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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 21, 1998
In this classic romantic comedy, Charlie stumbles upon a circus in which he finds employment through some silly bits of mishaps. Upon his inept and clumsy employment, he finds himself the saving grace of the floundering circus by accidentally becoming the hit comedy act and main audience draw. Meanwhile, he falls desperately in love with the beautiful equestrian who also happens to be the daughter of the abusive circus owner and ring master. Charlie has dreams of a wonderful life with her away from the circus until the reality of her heart's true desire is learned. A heart-wrenching story which displays the joy, the horror, and the grace of love.
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on March 22, 2004
Of all the films I've watched of Charlie Chaplin this has got to be my most favorite comedy of his and definitly needs to be saved from obscurity . It's both a drama and comedy and has lots of pantomime and slapstick . The story goes like this , Charlie goes to the circus and is mistaken for a pickpocket . He tries to escape from the police by entering a mirror maze ( I wonder how Charlie pulled off this camera trick ) and pretends to be one of those mechanical dummies . He then gets chased into the big top where he causes a roar of laughter to the audience that has been bored out by the ringmasters so called entertainment . The ringmaster soon realizes that this tramp character is what he needs for his circus so he gives him a trial and lets Charlie show off his funny`material which to the ringmaster is not funny. The only time the tramp is funny is when he tries not to be so the ring master hires Charlie to be a property with pretty good results . The tramp falls in love with the ringmaster's abused step daughter . Merna( the ringmaster's stepdaughter ) soon finds love with the circus's new attraction Rex the " King of Air " a.k.a. tightrope walker . The movie is very funny and is filled with gags such as Charlie on the tightrope being harrassed by monkeys pulling his pants down , biting his nose , and sticking their tails in his mouth . What's really interesting about this scene is that when you look at the expression on his face it's pretty sad , its charlie struggling through his perosonal life . He can't escape from all this trouble just like he could'nt escape from his divorce with his second wife Lita grey , his money problems , his mother's death and problems with stage fires all during the making of this film . The last scene in the film just wants to make you burst into tears because the tramp finds out that the girl is in love with the tightrope walker so he gets them married because he knows that he could never have a chance with Merna and the circus leaves leaving Charlie behind. Truly one of Chaplin's most hard to make films that should be more mentioned about . The short comedy included in this video sucks though .
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on March 9, 2004
often overlooked between The Gold Rush and City Lights, which bracketed it in Charlie's catalog. I'd neber seen this one until now, but I think it's probably the strongest of Charlie's straightforward slapstick films. He really didn't try this sort of thing in the later part of his career, so it's cool to get a chance to see him do it with the technical progress that had been made since his early days at keystone.
And Merna Kennedy may very well be the most beautiful woman to ever live. It's a shame she died so young.
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