27 user 12 critic

Pay Day (1922)

TV-G | | Comedy, Short | 2 April 1922 (USA)
After a difficult day at work, a bricklayer tries to enjoy his pay day without his wife knowing.


Charles Chaplin (as Charlie Chaplin)


Charles Chaplin (as Charlie Chaplin)




Complete credited cast:
Charles Chaplin ... Laborer (as Charlie Chaplin)
Phyllis Allen Phyllis Allen ... His Wife
Mack Swain ... Foreman
Edna Purviance ... Foreman's Daughter
Syd Chaplin ... Charlie's Friend and Lunch Cart Owner
Albert Austin ... Workman
John Rand ... Workman
Loyal Underwood ... Workman
Henry Bergman Henry Bergman ... Drinking Companion
Al Ernest Garcia ... Drinking Companion and Policeman


Charlie is an expert bricklayer. He has lots of fun and work and enjoys himself greatly while at the saloon. As he leaves work his wife takes the pay he has hidden in his hat. But he steals her purse so he can go out for the evening. He has a terrible time getting home on a very rainy night. When he does so he finds his wife waiting for him with a rolling pin. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


See Charlie juggle bricks and dodge the foreman---and hide his pay check from his wife. (Print Ad-Lake Benton News, ((Lake Benton, Minn.)) 2 May 1924)


Comedy | Short


TV-G | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Reportedly Charles Chaplin's favorite among his own short films. See more »


Charlie's first "shovelful" of dirt disappears in a subsequent shot. See more »


Laborer: Which way to Christen-zen-zen Street?
[a man points one way, he goes the other]
See more »


Featured in Historia del cine: Epoca muda (1983) See more »

User Reviews

Generally funny and enjoyable short with Chaplin on inventive good form
4 May 2008 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

Arriving late for work on the construction site is not a good idea when you're trying to earn enough money to keep some back from your domineering wife. That is just the situation our hero finds himself in though, but it doesn't stop him enough a drink or five from night through to early morning.

An afternoon of Charlie Chaplin shorts and features was mine recently as I tried to catch up on some things I had not seen before. Pay Day was one of those short films and while being roundly good, it is still an affair of two halves. The first half has some great bits in it, the reverse filmed bricklaying sequence being my favourite but the service elevator stuff is as good but in different ways. The second half is nearly as good but is too dominated by the device of drunkenness for my liking. That said it does still have some laugh-out-loud moments in there but for sure the first half is the strongest.

Chaplin delivers with strength as usual. Whether it be his work with his face or his ability to work in reverse on the brick sequence, he is quite brilliant and you can see here some of the reasons that his name is mentioned when discussing genius. The support cast is not as important here as in some other films, as Chaplin tends to play off things more than people here. Still, regulars Swain, Perviance, Bergman and others are all here.

Overall then a generally funny and enjoyable short film with Chaplin on inventive good form even if the second half is not quite up to the level of the first.

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Official Sites:

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None | English

Release Date:

2 April 1922 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Дан исплате See more »


Box Office

Gross USA:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


(TCM print)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System) (re-issue)| Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

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