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Criterion Collection: The Kid | Blu-ray Review

Outfitted with a new score and title sequence, reedited sans several scenes involving the woman, and rereleased in 1972, Charlie Chaplin’s first feature length film The Kid has finally made its way to home video in HD thanks to the Cineteca di Bologna’s gloriously meticulous restoration and 4k digital transfer. Originally released back in 1921 after about a half decade of acting and eventually directing wildly popular shorts for Keystone Studios, the Essanay Film Manufacturing Company and finally the Mutual Film Corporation, the film endured a year long production amidst personal and professional crisis. It was thought that Chaplin’s signature brand of comedic slapstick, which typically ran just two reels of film, could not support the length of a six reel feature, but as is evidenced within, the film perfectly fuses Chaplin’s penchant for melodrama with his masterful vaudevillian humor to create an astonishingly emotional comedy that plumbs
See full article at IONCINEMA.com »

Fiery Red-Head Hayward Is TCM's Star of the Month

Susan Hayward. Susan Hayward movies: TCM Star of the Month Fiery redhead Susan Hayward it Turner Classic Movies' Star of the Month in Sept. 2015. The five-time Best Actress Oscar nominee – like Ida Lupino, a would-be Bette Davis that only sporadically landed roles to match the verve of her thespian prowess – was initially a minor Warner Bros. contract player who went on to become a Paramount second lead in the early '40s, a Universal leading lady in the late '40s, and a 20th Century Fox star in the early '50s. TCM will be presenting only three Susan Hayward premieres, all from her Fox era. Unfortunately, her Paramount and Universal work – e.g., Among the Living, Sis Hopkins, And Now Tomorrow, The Saxon Charm – which remains mostly unavailable (in quality prints), will remain unavailable this month. Highlights of the evening include: Adam Had Four Sons (1941), a sentimental but surprisingly
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Chaplin: a little tramp through Charlie's love affairs

Robert Downey Jr sparkles as the British comedy giant but Richard Attenborough's film feels somewhat dutiful around him

Director: Richard Attenborough

Entertainment grade: C+

History grade: B+

Charlie Chaplin was a British comedian who became one of the earliest and greatest stars of Hollywood cinema.

Childhood

The film begins with Chaplin's grim childhood in Victorian London, complete with an absentee father, a mentally ill mother (played by Geraldine Chaplin, the granddaughter of the real thing) and a stint in the workhouse. One night, when his mother sings in a music-hall show, her voice fails. Five-year-old Charlie is brought on to replace her. His precociously adorable performance brings the house down. Much though this rise-to-fame story sounds too good to be true, it is what Chaplin described in his autobiography.

Love

In adulthood, Chaplin is played by Robert Downey Jr. The film makes a big deal of the 19-year-old
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Do You Look Like the Little Tramp?

Did you know that Charlie Chaplin once failed to win a Charlie Chaplin look-alike contest? Now it’s your chance to give it a go! The Broadway musical “Chaplin” launched a look-alike Instagram contest on Oct. 15. Chaplin look-alikes can enter the contest by snapping photos of themselves and uploading them to Instagram using the hashtag #ChaplinLookAlike. Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest are also supporting the contest. The top 10 photos will be chosen Oct. 29, and their subjects will each receive two tickets to the 7:30 p.m. Halloween performance of "Chaplin." Afterward, cast members Rob McClure (Chaplin), Wayne Alan Wilcox (Sydney Chaplin), and Hayley Podschun (Mildred Harris) will choose one winner, who will receive a prize package. Want to check out the competition? Go to @ChaplinBway on Instagram, Facebook.com/ChaplinBway, Twitter.com/ChaplinBway, or Pinterest.com/ChaplinBway. So what are you waiting for? Find a bowler hat, paste on a mustache,
See full article at Backstage »

Great dynasties of the world: The Chaplins

Ian Sansom on the complex family saga of the silent movie star

A recent headline in the Birmingham Mail read: "Charlie Chaplin may have been from Birmingham." It reports on a letter found by Chaplin's daughter Victoria, after her father's death, that suggests south London's most famous son may have been a Gypsy born in Smethwick. We may never know the truth: Chaplin's birth certificate has never been discovered. But we do know that his parents worked in the music halls, and that he worked in the entertainment industry for more than 75 years, and that many of his 11 children became actors: the Chaplin family story is as complex, sad and delightful as one of his finest slapstick routines. He wrote in My Autobiography (1964): "To gauge the morals of our family by commonplace standards would be as erroneous as putting a thermometer in boiling water."

Chaplin's father, Charles Chaplin Sr,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Whatever Works: could Woody Allen's age-gap plots help prolong life? | David Cox

It's not just Woody Allen who's trumpeting an enthusiasm for May-to-December romances on the big screen. Should he, and his ilk, be berated? Or might they be helping save lives?

Once more, Woody Allen's genius has brought forth a poignant liaison between a dour but lovable greybeard and a naive but discerning tootsie. Or, to put it another way, a peevish old goat manages to cop off yet again with a complaisant babe.

If you've seen Manhattan, A Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy and Mighty Aphrodite, you won't be surprised by the scenario on which Whatever Works relies. But Woody's aren't the only movies in which an older guy gets lucky.

You may have heard tell of To Have and Have Not, The Big Sleep, An American in Paris, How to Marry a Millionaire, Gigi, High Society, Love in the Afternoon, South Pacific, Rio Bravo, The Sound of Music, Last Tango in Paris,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Birthday Suits: The Blonde and the Bookish

Celebrating cinematic birthdays for 11/29. Which celebrity would you most like to spank today?

Blond³: Diane, Anna and Cathy

1832 Louisa May Alcott wrote the oft-adapted Little Women

1895 Busby Berkeley, legendary choreographer/director. What would the early musicals have been without him?

1898 C.S. Lewis wrote the Chronicles of Narnia which were made into unfortunately generic movies. He also wrote The Screwtape Letters which I personally pray will never see the silver screen despite Hollywood's efforts. Some books just deserve the undiluted perfection of their original form. Sir Anthony Hopkins played him in the weepy bio Shadowlands (1993)

1901 Mildred Harris, silent film actress and Mrs Charlie Chaplin (for a few years)

1918 Madeleine L'Engle prolific author, most famous for Wrinkle in Time

1931 Shintarô Katsu the original blind swordsman Zatoichi

1932 Diane Ladd, if you don't love her Oscar nom'ed performances in Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, Rambling Rose and Wild at Heart, well... what's wrong with you?
See full article at FilmExperience »

O Mimi San – Sessue Hayakawa, Mildred Harris

O Mimi San (1914) Direction: Charles Miller Screenplay: Thomas H. Ince (unconfirmed) Cast: Sessue Hayakawa, Mildred Harris, Tsuru Aoki O Mimi San is historically important as Japanese actor Sessue Hayakawa’s first film. In it, Hayakawa plays a prince who goes to a retreat after an attempt on his life is made; once there he falls in love with a young woman (Mildred Harris, future wife of Charles Chaplin) but then finds himself torn between love and duty as a leader of his nation. Compounding matters, an arranged marriage (with Tsuru Aoki, Hayakawa’s own future wife) awaits him. Directed by Charles Miller and allegedly written by Thomas H. Ince (a studio head best remembered for his "mysterious" death in 1924), O Mimi San [...]
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

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