8.5/10
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239 user 132 critic

Modern Times (1936)

The Tramp struggles to live in modern industrial society with the help of a young homeless woman.

Director:

(as Charlie Chaplin)

Writer:

(as Charlie Chaplin)
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Popularity
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Top Rated Movies #38 | 4 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... A Factory Worker (as Charlie Chaplin)
... A Gamin
Henry Bergman ... Cafe Proprietor
Tiny Sandford ... Big Bill (as Stanley Sandford)
... Mechanic
... Burglar
... Gamin's Father
... President of the Electro Steel Corp. (as Allan Garcia)
... Prison Cellmate (as Dick Alexander)
Cecil Reynolds ... Minister
... Minister's Wife (as Myra McKinney)
... J. Widdecombe Billows (as Murdoch McQuarrie)
... Juvenile Officer
... Sheriff Couler (as Ed Le Sainte)
... Cafe Head Waiter
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Storyline

Chaplin's last 'silent' film, filled with sound effects, was made when everyone else was making talkies. Charlie turns against modern society, the machine age, (The use of sound in films ?) and progress. Firstly we see him frantically trying to keep up with a production line, tightening bolts. He is selected for an experiment with an automatic feeding machine, but various mishaps leads his boss to believe he has gone mad, and Charlie is sent to a mental hospital - When he gets out, he is mistaken for a communist while waving a red flag, sent to jail, foils a jailbreak, and is let out again. We follow Charlie through many more escapades before the film is out. Written by Colin Tinto <cst@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

You'll never laugh as long and as loud again as long as you live! The laughs come so fast and so furious you'll wish it would end before you collapse! See more »


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 February 1936 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Masses  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,507, 9 January 2004, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$163,245, 24 October 2004
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was always intended to be Charles Chaplin's first talkie. He even went as far as writing a dialogue script and experimenting with sound. However, because Chaplin intended the film to feature his Little Tramp character, sound seemed inappropriate. Consequently, the film was made using silent techniques, shot at 18 frames per second and then projected at 24 frames per second, which gave the slapstick sequences a more frenetic feel. See more »

Goofs

(at around 52 mins) After Charlie has been doused with rum, his suit is soaked. When Big Bill recognizes him directly afterwards, his suit is mostly dry. See more »

Quotes

President of the Electro Steel Corp.: [first lines]
President of the Electro Steel Corp.: Section 5, speed her up, 401.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jeopardy!: Episode #33.16 (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

The Prisoner's Song
(1924) (uncredited)
Written by Guy Massey
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

See That Little Man Over There? Remember When No One Was Better?
30 April 2004 | by See all my reviews

Charles Chaplin seemingly had been pushed out of the movie business by the early-1930s due to the advent of sound (a medium that just never seemed right with him). Chaplin, probably the best film-maker/performer of the 20th Century, did not despair though. He fought back with heart and emotion and by 1936 "Modern Times" was a major box office and critical success. It is a movie that quietly showed a man suffering through a world of change. As a factory worker in the film, Chaplin tries to cope with the industrial revolution and tries to make it through a quickly changing U.S. economy. He finds love with vagrant Paulette Goddard (who ended up marrying Chaplin in real life) and the two come together and lean on one another in a world of uncertainty and change. "Modern Times" is one of those films that will put a smile on your face, but it could make you weep just as easily. Chaplin's world was changing (and not necessarily for the better from his point of view) and he wanted to express the variations in his old way of doing things and the new way everyone else had accepted. Goddard is also probably the best actress to match Chaplin's charm in one of his pictures. Their love for one another (even though the marriage lasted a relatively short amount of time in real life) just seems to shine on the silver screen and they have a chemistry that is sweet and heart-warming. Beautifully made, wonderfully written, perfectly performed, smart, insightful and always brilliant, "Modern Times" is another film from Chaplin that will brand itself on the souls of all true lovers of the cinema. 5 stars out of 5.


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