Wednesday, March 24, 2010

We’re reviewing Modern Times in my History of Narrative film course. This is one of my favorite Chaplin movies. I think he gets arrested about six times. This is one of my favorite scenes. Skip to about 5:00.

Also, check out my favorite modern poet Hart Crane, and see what he has to say about Chaplin.

by Hart Crane

We make our meek adjustments,
Contented with such random consolations
As the wind deposits
In slithered and too ample pockets.

For we can still love the world, who find
A famished kitten on the step, and know
Recesses for it from the fury of the street,
Or warm torn elbow coverts.

We will sidestep, and to the final smirk
Dally the doom of that inevitable thumb
That slowly chafes its puckered index toward us,
Facing the dull squint with what innocence
And what surprise!

And yet these fine collapses are not lies
More than the pirouettes of any pliant cane;
Our obsequies are, in a way, no enterprise.
We can evade you, and all else but the heart:
What blame to us if the heart live on.

The game enforces smirks; but we have seen
The moon in lonely alleys make
A grail of laughter of an empty ash can,
And through all sound of gaiety and quest
Have heard a kitten in the wilderness.

1 comment:

  1. Nice (especially the poem). I miss the days when music played such an important role in film.