When Charlie the Tramp wanders into a mission he is smitten by Edna and puts back the collection box which he has taken. Reformed, he becomes a policeman and is assigned to rough-and-tumble Easy Street. Unable to trick or beat Eric the Tough, he puts Eric's head in a gas pipe and anesthetizes him. A hero, he now helps many poor people living on Easy Street. Eric escapes jail, Edna is kidnapped, but Charlie (recharged after sitting on a doper's needle) conquers all. Easy Street is transformed as is Eric. Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
"Easy Street" is unsurpassed among Chaplin's short comedies, an extremely funny film that also has depth and sensitivity. The combination is done especially well here. Charlie plays a tramp who has a religious experience, becomes a policeman, and tries to clean up the violence and crime on "Easy Street". He tries to help the many poor of the neighborhood, while combating the street's toughs, leading to some memorable confrontations with burly villain Eric Campbell. There is some terrific slapstick interspersed with some compassionate scenes of the effects of poverty and crime on the innocents of the area. Chaplin uses a lot of his comic talent and a good variety of gags, and combines it with some thoughtful portrayals of life.
This is Chaplin at his best, and it is as good as any of his many short films. It will be a favorite for most Chaplin fans, and a good place to start for those wanting to take a look at his short features.
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