The Kid – 1921

Went in a totally different direction than yesterday’s movie with this one.  Turner Classic Movies was showing this tonight so I decided to finally watch it.  About halfway through I started recording it on the dvr so I could have it for a while…that’s how much I liked this movie.

Chaplin had me with the opening card:

“A picture with a smile, and perhaps a tear…

and kept me for the remainder of the film. HIS vulnerability was just heartbreaking.  It’s amazing to me that in the short amount of time used, Chaplin was able to convincingly convey his transformation from selfish “tramp” who was happy only having to deal with his own needs to adoring father.  I had read about the classic chase scene where he runs across the rooftops, chasing the wagon that has his son inside, but hearing about it and seeing it evoke extremely different emotions.  Chaplin just nails this character from the get-go and made me fall in love immediately.  Casting Jackie Coogan was absolutely brilliant.  The two of them compliment each other so well in this film that you forget Coogan was an abandoned child Chaplin picked up and not actually his own son.

Yes, I cried.  At the heartbreaking scene when the rip John (The Kid) out of Chaplin’s home and away from him with Coogan convincingly crying and screaming the entire time.  And I cried at the end, when the two are reunited.  I could have lived without the dream sequence with the angels but sitting through a couple of minutes of that is a small burden to bear for the payoff that follows.

I just adored this film while watching it and have already watched it again.  This might be my favorite movie so far that I’ve watched during this experiment.

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