December 2016, arsenal cinema

Classics Not Just for Children

THE CIRCUS, 1928

THE CIRCUS (Charles Chaplin, USA 1928, 4.,18. & 25.12.). Nothing less than the ring of a booked-out circus becomes the place of refuge for the Tramp (Chaplin), who is being pursued by the police as an alleged pickpocket, whereupon he unexpectedly becomes the star of the show and is hired by the circus director. Yet the rehearsals for the new number the next day – "Go ahead and be funny!" – end in disaster. The Tramp is demoted to a ringside assistant behind the scenes, yet also has ample opportunity to enthuse the circus audiences and thus also the cinema audience in this function too. A fast-paced, comical cascade of adventures in lion and tiger cages, on the tightrope, with worm-eaten apples and tough shaving foam. Raise the curtain! (mg)