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The Kid (1921)

Not Rated  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Family  |  6 February 1921 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.4/10 from 59,476 users  
Reviews: 111 user | 68 critic

The Tramp cares for an abandoned child, but events put that relationship in jeopardy.


(as Charlie Chaplin)


(as Charlie Chaplin)
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Top Rated Movies #95 | 1 win. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Carl Miller ...
The Woman
The Child (as Jack Coogan)
A Tramp (as Charlie Chaplin)


The opening title reads: "A comedy with a smile--and perhaps a tear". As she leaves the charity hospital and passes a church wedding, Edna deposits her new baby with a pleading note in a limousine and goes off to commit suicide. The limo is stolen by thieves who dump the baby by a garbage can. Charlie the Tramp finds the baby and makes a home for him. Five years later Edna has become an opera star but does charity work for slum youngsters in hope of finding her boy. A doctor called by Edna discovers the note with the truth about the Kid and reports it to the authorities who come to take him away from Charlie. Before he arrives at the Orphan Asylum Charlie steals him back and takes him to a flophouse. The proprietor reads of a reward for the Kid and takes him to Edna. Charlie is later awakened by a kind policeman who reunites him with the Kid at Edna's mansion. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

baby | boy | orphan | 1920s | 1910s | See All (35) »


6 reels of Joy. See more »


Comedy | Drama | Family


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

6 February 1921 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El chico  »

Box Office


$250,000 (estimated)


$2,500,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (1971 edit with new Chaplin score)

Sound Mix:

(new music score) (1971)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The shooting ratio (the amount of material shot:what appears in the final film) is 53:1, far higher than any other Charles Chaplin film. See more »


When the Tramp sits on the curb, he sets down his cane, which then changes position in the next cut. See more »


Referenced in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #20.97 (2012) See more »

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User Reviews

One Of The Most Memorable Silent Films Ever
24 November 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Wow, is this a memorable film! It is one of the most famous silent movies ever and justifiably so. That fact that it still entertains over 80 years after it was made is quite a testimony.

It is a wonderful blend of humor and drama. Charlie Chaplin's unique humor, combined with an involving storyline and strong sentimentality make this one to remember. Chaplin's humor ranges from pure slapstick to some clever stunts.

The "kid" - Jackie Coogan - is just as memorable, maybe even more so. He is unbelievably cute, especially in those old-time clothes he wore. Watching the expressions on his face, even as a baby, are fascinating and facial expressions certainly were a trademark of the silent era.

So, between Chaplin and Coogan, and a very involving story that can break your heart one minute and have you laughing out loud the next, it's an amazing piece of work. This is a very fast-paced story which lasts less than an hour.

The special edition two-disc DVD has a restored version of the print so the picture is very clear, actually astounding for its age. Excellent entertainment.

44 of 50 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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