Social Distancing: The Kid
Thursday Is 100th Anniversary Of Cinema Classic Available To Stream
Streaming services are booming. Netflix just hit 200 million subscribers, and says it just finished its biggest year of membership growth yet. I’m sure the pandemic had a lot to do with that.
I know what I’ll be streaming later. It’s one of my favorite movies, one that helped shape modern cinema, and it’s celebrating its 100th anniversary on Thursday.
Charlie Chaplin is my absolute favorite actor, and on January 21st, 1921, he premiered the first feature-length film he directed, The Kid.
He was arguably the most popular movie star in the world at the time, but he was known for pure slapstick comedy shorts.
Feature-length movies were reserved for serious stories.
But Chaplin tried to mix humor with emotion.
His iconic Tramp character finds a baby literally on the street, and raises him as his own while trying to keep authorities from separating them.
It’s kind of like The Mandalorian and Baby Yoda. A loner finds kid, reluctantly becomes his surrogate parent and learns to love him.
Chaplin wrote in his autobiography that an industry professional told him, “It won’t work. The form must be pure, either slapstick or drama; you cannot mix them, otherwise one element of your story will fail.”
But it worked. It was a hit. The movie made his co-star Jackie Coogan the biggest child star in the world.
It’s still beloved 100 years later. It has a 100 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
You can stream it on HBO Max but it’s really easy to just find on YouTube because it’s in the public domain, in case you want to celebrate a little movie history.
Now you tell me what you’re streaming. I’m looking forward to the new episode of WandaVision tomorrow.
Let me know on Facebook and Twitter.