The Circus


Action / Comedy / Romance

Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 100%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 94%
IMDb Rating 8.1 10 20938


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October 22, 2011 at 04:11 AM


Charles Chaplin as A Tramp
501.09 MB
23.976 fps
1hr 12 min
P/S 2 / 20

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Ian 6 / 10

Good But Not Spectacular

(Flash Review)

In this comedic story, Chaplin plays an unemployed wanderer who ends up as the fluke hit of a traveling circus. He is accidentally thrust into a live performance and messes up the show yet invigorates the crowd with laughter as he get chased around by the performers. The ringleader catches on to his ability to elicit laughter and offers him a job, which he is happy to take with the side benefit of working a romantic angle of a cute female performer. Will he be able to keep the audience's belly's giggling with laughter and will he strike gold with the lady? From what I had heard of this film, I expected bigger laughter. Most of it was cute and charming, clever and of course the climax was stellar but I have been much more impressed by Buster Keaton films. Chaplin was good at drawing out subtle character feelings and emotions for a physical comedy so kudos on that angle. Certainly worth a watch.

Reviewed by huntermcintyre 8 / 10

Circus Review

I thought that Charlie Chaplin's the circus was an above average film. For a film released in 1928 it was directed excellently. The cuts and starts of the film were timed perfectly and it seemed that the film seemed to flow seamlessly due to it. The writing was also done very well everything in the film seemed to make sense and keep me at least interested for a large majority of the film. The acting was excellent. Even though it is a silent film I knew what the characters meant the whole time. Overall I think that the film was very well done especially considering the time period.

Reviewed by JohnHowardReid 8 / 10

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Casting director for circus performers: Allan Garcia. Continuity girl: Della Steele. Laboratory supervisor: William E. Hinkley. Music for sound version composed by Charles Chaplin. Producer: Charles Chaplin.

Copyright 6 January 1928 by Charles Chaplin. Released through United Artists.

New York opening at the Mark Strand, 7 January 1928. 7 reels. 6,700 feet. DVD available from Warner Home Video.

SYNOPSIS: Charlie inadvertently joins a circus.

NOTES: The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences gave a Special Award to Charles Chaplin, "for versatility and genius in writing, acting, directing and producing The Circus." Chaplin was also nominated for Best Actor (the award was won by Emil Jannings) and Best Comedy Director (Lewis Milestone received the award). The movie itself was voted number six in The Film Daily's 1928 poll of American film critics.

COMMENT: Although, disappointingly, it is not one of his funniest films (some of the jokes, especially the horse pill and some similar experiments, now seem extremely old, tired and totally worn out), "The Circus" still carries more than enough Chaplin magic to make it extremely watchable.

It's absolutely impossible to go past Chaplin for his mastery of comic timing, and here in "The Circus", such inspired timing is as deft as ever. Fortunately, Chaplin's brilliantly neat footwork is also just as fancy, and remarkable as ever. And as for performance wise, Chaplin has it all over the rest of the cast.

In my opinion, whilst I found some of the other players to be totally forgettable, Chaplin's own performance registered strongly enough that I still remember it, even though it is at least twenty years since I saw the movie in a theater. My memory is that Chaplin did actually win an acting nomination for his performance in this movie. He fully deserved it!

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