MOVIEmeter
Top 5000
Up 861 this week

City Lights (1931)

Passed  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Romance  |  7 March 1931 (USA)
8.6
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.6/10 from 90,940 users  
Reviews: 201 user | 133 critic

With the aid of a wealthy erratic tippler, a dewy-eyed tramp who has fallen in love with a sightless flower girl accumulates money to be able to help her medically.

Director:

Writer:

0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

ON DISC

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 25 titles
created 04 Jan 2011
 
a list of 25 titles
created 29 Apr 2013
 
a list of 27 titles
created 11 Jan 2014
 
a list of 27 titles
created 07 Mar 2014
 
1.1
a list of 25 titles
created 30 Apr 2014
 

Related Items

Search for "City Lights" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: City Lights (1931)

City Lights (1931) on IMDb 8.6/10

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

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of City Lights.

User Polls

Top 250 #35 | 3 wins. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Modern Times (1936)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

The Tramp struggles to live in modern industrial society with the help of a young homeless woman.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Paulette Goddard, Henry Bergman
The Gold Rush (1925)
Adventure | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

A prospector goes to the Klondike in search of gold and finds it and more.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Mack Swain, Tom Murray
Comedy | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Dictator Adenoid Hynkel tries to expand his empire while a poor Jewish barber tries to avoid persecution from Hynkel's regime.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Paulette Goddard, Jack Oakie
The Circus (1928)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

The Tramp finds work and the girl of his dreams at a circus.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Merna Kennedy, Al Ernest Garcia
Seven Samurai (1954)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  

A poor village under attack by bandits recruits seven unemployed samurai to help them defend themselves.

Director: Akira Kurosawa
Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Keiko Tsushima
Rear Window (1954)
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

A wheelchair bound photographer spies on his neighbours from his apartment window and becomes convinced one of them has committed murder.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: James Stewart, Grace Kelly, Wendell Corey
Sunset Blvd. (1950)
Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A hack screenwriter writes a screenplay for a former silent-film star who has faded into Hollywood obscurity.

Director: Billy Wilder
Stars: William Holden, Gloria Swanson, Erich von Stroheim
Casablanca (1942)
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

Set in unoccupied Africa during the early days of World War II: An American expatriate meets a former lover, with unforeseen complications.

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, Paul Henreid
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

Epic story of a mysterious stranger with a harmonica who joins forces with a notorious desperado to protect a beautiful widow from a ruthless assassin working for the railroad.

Director: Sergio Leone
Stars: Henry Fonda, Charles Bronson, Claudia Cardinale
M (1931)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

When the police in a German city are unable to catch a child-murderer, other criminals join in the manhunt.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Peter Lorre, Ellen Widmann, Inge Landgut
Psycho (1960)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

A Phoenix secretary steals $40,000 from her employer's client, goes on the run and checks into a remote motel run by a young man under the domination of his mother.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

When soldiers in World War I refuse to continue with an impossible attack, their superior officers decide to make an example of them.

Director: Stanley Kubrick
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Ralph Meeker, Adolphe Menjou
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Virginia Cherrill ...
Florence Lee ...
Harry Myers ...
Al Ernest Garcia ...
The Millionaire's Butler (as Allan Garcia)
Hank Mann ...
A Prizefighter
...
A Tramp (as Charlie Chaplin)
Edit

Storyline

A tramp falls in love with a beautiful blind girl. Her family is in financial trouble. The tramp's on-and-off friendship with a wealthy man allows him to be the girl's benefactor and suitor. Written by John J. Magee <magee@helix.mgh.harvard.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 March 1931 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

City Lights: A Comedy Romance in Pantomime  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| (musical score)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Charles Chaplin began shooting the film in 1928. Convinced that sound was just a passing fad, he decided to stick with his trademark pantomimic style. However, halfway through production he realized that the talkies weren't going away, so he shut down the film and tried to figure out how to incorporate sound. He was further hindered by the Wall Street Crash. See more »

Goofs

When the tramp accidentally swallows the whistle, his real eyebrows are visible beneath his fake ones. This was done intentionally to give him a lopsided, intoxicated facial expression. See more »

Quotes

The Tramp: You can see now?
A Blind Girl: Yes, I can see now.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Troldspejlet: Episode #19.2 (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Flower Girl Theme
(1931) (uncredited)
Music by José Padilla
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Lady and the Tramp, before animation and at the start of talkies- one of the most wonderful films ever conceived and executed
12 September 2004 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

If there is one Charlie Chaplin film to recommend, as others have pointed to in the past, City Lights is the one. Though Chaplin played his Tramp character superbly in other movies, like Modern Times and The Gold Rush, City Lights displays the Tramp at his funniest, his bravest, his most romantic, and his most sympathetic. It's tough for filmmakers in recent days to bring the audience so close emotionally with the characters, but it's pulled off.

The film centers on three characters- the Tramp, the quintessential, funny homeless man who blends into the crowd, but gets caught in predicaments. He helps a drunken businessman (Myers, a fine performance in his own right) from suicide, and becomes his on and off again friend (that is, when it suits him and doesn't notice his 'friend's' state). The other person in the Tramp's life is the Blind Flower Girl (Virginia Cherrill, one of the most absorbing, beautiful, and key female performances in silent film), who are quite fond of each other despite the lack of total perception. The emotional centerpiece comes in obtaining rent and eye surgery money, which leads to a (how else can I put it) magical boxing match where it's basically a 180 from the brutality and viscerality of a match in say Raging Bull.

Though there is no dialog, the film achieves a timelessness- it's essentially a tale of two loners who find each other, lose each other, and find each other again (the last scene, widely discussed by critics for decades, is moving if not tear-inducing). And it's never, ever boring- once you get along with the Tramp, you find the little things about him, the reaction shots, the little things he does after the usual big gag (look to the ballroom scene for examples of this, or when he gets a bottle of wine poured down his pants without the other guy noticing). Truth be told, if this film makes you indifferent, never watch Chaplin again. But if you give yourself to the film, you may find it's one of the most charming from the era, or perhaps any era.


80 of 93 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Is the ending the best in film history? laffalott1
Your Top ten favorite silent films SakowskyBrothers
Don't know where to ask this help with identifying silent film. puzzle_queen
What is the best joke in the movie? nirvanasaneurysm
Why no Oscar nominations? laffalott1
The First Chaplin Movie I've Ever Seen... imaveggie
Discuss City Lights (1931) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?