1915: 2 movies

(last updated 29 August 2012)

Burlesque on 'Carmen'
Written by, directed by, and starring Charles Chaplin
Co-starring Edna Purviance and John Rand
Cinematography by Roland Totheroh
Produced by Essanay Manufacturing Co.

   Simultaneously makes a mockery of contemporary movies and elevates the medium. The last scene where the characters rise up and show that the whole thing was an act is priceless post-modernism. Amazingly crisp photography and charmingly detailed set decoration. The performances by leads Chaplin and Purviance, as well as all the smaller roles, are inspired. After this, who can watch a straight drama and not wish it would have taken itself less seriously?

In the Park
Written, directed, edited, and starring Charles Chaplin
Co-starring Edna Purviance
Produced for Essanay Films

   There has been no prettier actress than Edna Purviance, and there has been no leading man as unpredictable, wild, and loveable as Charlie Chaplin. His tramp pulls a dozen or so different hilarious stunts in this 14-minute romp that ends as pointlessly as it starts. There is something a little wrong about each of the tramp's activities, but they're each also understandable. Complete disrespect for police, property, relationships, and other manners are all in abundance here as Chaplin miraculously shows us that the fool in a foolish place is actually a wise soul. Filmed gloriously in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park, the movie also employs an intriguing technique of showing three different shots to convey one continuous area.

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