MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 5,417 this week

Easy Street (1917)

 -  Short | Comedy  -  22 January 1917 (USA)
7.7
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.7/10 from 2,761 users  
Reviews: 24 user | 15 critic

A reformed tramp becomes a police constable who must fight a huge thug who dominates an inner city street.

Director:

(uncredited)
0Check in
0Share...

Editors' Spotlight

Sundance 2015

Watch our IMDb & AIV Sundance Studio Interviews with Keith Simanton

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 23 titles
created 19 Aug 2013
 
a list of 28 titles
created 22 Dec 2013
 
a list of 34 titles
created 6 months ago
 
list image
a list of 29 titles
created 1 month ago
 
a list of 47 titles
created 3 weeks ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Easy Street" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Easy Street (1917)

Easy Street (1917) on IMDb 7.7/10

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

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Easy Street.

User Polls

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Work (1915)
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Charlie and his boss have difficulties just getting to the house they are going to wallpaper. The householder is angry because he can't get breakfast and his wife is screaming at the maid ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Billy Armstrong, Marta Golden
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Charlie and his partner are to deliver a piano to 666 Prospect St. and repossess one from 999 Prospect St. They confuse the addresses. The difficulties of delivering the piano by mule cart,... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Mack Swain, Fritz Schade
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Charlie and another waiter must become bakers when the regular bakers go out on strike. The strikers put dynamite in a piece of bread which is delivered to the cake counter. It winds up in the oven and explodes.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Chester Conklin, Fritz Schade
The Adventurer I (1917)
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The Little Tramp escapes from prison; saves a girl and her mother from drowning; and creates havoc at a swank party.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Eric Campbell
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

This is a padded-out, four-reel version of the two-reel short of the same title released in 1915, a spoof of the opera and film versions of Bizet's Carmen. Darn Hosiery, a Spanish officer, is led astray by the gypsy girl Carmen.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Peter Sellers
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 Immigrant (1917)
Short | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Charlie is an immigrant who endures a challenging voyage and gets into trouble as soon as he arrives in America.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Eric Campbell
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 5.6/10 X  

Charlie and his wife are walking in the park when they encounter Ambrose and his wife. The partners become fond of their counterparts and begin chasing each other around. A policeman ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Phyllis Allen, Mack Swain
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Charlie is hanging around in the park, finding problems with a jealous suitor, a man who thinks that Charlie has robbed him a watch, a policeman and even a little boy, all because our friend can't stop snooping.

Directors: Joseph Maddern, Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Minta Durfee, Edgar Kennedy
The Bond (1918)
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Charlie and friends illustrate various bonds in life and the most important, Liberty Bonds for the war...

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Albert Austin
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Charlie's wife sends him to the store for a baby bottle with milk. Elsewhere, Ambrose offers to post a love letter for a woman in his boarding house. The two men meet at a restaurant and ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Mabel Normand, Mack Swain
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
The Derelict (as Charlie Chaplin)
...
The Mission Worker
Eric Campbell ...
The Bully
Edit

Storyline

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 <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Short | Comedy

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

22 January 1917 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Calle Easy  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (restored) | (Buenos Aires Festival Internacional de Cine Independiente)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The lamppost used in the famous scene between Charles Chaplin and Eric Campbell fell on Chaplin during filming, requiring his hospitalization. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Chief of Police: [title card] Your beat is Easy Street.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Chaplin's Goliath (1996) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Love backed by Force, Forgiveness Sweet, Brings Hope & Peace to Easy Street
23 May 2005 | by (Westchester County, NY) – See all my reviews

I've been a Chaplin fan since I was in grade school, and Easy Street was the movie that converted me for keeps. It wasn't the first of his films I saw, but once I'd seen it I knew that Charlie Chaplin was truly as great as his reputation suggested. He's wonderful here, at the peak of his powers, funny and moving and seemingly super-human like some kind of cartoon dynamo. And today, more than 30 years since I first encountered it (and almost 90 years since it was made!) this is a film I could watch again anytime, not just because it's funny-- although it is --but also for darker, more melancholy reasons. Easy Street is certainly a comedy, but it's no one's idea of a light-hearted romp: the humor in this story is rooted in poverty, violence and substance abuse, and unfortunately all of these things are just as relevant today as they were in 1917. It's well known that Chaplin grew up in dire poverty, and it's reasonable to assume that the squalid world of this ironically titled work is based on his childhood memories. This film stands as proof that the greatest comedy is born out of pain, and that's why I can return to it again and again, for although human suffering is always topical and always relevant, so is the urge to transcend suffering through humor. In this film Chaplin triumphs over the deprivations of his own childhood, and viewers can share in his triumph.

In the opening scene we find Charlie fallen on hard times, no longer the dapper Gentleman Tramp of earlier appearances but a real derelict, ragged, pale, and sleeping on the ground. He is drawn to a nearby mission by the sound of singing, joins the congregation and soon pledges to go straight; he even proves his conversion is genuine by pulling the collection box from his baggy pants and returning it to the startled minister. Before long Charlie has applied for the job of police officer in the roughest neighborhood imaginable, Easy Street, a slum ruled by an enormous bully, magnificently portrayed by actor Eric Campbell. The unfortunate Mr. Campbell, who would be killed in a car accident less than a year after giving this performance, deserves a belated nod of respect for making Easy Street such a memorable experience. Although clearly intended as a comic caricature Campbell's nameless bully is nonetheless a formidable figure, a mighty beast with a shaved head and heavy eyebrows, and the close-ups that reveal Campbell's stage makeup do nothing to diminish his powerful aura.

The film's most unforgettable sequence comes when Officer Charlie, dressed in a Keystone Cop style uniform as he nervously walks his beat for the first time, suddenly comes face-to-face with this ogre several times his size. The scene is filmed in a single lengthy take, beginning with a tracking shot as Charlie strolls down the sidewalk, encounters the bully, and then tries to stand up to him. The bully, who appears to be made of granite, becomes increasingly sure of himself as Charlie falters. When Charlie finally resorts to clubbing him over the head it has no effect whatever; in fact, the bully impassively offers his head for more clubbing, just to demonstrate how little it bothers him. Charlie tries to flee, but the bully yanks him back and starts toying with him, like a cat tormenting a mouse before moving in for the kill. Scary, right? Well it's funny in the movie, but scary too, and it comes as a relief when Charlie (in an iconic moment as familiar as Harold Lloyd dangling from the clock) resourcefully uses a nearby gas lamp to subdue the bully-- temporarily, anyway.

While the scenes with Campbell are highlights there are also a number of low-key sequences involving the lady from the mission, played by Chaplin's perennial leading lady Edna Purviance, and during these scenes we get a vivid picture of life on Easy Street. Edna takes Charlie to a flat full of kids whose exhausted-looking parents obviously can't cope. Charlie, impressed with the scrawny Dad's ability to father so many children, quietly pins his own badge on the man's chest. It's a sadly funny moment, but the larger picture is bleak, and before the story is over we've been presented with images of domestic abuse and drug addiction. None of this material is prettified or sentimentalized in the "Hollywood" manner; this looks more like newsreel footage, and some viewers may well find it depressing. Easy Street is no stroll in the park, but somehow Chaplin is able to leave us on a note of hope, even while making it clear (with one last gag involving the reformed bully and his wife) that he's fully aware of the wishful thinking involved. Still, it's a beautiful ending to a great movie, one that proclaims and upholds Chaplin's reputation as firmly as any short film he ever made.


18 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Is it just me.... JoshBob
Shown at Bradford Film Festival at National Media Museum alyson-rhodes
Discuss Easy Street (1917) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?