Film analysis done for Charlie Chaplin's film, "Modern Times"

Essay by botosUniversity, Bachelor'sB+, September 2007

download word file, 5 pages 5.0

Downloaded 42 times

"While watching a silent picture each individual supplies the unspoken words according to his own understanding of the action. The dullard sees the story in his own way as does the intelligent, the wise, and so on-each one, as I said before, supplying his own understanding and everyone is pleased. But when the actor gives through the spoken word his own interpretation-then-well, there is bound to be disappointment." - Charlie Chaplin. (taken from on audiences from many foreign countries, The Tramp was a universally known character. This international recognition and success was due to Charlie Chaplin's conviction that dialogue was superfluous and constricting. Chaplin wanted the images and plot action in his films to be interpreted by the viewer without the influence of dialogue. He wanted this interpretation to be based on the body language of his characters and the images he created with the mise-en-scene, his cinematography and editing.

Chaplin did not want his audience to be restricted in their comprehension by imposing his own interpretation of his work through dialogue. Chaplin wanted silence.

In the Tramp's last great movie, Chaplin satirizes technological advances that lead to worker exploitation in the American Industry. Through a series of comedic, dialogue-lacking segments, the Tramp shows us that no "talk" is necessary to tell a story. About a decade after the first "talkie" was released, the lack of "talking" in Modern Times (1936) seems to suggest Chaplin was against technology. This was not true. Chaplin was against the exploitation of human beings, but he embraced technology. His film uses many visual "special effects" and a synchronized musical score that could not have been possible without technology. By using visual effects coupled with an accompanying musical score and wildly expressive body language, Chaplin allows the audience to think, feel, and hope with...