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British Legends: The Life and Legacy of Charlie Chaplin

British Legends: The Life and Legacy of Charlie Chaplin [Kindle Edition]

Charles River Editors
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

*Includes pictures of Chaplin and important people, places, and events in his life.
*Includes Chaplin's own quotes about his work, politics, and more.
*Includes a Bibliography for further reading.
*Includes a Table of Contents.

“I remain just one thing, and one thing only — and that is a clown. It places me on a far higher plane than any politician.” – Charlie Chaplin

Only a select few actors become international stars in their time, but none had as unique a career as Charlie Chaplin. Chaplin was the first true film star, and he managed to do so even when films were still silent. He has been honored with too many awards to count, and the fact that his name remains instantly recognizable nearly a century after his first film is a testament to his influence.

Even today, Chaplin’s films are arguably more recognizable than those of perhaps any other actor or director; everyone is familiar with the famous “Tramp” costume and persona, and even the casual film enthusiast has likely seen films such as City Lights (1931) and Modern Times (1936). Chaplin is known for the singular blend of pathos and humor evinced by his films, and it is not uncommon for audiences to laugh and cry at alternate points of a Chaplin film, a trait that continues to endear audiences even to this day. For this reason, in his review of Stephen Weissman’s biography of Chaplin, Martin Sieff noted, “It is doubtful any individual has every given more entertainment, pleasure, and relief to so many human beings when they needed it most.”

As Sieff’s comment suggests, Chaplin’s career coincided with the two World Wars and the Great Depression, but while Chaplin the actor was popular, Chaplin the person became controversial in the final decades of his life. In fact, there is a wide discrepancy between the almost uniformly enthusiastic praise of Chaplin today and the subversive identity he cultivated toward the latter part of his career. Although accusations of being a communist sympathizer and Chaplin’s confrontation with the House Committee on Un-American Activities have mostly become a footnote in the storied career of a man best remembered as an acting pioneer, it forced Chaplin to spend the last 15 years of his career working as an artist in exile, and the shifting viewpoints of Chaplin were instrumental in forcing people to evaluate the way in which they viewed celebrities, as well as what it means to be entertained. Indeed, it is impossible to substantiate the belief that Chaplin’s later films are poorer in quality than his earlier ones, yet the public largely rejected his later directorial efforts. In the end, it must be acknowledged that, more than any other figure who had come before him, the public was aware of Chaplin’s personal life in ways that were often upsetting and inconsistent with the persona effected through his films.

Due to the way Chaplin was vilified, relatively little is known about the final chapter of Chaplin’s life, and one of the prevailing tensions concerning Chaplin is the way in which he is incredibly famous on the one hand but also a particularly mysterious and even unknown figure on the other hand. After Chaplin’s body was stolen from his grave, Kenneth Schuyler Lynn pointed out that “the image of his empty gravesite came to symbolize his historic elusiveness, as a person no less than as a performer.”

How is it that a director who is arguably more famous than any other also held such an “elusive” sensibility? British Legends: The Life and Legacy of Charlie Chaplin comprehensively examines Chaplin’s life and films, exploring the controversies and the ways in which his life and works are mutually informative. Along with pictures of important people, places, and events, you will learn about Charlie Chaplin like you never have before, in no time at all.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 911 KB
  • Print Length: 59 pages
  • Publisher: Charles River Editors (28 Jan 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00B7AWA32
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #351,207 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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3.0 out of 5 stars OK as it was free! 2 July 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
What I like about this book is (a) it was free when I got it and (b) it has some pictures of Charlie in it. Other than that it has a lot of shortcomings - a few factual errors and a lot of "opinion". This reads like a college thesis rather than a proper book. For a definitive book about Charlie Chaplin I recommend the David Robinson biography, or Charlie's autobiography which is very honest and revealing (although there are sections of his life that he glosses over and some that he doesn't mention at all!).

Anyway, for a freebie for an introduction to Chaplin this is OK but if you can afford to spend a bit more on the others, do. Or, better still, get one of the British Film Institute DVDs of his films and see how funny he really was.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Very concise and well written 16 Feb 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Very concise and well written. And provides you with an insight to Charlie Chaplin..could be a bit more informative however.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 2.8 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Short and informative 4 Mar 2013
By Nancy - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I was pleased with this book. It is concise and to the point. I knew nothing about Charlie Chaplin's life, so this was a great introduction. I think that the author did a good job describing the major events in his life, from early childhood up until the end of his life, and explaining what influenced him over the years. I would definitely recommend it as a "first read". I might add that I got this kindle book for free!! What a deal!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Lifeand Legacy of Charlie chaplin 26 Feb 2013
By Peter Holmes - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I only chose 3, as I was a little disappointed as it only gave a brief summery of the life of Charlie Chaplin.
3.0 out of 5 stars Good Start 31 Mar 2013
By Christin - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
This book is a good place to start for those unfamiliar with Charlie Chaplin's life and works. That being said, there are certainly better biographies out there.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Boring 5 Mar 2013
By ArmyMom - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
Not worth my time, I forced myself to read about 25% of this and it was badly written and just plain boring.
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