8.5/10
214,740
310 user 116 critic

Modern Times (1936)

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

Director:

Charles Chaplin (as Charlie Chaplin)

Writer:

Charles Chaplin (as Charlie Chaplin)
Reviews
Popularity
3,784 ( 86)
Top Rated Movies #39 | 4 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Charles Chaplin ... A Factory Worker (as Charlie Chaplin)
Paulette Goddard ... A Gamin
Henry Bergman Henry Bergman ... Cafe Proprietor
Tiny Sandford ... Big Bill (as Stanley Sandford)
Chester Conklin ... Mechanic
Hank Mann ... Burglar
Stanley Blystone ... Gamin's Father
Al Ernest Garcia ... President of the Electro Steel Corp. (as Allan Garcia)
Richard Alexander ... Prison Cellmate (as Dick Alexander)
Cecil Reynolds Cecil Reynolds ... Minister
Mira McKinney ... Minister's Wife (as Myra McKinney)
Murdock MacQuarrie ... J. Widdecombe Billows (as Murdoch McQuarrie)
Wilfred Lucas ... Juvenile Officer
Edward LeSaint ... Sheriff Couler (as Ed Le Sainte)
Fred Malatesta ... Cafe Head Waiter
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Storyline

Chaplin's last 'silent' film, filled with sound effects, was made when everyone else was making talkies. Charlie turns against modern society, the machine age, (The use of sound in films ?) and progress. Firstly we see him frantically trying to keep up with a production line, tightening bolts. He is selected for an experiment with an automatic feeding machine, but various mishaps leads his boss to believe he has gone mad, and Charlie is sent to a mental hospital - When he gets out, he is mistaken for a communist while waving a red flag, sent to jail, foils a jailbreak, and is let out again. We follow Charlie through many more escapades before the film is out. Written by Colin Tinto <cst@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He stands alone as the greatest entertainer of modern times! No one on earth can make you laugh as heartily or touch your heart as deeply...the whole world laughs, cries and thrills to his priceless genius! See more »


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Supposedly was to be Charles Chaplin's first full sound film, but instead, sound is used in a unique way: we hear spoken voices only when they come from mechanical devices, a symbol of the film's theme of technology and dehumanization. Specifically, voices are heard from:
  • The videophones used by the factory president
  • The phonographic Mechanical Salesman
  • The radio in the prison warden's office
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Goofs

(at around 36 mins) When Charles Chaplin accidentally launches the ship, his position in relation to the moving ship changes between shots - he launches the ship from the side but when is looks at it descending into the water he is directly in front of the ship. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
President of the Electro Steel Corp.: Section 5, speed her up, 401.
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Alternate Versions

The opening credits on the 2003 DVD release have been digitally changed to insert a new copyright notice. The 2003 DVD release includes, in its supplementary material, a deleted scene in which Chaplin unsuccessfully tries to cross a busy street. See more »


Soundtracks

Je Cherche après Titine
(1917) (uncredited)
Music by Léo Daniderff
Lyrics by Marcel Bertal and Louis Maubon
Performed by Charles Chaplin
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User Reviews

 
Solid comedy with great story and drama
28 June 2015 | by 851222See all my reviews

Greetings from Lithuania.

"Modern Times" (1936) is my first movie which i saw that features Charles Chaplin. Saw it first time in 2015, but nevertheless it's a great movie. Comedy here is truly funny, and it's not just a comedy. It tells a story, with some underlying themes that are still kinda topical till this day – technology is changing, evolving, and if you are not keeping pace with it, you will have some hard times like our hero of this movie.

Acting here is very solid, actually i was surprised of how well acted this movie was – no one overreacted. Story itself is interesting and movie is very well paced – at running time 1 h 27 min it almost never drags and is entertaining from start till finish.

Overall, "Modern Times" is a black and white silent movie (there are some sounds actually) which safely can be viewed for the first time even in 2015 – 79 years after it's original release. It has some truly genuine comedic situations, it tells good story and pacing of picture is very solid. Maybe it is not possible to review this movie correctly now because it's very old, but great movies are great movies – they can be viewed no matter what.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Instagram | Official Site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 February 1936 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Masses See more »

Filming Locations:

Santa Clarita, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$35,809, 28 December 2003

Gross USA:

$163,577

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$457,688
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording Sound System)| Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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