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The Immigrant (1917)

Unrated  |   |  Short, Comedy, Drama  |  17 June 1917 (USA)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 4,474 users  
Reviews: 37 user | 14 critic

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

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(uncredited)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Immigrant (as Charlie Chaplin)
...
Eric Campbell ...
The Head Waiter
Albert Austin ...
A Diner
Henry Bergman ...
The Artist
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Storyline

Charlie is on his way to the USA. He wins in a card game, puts the money in Edna's bag (she and her sick mother have been robbed of everything). When he retrieves a little for himself he is accused of being a thief. Edna clears his name. Later, broke, Charlie finds a coin and goes into a restaurant. There he finds Edna, whose mother has died, and asks her to join him. When he reaches for the coin to pay for their meals it is missing (it has fallen through a hole in his pocket). Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Short | Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 June 1917 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Modern Columbus  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (restored)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The scene in which Charles Chaplin''s character kicks an immigration officer was cited later as "evidence" of his anti-Americanism when he was forced to leave the United States during the McCarthy "Red Scare" period in the 1950s. See more »

Goofs

When the ship arrives in New York harbor it is moving in a southward direction as indicated by the passing view of the Statue of Liberty. But a ship arriving in New York would be heading north, not south. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Chaplin (1992) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"The arrival in the Land of Liberty"
25 January 2010 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

'The Immigrant (1917)' shows Chaplin really finding his feet as a performer and a storyteller. In this 20-minute comedy, the Little Tramp arrives in New York City following a tumultuous transatlantic journey, throughout which the vessel pitched like an amusement park ride. The ever-resourceful Tramp is first seen sprawled over the side of the ship, as though indulging his sea-sickness, but then emerges to reveal himself with a flailing fish in hand. There's also a very touching scene, foreshadowing an unforgettable moment in 'City Lights (1931),' in which Chaplin surrenders his money to a pretty girl (Edna Purviance) in the most humble way he can manage – only to get accused of pickpocketing!

Following his arrival in America, the broke and lonely Tramp finds some money on the sidewalk and buys a meal, only to realise – too late – that he's lost the coin. Desperate to avoid being beaten up by the burly waiter and kitchen staff, he tries to obscure the fact that his finances are inadequate. Chaplin's timing, as ever, is exquisitely funny, and even then he had mastered the combination of comedy and sentiment that would make him one of Hollywood's most powerful and respected artists. Edna Purviance is delicate and sympathetic as a fellow immigrant, and the massive Eric Campbell is amusingly intimidating as a café head- waiter who's willing to flay a man for being ten cents short of the bill.


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