The Kid

The Kid ★★★★½

“The Kid” is 100 years old this month, but still has a youthful glow that would baffle the best skincare gurus. 

In 1921, there were likely plenty of skeptics out there still hemming and hawing over whether or not movies were art. “The Kid” could end that argument in 53 minutes flat. 

In under one hour, Charlie Chaplin maneuvers the narrative of “The Kid” to span an entire life, and the full spectrum of human emotion.

Films weren’t just a product (or in modern parlance, content) that dispensed happiness or gratification for a nickel. In a now-legendary sequence of “The Kid,” Chaplin takes viewers from full out sobbing over a lost child to guffawing over his antics in the next scene. 

And — none of the emotion is cheapened by this maneuvering. It only makes movies, and “The Kid,” more real, and more human. 

People laugh when they know they should cry, they keep hope when all logic says they should give in, and they cheer on a little man in a mustache they know is just a character on a screen. 

We’re complicated, and flawed, and so is our art. Which is why it’s such a miracle that it also can be perfected with precision simplicity as Chaplin managed in “The Kid.”

Part of Warm Fuzzies Winter 

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