City Lights (1931)
Charlie Chaplin’s famous, loveable “Tramp” falls in love with a blind flower girl, and through several hilarious skits, he tries to earn money for her. Raved as the best Chaplin film, City Lights comes in at #11 on the AFI Top 100 Movies of All Time. I know some people are turned off by “silent films” but when movie is cute, charming and funny after 80 years, you know it is worth a view (especially being only 80 minutes)! All 3 Chaplin films on the AFI 100 list (Modern Times and The Gold Rush are also on the list) are films that had stood the test of time and even people in the 21st century will laugh and enjoy this! It’s hard to imagine that a silent film can have better plot and characters development than some movies made now, but that just shows how great a pioneer Chaplin was to comedy. As a movie lover, I am glad I decided to go down the AFI list and “make” myself watch Chaplin, because this is a movie I enjoyed that I don’t think I wouldn’t have watched on my own, and I’m a little sad about that. However, I did watch this film and now can recommend that all of you out there get your hands on a Chaplin film and enjoy one of the greats! Co-starring Virginia Cherrill, Harry Myers, and Hank Mann.
7/10 Stars – It’s sad to say that some of the skit’s I’ve “seen before” since they are obviously copies of Chaplin’s great ideas, but I still enjoy the charming nature of the Tramp and it does make me laugh out loud, and plenty comedies today can’t even do that!
The simple truth is that without Charlie Chaplin we probably wouldn’t have some of the comedic elements that seem common place in our modern comedies. He was a master of his craft and whether the year is 1931, 2013 or 2056 and audience will always be able to enjoy his films, particularly City Lights. While certainly there are some very familiar elements in City Lights, for a viewer who has seen Modern Times or The Gold Rush, that doesn’t diminish their entertainment value. The great thing about City Lights is really the plot. The story is heart-felt, emotional, fast paced and entertaining. There are many films today who can’t boast near as much as this film has to offer. It is definitely one that any movie lover should have seen in order to truly call themselves a film connoisseur.
7/10 Stars – Enchanting is the word I would use to best describe this classic!
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