Regular readers should know of my intense love of Charlie Chaplin and his films. Have you ever seen anything as moving as the dynamic between the Tramp and his adopted son in The Kid? As funny as the tightrope and monkey shenanigans in The Circus? As profound as the Jewish barber's speech at the end of The Great Dictator? (Speaking of: check this out.) City Lights is considered one of the best romantic comedies ever created, and the final shot in Modern Times never fails to bring a tear to my eye.
Of course, he dropped off in popularity after his first talkie, 1940's The Great Dictator, but he continued to produce quality work. One such example is 1952's Limelight, which has an added bonus: a cameo by fellow silent comic genius Buster Keaton, who, in the film, performs a comedy routine with Chaplin's character, Calvero.
Naturally, the perceived rivalry between the two led to all sorts of rumors about difficulties on the set, although in actuality it was a very pleasant filmmaking experience for them both.
However: the rivalry is being exploited this weekend in round two of the Louisville Film Society's Buster vs. Charlie series, in which short films by each of the artists are juxtaposed with each other in an effort to ascertain: who is the best? Enhancing the experience, the musical score for the films is provided by live accompaniment, this month by Bourbon Baroque. The films to be screened this time around are Keaton's The Pale Face and The Haunted House and Chaplin's A Day's Pleasure.
Buster vs. Charlie takes place tonight, Friday, and tomorrow, Saturday, at 8:00 pm and Sunday at 2:00. Admission is $10 for LFS members, $12 for the general public, and $6 for children 12 and under. The Dreamland Film Center is located at 810 E. Market Street. Complete information can be found at the LFS website.
Image: LFS website