Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Obsession of the Day: Charlie Chaplin!

     I know I'm supposed to have the weekly obsession on Fridays, but I can't wait that long! My obsession today is all things Charlie Chaplin. You heard of him?

(all photos from Google :)

     Ever since my brother recommended the 1992 film Chaplin, starring (genius) Robert Downey Jr. in the title role, I've been extremely interested and mystified by one of the most influential filmmakers of all time. Watching silent films may seem like a drag, but the minute watched his movies I was hooked. You can find any of Chaplin's films on YouTube in seconds flat, and trust me, they are true art. He definitely paid great attention to his work; every detail is full of weight, emotion, and humor. My favorites so far are The Kid (1921) and Modern Times (1936). There's something about these films that is just so magical; they engage the mind, imagination, and emotions in ways that modern movies rarely do. Charlie Chaplin's work bursts with comic genius one minute, heartbreaking weight the next. He was truly gifted. 
     The aforementioned biopic Chaplin shows how his life affected his work and vice versa. The movie is a definite favorite of mine, except for a few very not so favorite, sketchy scenes that are easily skipped. Otherwise it's a haunting, touching story of a haunting, touching man. 

     My other related obsession is the song "Smile". Below is a video of Josh Groban singing it (the song + the singer = perfection :o). Charlie Chaplin wrote the melody to "Smile" (it is part of the soundtrack in Modern Times), but the lyrics weren't added until about twenty years later. If you've watched the movie Chaplin or know anything about his life, the song is poignantly perfect. 

     So that's it for my obsession! I hope it becomes yours too, because honestly, who doesn't want to be obsessed with silent films? Crazy people, that's who. :) Have a splendid day! And don't forget to SMILE! :)


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