedy  |  9 March 1914 (USA)
5.4
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Ratings: 5.4/10 from 681 users  
Reviews: 10 user | 5 critic

Out of costume, Charlie is a clean-shaven dandy who, somewhat drunk, visits a dance hall. There the wardrobe girl has three rival admirers: the band leader, one of the musicians, and now Charlie.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Tipsy Dancer
...
Band Leader
...
Clarinettist
...
Guest in Police Costume
Minta Durfee ...
Guest
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Storyline

Out of costume, Charlie is a clean-shaven dandy who, somewhat drunk, visits a dance hall. There the wardrobe girl has three rival admirers: the band leader, one of the musicians, and now Charlie.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Short | Comedy

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Release Date:

9 March 1914 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Charlie's Recreation  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Some sources credit the role of the Hat Check Girl to Minda Durfee; this role is actually played by Sadie Lampe; Durfee plays one of the guests at the dance hall. See more »

Goofs

The tie and collar Ford Sterling removes while fighting with Charlie re-appears in the next shot. See more »

Connections

Featured in Charlie: The Life and Art of Charles Chaplin (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

Fascinating for the experienced viewer
18 January 2010 | by (NSW, Australia) – See all my reviews

Watching silent comedies is an almost lost art, one that today's younger viewers must teach themselves through an open-minded exposure to multiple examples, always reminding themselves that the intent to tell an amusing story clearly is always there, even if at first glance the impression is of fast-paced incomprehensible chaos. With practice one can learn to understand the conventions of the day, follow the action and enjoy the multitude of jokes and amazing performances.

Even someone who has managed this for comedies of the 1920s, and who can both appreciate and enjoy, say, The General and The Gold Rush, may find their first exposure to Keystone material of the 1910s throws them back into bewilderment. Yet once one adjusts to the conventions of the time (such as the fast paced, physically detailed and extremely demonstrative acting that makes most '20s performances seem restrained by comparison), even these very early, frenetic and largely improvised Keystones can delight.

This one is particularly interesting for several reasons already cited in other reviews: the lack of character makeup on Chaplin and Sterling (both almost always appearing in other films with fake facial hair of various sorts), the amazing athleticism of Arbuckle, the wholly natural reactions of the actual onlookers in the "found" dance hall location to the antics of the leads. It repays a second and even a third viewing for those seeking to learn the skill of following early Keystone comedies.

This was one of Sterling's last handful of films at Keystone and one of Chaplin's first. At the time, Sterling was the bigger star. They work very well together here, especially in their fight scenes, which have tell-tale signs of being more improvised than rehearsed or precisely choreographed, yet are nevertheless creative, clearly told and quite entertaining.

If you've never seen a silent Chaplin short, this is not the one to start with. (Try one of the Mutuals, like Easy Street or The Immigrant) But if you've some familiarity with the genre, the circumstances of the shooting of this one make it one of the most interesting of his first half-dozen or so.


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