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on April 18, 2017
A glorious film about a glorious career. A flawed man lived a life all of us yearn for: one that made a difference in people's lives. Brilliantly directed by Richard Attenborough, Chaplin is brought to life through a stunning performance by Robert Downey Jr. I love the fact Chaplin found his soulmate late in life, something he called "the happiest event of his life" - true love transcends time.

How it is this movie is not more well known is a mystery to me. Do yourself a favor and immerse yourself in "Chaplin".
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on April 23, 2017
I consistently defy anyone to name a better performance than Downey Jr., in this film. I don't know whether it was his personal history, or simply the lack of ability among members of the Academy to recognize timeless art, that robbed him of his Oscar.
I wrote this review especially to say that I have been in love with Dianne Lane all my life, and I do not know of a moment in any film where her beauty has been so raw, and so powerful. In later years, Lane has become a greatly respected actress, but at this time she was still very, very young. She has never lost a single photon of her radiance, and I find her as stunning today, playing the elderly mother of Superman, as I did all these years ago. She is a walking and breathing Halleluiah to the spirit of eternal and incandescent loveliness.
If you have not seen this film, I truly envy you.
A final note:
Before you watch this, find "The Gold Rush", first, and then "The Great Dictator", and invest a bit of time In watching Hollywood's "greatest ballet artist" do his dance, in anticipation of watching the story of his life. Before the words "that stuff is OLD" can come out of your mouth, you will be laughing too hard to say them. And, perhaps crying,
You will thank me, I think, for knowing Charlie a little more personally, when you come to his own story.
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We didn't know much about Charlie Chaplin before seeing this film, but this is a GREAT way to get to know him! Downey hits every note: vulnerable, funny, tender, angry, etc. The cast is full of wonderful actors, but one absolute stand-out is Kevin Kline as Douglas Fairbanks! Back to Chaplin...we saw how devastating his mother's mental illness was to him and his brother at a young age as well as how terrible it was to have to put her in a home. It never got any easier for Chaplin to deal with her throughout his life. He seemed to know early on that he wanted to be nothing but a comedian and was successful, but not well paid, until he came to the USA. After arriving here, he discovered silent movies being made, and he could be successful in a profession that he loved. However, his love life was another story until late in life for Chaplin.
I don't do this movie justice with my review. My son and I were both moved by this film. He said it was absolutely one of the best movies he had ever seen. I highly suggest you see this movie.
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I recently watched “Chaplin” on Amazon Instant Video. My overall reaction to it: all I can do is add one more voice to the overwhelming majority of positive reviews written about this remarkable biographical drama about Charlie Chaplin, the silent film star and one of the greatest actors of all time. This 1992 film, which was directed by Richard Attenborough, is based on the famous autobiography that Chaplin wrote and published in 1964. The film features an all-star cast that includes Robert Downey, Jr., Geraldine Chaplin, Anthony Hopkins, Paul Rhys, Marisa Tomei, Moira Kelly, and Kevin Kline.

In his Academy Award-nominated role as Charlie Chaplin, Robert Downey, Jr. is especially noteworthy not only for his acting ability, but also for the tremendous physicality of the stunts he performed throughout the film. Geraldine Chaplin (Charlie Chaplin’s daughter and a tremendously talented and accomplished actor in her own right) gives a masterfully poignant performance as Hannah Chaplin, Charlie’s mentally unstable mother.

William Boyd, Bryan Forbes, and William Goldman’s adapted screenplay is especially interesting in how it honestly shows Chaplin’s greatness and the darker aspects of his life in equal measure. Chaplin is shown as a towering creative genius as an actor, comedian, producer, director, and musician. Having grown up in poverty and having attained great wealth through his own prodigious talents, he remained empathetic toward the less fortunate and generously gave of his time and money to help others. But he was also a perfectionist (sometimes to the point of obsession), and could be very demanding and temperamental. He married four times; his first three marriages ended in divorce after only a few years, and his fourth, to Oona O’Neill (daughter of Nobel Prize-winning playwright Eugene O’Neill), lasted from 1943 until his death in 1977. He apparently had an attraction to underage girls, and his sexual appetites at one point got him falsely accused of fathering an illegitimate daughter. His well-known liberal political stances led to his persecution by FBI director J. Edgar Hoover and his eventual exile from the United States during the McCarthy era.

“Chaplin” is a wonderful film that I like so much that I recently added it to my Amazon Video digital streaming library. Very highly recommended.
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Because Sir Charles Spencer Chaplin had such a varied and eventful 88 years, short of being four hours in length, director Richard Attenborough's biopic of CHAPLIN (1992) is necessarily episodic. In fact, the original cut, taken from over 200 hours of material, was indeed an unwieldy double-feature long monster. Despite severe truncation, there are many high and lowlights in the finished product that illumine the world's most famous silent screen clown, a brilliantly conceived and realized work thanks to an all-star cast topped by Robert Downey Jr.'s amazing Oscar-nominated performance in the role of his lifetime.

(John Barry also received statue consideration for his ideal score.)

The story doesn't gloss over Chaplin's penchant for underage lovers, his clashes with Moral Majority types like J. Edgar Hoover (Kevin Dunn), or his complicated relationship with a mother, as portrayed by Geraldine Chaplin, who was more often in than out of madness.

In retrospect, Chaplin's immovable stance against "talkies" seems ill-considered, yet two of his greatest silent works, CITY LIGHTS (1931) and MODERN TIMES (1936) were made well into the sound era, and he returned to filmed pantomime on more than one occasion well after these.

No matter its percentage of accuracy, for this film is based on the man's own selective autobiography, fans of silent era cinema should see CHAPLIN. Also those who enjoy star-heavy casts will not be disappointed with this modern classic. Consider this list of familiar (and for those depicted, legendary) names: Dan Akyroyd as Mack Sennett, Marisa Tomei as Mabel Normand, Penelope Ann Miller as Edna Purviance, Kevin Kline as Douglas Fairbanks and Diane Lane as Paulette Goddard.

Also here are Anthony Hopkins, Milla Jovovich, Moira Kelly, James Woods, Nancy Travis and David Duchovny.
Archive clips include Sir Charles himself and many of his contemporaries, plus political figures like Joseph McCarthy.

SUGGESTION: Watch "Chaplin" in a two-fer with any of the director/comedian's many great films.
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on May 2, 2015
I have looked for this movie for several years, I liked it when it first came out and turned me into a Robert Downey Jr. fan. I remember Charlie Chaplin and was amazed at how well Robert Downey Jr prepared himself. Well worth watching.
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on April 20, 2017
Excellent movie! So glad I watched it, would watch it again.
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on April 24, 2017
One of those films I wanted to see, but kept putting it off. Great film and easy to see RDJ's brilliance as an actor.
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on November 7, 2014
I avoided this one when it first came out, because I was turned off by Robert Downey Jr. back then. But, with time (and his maturity) have come to appreciate what a fine actor he is and has been. No less is he with "Chaplin.". From Downey's part, I saw the lead as I had not previously expected: a very complex man with a complex and not so uplifting early life. I found myself being drawn to Charles Chaplin beyond the iconic clown and his all too familiar props. For that, all credit must be given to the actor who played Chaplin. In fact, Robert Downey is the movie, as the movie does not play its role so well as the actor. It seemed to wander and for that reason sent my wife to bed. But, all in all, it was worth it and I thank Mr Downey for that.
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on July 21, 2012
CHAPLIN [1992] [15th Anniversary Edition] [Blu-ray] Everyone Has a Wild Side! Even A legend! He Made The Whole World Laugh and Cry!

Robert Downey Jr. captures the essence of comic genius Charlie Chaplin in a compelling, nuanced performance that earned him an OSCAR® and a Golden Globe® nominations for Best Actor. Director Sir Richard Attenborough's well-crafted portrait traces Charlie Chaplin's impoverished London upbringing, extraordinary success as an actor and director, his troubled marriages, scandalous affairs, shocking exile to Switzerland and his triumphant return to Hollywood. The huge star-studded cast includes Kevin Kline, Dan Aykroyd, Milla Jovovich, Diane Lane and Geraldine Chaplin (as her own grandmother), and Robert Downey, Jr.'s astonishing mimicry of Charlie Chaplin's gait, gestures and accents complete a dazzlingly authentic portrait of one of cinema's first pop culture icons.

FILM FACT: Academy Awards® Nominated: Best Actor for Robert Downey Jr. Nominated: Best Original Score for John Barry. Nominated: Best Art Direction for Chris A. Butler and Stuart Craig. BAFTA® Awards: Won: Best Actor for Robert Downey Jr. Nominated: Best Costume Design for Ellen Mirojnick and John Mollo. Nominated: Best Makeup and Hair for Jill Rockow, John Caglione, Jr. and Wally Schneiderman. Nominated: Best Production Design for Stuart Craig. Golden Globe® Awards: Nominated: Best Original Score for John Barry. Nominated: Best Actor for Drama for Robert Downey Jr. Nominated: Best Supporting Actress for Geraldine Chaplin.

Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Geraldine Chaplin, Paul Rhys, John Thaw, Moira Kelly, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Dan Aykroyd, Marisa Tomei, Penelope Ann Miller, Kevin Kline, Maria Pitillo, Milla Jovovich, Kevin Dunn, Deborah Moore, Diane Lane, Nancy Travis, James Woods, Hugh Downer (Charlie Age 5), Nicholas Gatt (Sydney Age 9), Bill Paterson, Anthony Bowles, Howard Lew Lewis, P.H. Moriarty, Thomas Bradford (Charlie Age 14), Liz Porter, Marcus Eyre, Gerald Sim, Graham Sinclair, Karen Lewis, Andrée Bernard, Carole Jahme, Jacqueline Leonard, Claire Perriam, Theresa Petts, David Gant, Mary Healey, Phil Brown, Matthew Cottle, Ena Baga, David Duchovny, David Mooney, Francesca Buller, Nick Corello, Richard Fast, Brad Blumenthal, Yoshio Be, David Totheroh, Jack Totheroh, Jack Ritschel, Heather McNair, Alan Charof, Benjamin Whitrow, Stuart Richman, Mark Vegh, Robert Stephens, Sky Rumph (Charles Chaplin jr. Age 7), Bradley Pierce (Sydney Chaplin jr. Age 8), Richard James, William Dennis Hunt, Michael Blevins, Norbert Weisser, Noah Lee Margetts, John Standing, Michael A. Goorjian (Charles Chaplin Jr.), Michael Cade (Sydney Chaplin Jr.), Emma Lewis, Kenneth W Caravan (uncredited), Charles Chaplin (archive footage uncredited), Virginia Cherrill (archive footage uncredited), Jackie Coogan (archive footage uncredited), Paulette Goddard (archive footage uncredited), Adolf Hitler (archive footage uncredited), Vivien Latham (Silent Movie Actress uncredited), John Howard Lawson (archive footage uncredited), Jack Lemmon (archive footage uncredited), Joseph McCarthy (archive footage uncredited), Annie Muñoz (uncredited), Julius Schaub (archive footage uncredited), Mack Swain (archive footage uncredited), Daniel Taradash (archive footage uncredited) and Laurel Whitsett (uncredited)

Director: Sir Richard Attenborough

Producers: Sir Richard Attenborough, Mario Kassar, Diana Hawkins and Terence A. Clegg

Screenplay: Bryan Forbes, William Boyd, William Goldman, David Robinson (book "Chaplin His Life and Art") and Diana Hawkins (story)

Composer: John Barry

Cinematography: Sven Nykvist

Video Resolution: 1080p

Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1

Audio: English: 2.0 DTS-HD Master Audio

Subtitles: English SDH, French and Spanish

Running Time: 135 minutes

Region: All Regions

Number of discs: 1


Andrew's Blu-ray Review: Sir Richard Attenborough's biographical film ‘CHAPLIN' is of the life and times of Charlie Chaplin, is a very charming, creative and ultimately moving insight into what made Charlie Chaplin tick and shows you why he was a genius and loved by people all over the world. Robert Downey Jr. does a really excellent job at re-creating Charlie Chaplin's graceful slapstick and getting inside the silent-film superstar's head over many years of triumph, defeat, scandal, official persecution, exile, and inner peace.

The film is packed with stars in small roles, as everyone plays second banana to Charlie Chaplin, especially Marisa Tomei, Milla Jovovich, David Duchovney, Dan Akroyd, Moira Kelly, and Geraldine Chaplin, just to name a few. The period accuracy is well done, and the acting is superb and just shows more of Charlie Chaplin doing what he does best in making people laugh! But of course it all showed the negative side when you see James Woods as a prosecutor working hard to nail Charlie Chaplin for anti-American sentiments and making Charlie Chaplin pay $75.00 a week in a paternity case.

To his credit, Sir Richard Attenborough shows `CHAPLIN' as the social activist who had an FBI files, close to 2,000 pages in length. The drama, at times, seemed a bit much for someone known for bringing joy to so many... perhaps, therein lays the irony of Chaplin's life. Seeing this film makes you appreciate why Charlie Chaplin was a genius, especially seeing Robert Downey, Jr. in top form in this Oscar nominated performance and ode to one of cinema's greatest artists who was the forerunner for such "control freaks" as Warren Beatty and Orson Wells. Writer, director, actor, producer, editor... Charlie Chaplin did it all!

As expected from a Sir Richard Attenborough film, ‘CHAPLIN’ boasts strong production values. The editing and camerawork are smooth. There's a wonderful "life imitates art" scene where Charlie Chaplin is being chased by the police, and this couldn't have been better composed. The aging effects are some of the best I've seen. When Charlie Chaplin is old, he looks like he's being played by an elderly actor, not Robert Downey Jr. under a mountain of makeup. Veteran composer John Barry's score, while perhaps too reminiscent of his ‘Dances with Wolves’ music, is evocative. All-in-all, however, even though ‘CHAPLIN’ is fitfully entertaining, it fails to touch enough emotional chords to make it of more than passing interest.

Blu-ray Video Quality – The Blu-ray appears to be derived from the same transfer used for the LIONSGATE 2008 inferior NTSC DVD. The greater resolution afforded by Blu-ray is something of a revelation. In the earlier scenes in England, detail is noticeably improved and colour delineation is superior. You can make out individual faces in images such as the music hall and vaudeville audiences, as well as different articles of clothing in medium shots. But overall the picture remains soft and sometimes almost mushy, and one begins to worry that perhaps the transfer was flawed in a way that DVD's resolution concealed. When Charlie Chaplin steps off the train at Mack Sennett's studio, and snap! The entire photographic style changes. Without calling too much attention to themselves (without, in other words, looking like a Tony Scott or Michael Bay film), images become crisp and finely detailed, and the colours become subtly brighter and less faded. Charlie Chaplin may not know it yet, but he's just taken the step that will change his life, and Sven Nykvist's cinematography registers the transformation. Until now, the film hasn't been available in a home video format capable of fully presenting this transition, which registers unconsciously, unless you're looking for it. Black levels are excellent, and check out those tuxedos, and the film's grain structure appears to be intact and unreduced. Having been completed in an era before digital intermediates were standard practice, the film has been transferred from an analogue source, and close attention reveals the occasional "pulsing" instability caused by gate weave. However, this is minor and will probably not be noticed by most viewers.

Blu-ray Audio Quality – When I viewed the previous inferior NTSC DVD, I was impressed with the improvements caused by matrix-encoding the 2.0 Dolby Digital track. At the time, I didn't think CHAPLIN's soundtrack could be improved short of a discrete remix from original elements. I stand corrected. The DTS and the 2.0 track on the Blu-ray gives John Barry's haunting score an increased presence and musicality that adds to the film's emotional weight. However, I recommend playing the track through front left and right speakers only, the track tended to "bleed" into the surrounds more than I found desirable. As always with such matters, individual tastes and listening spaces will vary. Dialogue remains clear, as has generally been the case with ‘CHAPLIN.’ Surround effects are not a significant factor with this film.

Blu-ray Special Features and Extras: The only real Negative aspect of this excellent Blu-ray is that the extras are shown in the most ridiculous aspect, as you get this small image at the top left hand part of my flat screen Television and I don't know what idiot who produced this ludicrous nonsense and thought it was at all very clever, but to me it is totally ridiculous and I cannot understand why other peoples Reviews have NOT pointed out this ridiculous situation, as I feel it has spoiled what is otherwise an excellent film on ‘CHAPLIN' and again I don't know how LIONSGATE thought this was a professional job, in fact it was a very unprofessional crass action.

Includes 3 documentaries plus a rare home movie of Charlie Chaplin:

Special Feature: "All at Sea" home movie of Charlie Chaplin vacationing in Catalina, California [1080p] [2:27] Rare home movie footage from 1933, shot by Alistair Cooke, then a college student, on Chaplin's boat. It shows Chaplin in private moments, although it also shows how little he could resist the impulse to perform whenever a camera was on. The original footage is 4:3, but it has been pillar boxed for presentation in a 16:9 frame.

Special Feature: "Strolling into the Sunset" documentary with Director Sir Richard Attenborough [1080p] [7: 30] Contemporary interviews with Sir Richard Attenborough, Chaplin's son Michael, film critic Richard Schickel and Chaplin biographer David Robinson, whose book supplied raw material for the film, about the film's genesis and the breakthrough that Downey's casting represented. Sir Richard Attenborough is candid about what he thinks he didn't get right and says he'd like to make the film all over again.

Special Feature: "Chaplin the Hero" documentary on Charlie Chaplin's contributions to film [1080p] [6:00] A reminiscence of a great career, with a mixture of vintage clips and 'Chaplin' footage alongside numerous interview snippets.

Special Feature: "The Most Famous Man in the World" documentary on Charlie Chaplin's status as a pop icon [1080p] [5:00] A continuation of sorts of the above feature, again reminiscing about Charlie Chaplin. I don't see why this needed to be a separate feature.

Theatrical Trailer [1992] [2:00] If you listen to the voiceover, you can hear the marketing department struggling for a hook to sell the film. "Chaaaaaarrrrrrliiiiie!"

Finally, 'CHAPLIN' isn't a perfect film, nor is it among the top biopics ever made. It is, however, the home of one of the best biopic acting performances out there. Robert Downey Jr. is a fantastic Charlie Chaplin, and watching him recreate the classic, most memorable scenes. Despite slight negative aspects of this Blu-ray, it is still an excellent film and another aspect that is wrong about this Blu-ray disc is that Amazon on both sides of the Atlantic, says that it is just one Region, well I can tell you that information is totally wrong, as it is as stated on the Back Cover that it is All Regions. Highly Recommended!

Andrew C. Miller – Your Ultimate No.1 Film Fan
Le Cinema Paradiso
WARE, United Kingdom
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