In The Kid, his first feature as director, the Tramp (Chaplin) finds and takes in a baby abandoned by its mother, raising the boy as his own son. The two form a partnership whereby the kid (Jackie Coogan, who became the first major child star as a result of this role) smashes windows his adoptive father is then paid to repair. When the boy falls ill, authorities discover that the two are not related, and they are forcefully separated. However, related or not, the father is determined to be reunited with his son. A film that was filled with personal resonance for Chaplin, of his own childhood and the recent tragic death of his first child, The Kid remains an utterly disarming mixture of comedy and drama.
This film screens as part of the Charlie Chaplin: A Smile And A Tear season, screening February 12th to 27th.
Age recommendation: 8+