Great Moments In Film – The Kid (1921)
And we finally get to Charlie Chaplin. This won’t be his last appearance here. In The Kid, Chaplin, as his iconic character “The Little Tramp,” plays a con man who finds a baby in an alley and decides to raise him as his own. Once older, The Tramp includes The Kid (Jackie Coogan) in his endeavors, most notably The Kid would break windows with rocks and The Tramp would arrive as a window repairman soon after.
Eventually, as we see in the scene below, welfare services are called to the The Kid away from The Tramp. While there are funny moments in this particular scene, these are very heartfelt performances by both Chaplin and Coogan. Try not to root for The Tramp to get his son back. I dare you.
It should be noted that not only was The Kid Chaplin’s first feature length film, but it also vaulted Coogan into one of the first child stars in history. It’s easy to see why. He’s also responsible for legislation over child actors’ rights of their salary in regards to their parents (which is a problem still today), but you might know him better as The Addams Family’s Uncle Fester.
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