Once dubbed “the most famous man in the world,” Charlie Chaplin has long been recognized as one of the preeminent icons of both comedy and cinema. From 1914 until 1967, Chaplin wrote, directed, produced and starred in more than 80 films, quickly advancing from basic slapstick to a unique comic style: immaculately constructed, deeply human, and always hilarious. “Modern Times” is one of his most acclaimed works that can make a child (or the child in us) laugh with abandon while truly empathizing with his iconic character, the down-and-out Tramp.
Because of its cultural significance, “Modern Times” was selected by the Library of Congress in 1989 for preservation in the National Film Registry.
One of the most famous shots in silent comedy: a man in a straw hat and horn-rimmed glasses, hanging from the minute hand of a clock 12 stories above the street – and yet not many people have seen “Safety Last!” The comic genius of silent star Harold Lloyd is eternal. Chaplin is the innocent Tramp, Keaton the stoic outsider, but Lloyd—the modern guy striving for success—is us. With its torrent of perfectly executed gags and astonishing stunts, “Safety Last!” is the perfect introduction to this luminary of the silent era.
This wordless, evocative, uniquely original animated film follows Cuca, a young Brazilian boy who ventures from his simple countryside home into a neon-infused, carnivalesque metropolis in search of his father. It’s an audio/visual feast. When the credits roll there is a good chance your interpretation of the film might vary from others—but what a ride!
Open your senses to a refreshingly original, uniquely visual animated film from Brazilian artist Alê Abreu. Employing everything from mosaics to watercolors, the film overflows with delight, exploding with vibrant color and samba/hip hop rhythms. The story focuses on Cuca, a young child growing up in the Brazilian countryside with his family. One day, his father leaves to work in the city, leading Cuca to set out for the metropolis, determined to reunite his family. The animation starts simply, but as Cuca ventures further into the world, the visual style takes on a greater complexity, eventually creating a neon-infused cityscape with a variety of strange characters never seen before. The seemingly simple story reveals a number of conflicts between country and city, poverty and wealth, the handmade and machinery in such a way that audiences of all ages will experience the same narrative on different levels. Abreu’s film is captivating, and will keep your attention rapt for its full running time with hardly a line of dialogue all the way to its surprising and emotional finale.