Chaplin Diary, Part 3: Middle Essanay

My last diary entry covered Charlie Chaplin's first five short films at Essanay; the beginning of his second year as a filmmaker. But with his sixth Essanay comedy, The Tramp, Chaplin made a major step towards maturity. Before this seminal two-reeler, Charlie was a funny little man with ill-fitting clothes and a brush mustache. In … Continue reading Chaplin Diary, Part 3: Middle Essanay

Chaplin Diary, Part 2: Early Essanay

According to the Internet Movie Database, Charlie Chaplin directed 71 movies. By my count, he did 64. The remaining seven include recuts of previous films, uncompleted works, "features" that were actually compilations of shorts, promotional films, and what we now call public service announcements. Remove those, and you have 64 original movies. After his year … Continue reading Chaplin Diary, Part 2: Early Essanay

Lady Bird: Coming of Age in Sacramento

A- Coming-of-age comedy Written and directed by Greta Gerwig If you've followed Greta Gerwig's career as an actress and a screenwriter, you wouldn't be surprised at the quality of her solo directorial debut. In Lady Bird, she examines a very explosive mother/daughter relationship, explores the social dynamics of a Catholic high school, and manages to … Continue reading Lady Bird: Coming of Age in Sacramento