You are browsing the archive for silent comedy.

Kid Auto Races at Venice (1914)

- April 3, 2012 in charlie chaplin, Films, Films: 1910s, Films: Comedy, Films: Short, keystone, kid auto races, non-article, silent comedy, silent short, tramp

< div align="center">

This Keystone comedy Kid Auto Races at Venice, released on 7 February 1914, was only Charlie Chaplin’s second ever appearance on film and the screen debut of his famous Tramp character. Although it was the first film released involving the Tramp, Chaplin had actually devised the outfit for the film Mabel’s Strange Predicament produced a few days earlier but released a couple days after Kid Auto Races at Venice, on 9 February 1914. Mack Sennett had requested that Chaplin “get into a comedy make-up”. As Chaplin recalled in his autobiography:

I had no idea what makeup to put on. I did not like my get-up as the press reporter [in Making a Living]. However on the way to the wardrobe I thought I would dress in baggy pants, big shoes, a cane and a derby hat. I wanted everything to be a contradiction: the pants baggy, the coat tight, the hat small and the shoes large. I was undecided whether to look old or young, but remembering Sennett had expected me to be a much older man, I added a small moustache, which I reasoned, would add age without hiding my expression. I had no idea of the character. But the moment I was dressed, the clothes and the makeup made me feel the person he was. I began to know him, and by the time I walked on stage he was fully born.

In The Kid Auto Races at Venice Chaplin takes the Tramp to the races where he annoys a director, who is trying to film there, by continuously trying to sneak into shot.

Download from Internet Archive

Note this film is in the public domain in the US, but may not be in other jurisdictions. Please check its status in your jurisdiction before re-using.

< div class="cgview light"> < ul id="cg-ul">
  • <img src=" alt="Gertie The Dinosaur (1914)" title="Gertie The Dinosaur (1914)"/>

  • Sign up to the PDR to get new articles delivered free to your inbox and to receive updates about exciting new developments relating to the project. Simply add your details to the form below and click the link you receive via email to confirm your subscription!

    flattr this!

    Never Weaken (1921)

    - September 4, 2011 in Films, harold lloyd, non-article, silent comedy, silent short, watch online

    American comedian Harold Lloyd’s last short film before he moved permanently into feature-length production. It is one of his trademark “thrill” comedies, featuring him dangling from a tall building, `a technique which he was to perfect two years later in his classic Saftey First! from 1923. The plot revolves around his attempts to commit suicide after he finds out the woman he loves will marry another. Available also with an added soundtrack here.

    Download from Internet Archive

    Note this film is in the public domain in the US, but may not be in other jurisdictions. Please check its status in your jurisdiction before re-using.

    Princess Nicotine (1909) 6min

    Gertie the Dinosaur (1914) 12min

    Last of the Mohicans (1920) 1hr11min

    Meet John Doe (1941) 2hr3min

    The Unappreciated Joke (1903) 1min

    Frankenstein (1910) 13min

    The General (1926) 1hr19min

    Plan 9 from Outer Space (1959) 1hr19mins

    The Execution of Mary, Queen of Scots (1895) 21sec

    The Great Train Robbery (1903) 10min

    Wolf Blood (1925) 1hr7min

    Reefer Madness (1938) 1hr8min

    The Kiss (1896) 25secs

    Experiments in the Revival of Organisms (1940) 20min

    Battleship Potemkin (1925) 1hr13min

    The Snows of Kilimanjaro (1952) 1hr57min

    Trapeze Disrobing Act (1901) 2min

    Are You Popular (1947) 10min

    The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog (1927) 1hr11min

    Scarlet Street (1945) 1hr43min

    Annie Oakley Fires Her Gun (1894) 20secs

    The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1910) 13min

    Faust (1926) 1hr55min

    The Last Man on Earth (1964) 1hr27min

    Operation Cue (1955) 52sec

    Never Weaken (1921) 28min

    Intolerance (1916) 2hr57min

    Quicksand (1950) 1hr18min