Silent Clown: Max Linder and Charlie Chaplin
Charlie Chaplin and Max Linder
The Silent Clown: Max Linder and Charlie Chaplin
Max Linder Shorts Program 1912-1921 All ages
35MM, BLACK & WHITE, SILENT, 60 MINUTES, FRANCE, FRENCH INTERTITLES (ENGLISH SUBTITLES) / DIRECTOR/SCRIPT/LEAD ACTOR: MAX LINDER (EXCEPT MAX TAKES A PICTURE, DIRECTED BY LUCIEN NONGUET)
Max décoré (Max Sets the Style) 1914 / 9 minutes
Le Hasard et l'amour (Love’s Surprises) 1913 / 6 minutes
Max fait de la photo (Max Takes a Picture) 1913 / 13 minutes
Jockey par Amour 1913 / 13 minutes
Troubles of a Grasswidower (Max reprend sa liberté) 1912 / 10 minutes
Be My Wife 1921 / 13 minutes
Showcasing Max Linder’s ‘Max’ character in all his comic glory, this selection of Linder’s career spans from his early French ‘one reeler’ short films to surviving segments of late career US-made features Be My Wife and Seven Years Bad Luck. A debonair rogue, Max’s mischievous intentions to photograph a beautiful woman in her swimming costume backfires with disastrous just deserts in Max Takes a Picture. Be My Wife was Linder’s second feature made in the US for an English-speaking audience. Only an excerpt of the feature remains which includes a spectacular sequence of Max behind a curtain boxing with himself to create the illusion of bravely fending off an intruder in order to win the favour of the lady of the house.
Sat 28 Jun 11.00am / Cinema A
Seven Years Bad Luck 1921 All ages
35MM, BLACK AND WHITE, SILENT, 65 MINUTES, USA, ENGLISH INTERTITLES / DIRECTOR/SCRIPT/LEAD ACTOR: MAX LINDER
Seven Years Bad Luck was Max Linder’s first attempt to break into the Hollywood market and capture the wider English speaking audience. Linder wrote, produced, directed and starred in the feature. The film unfortunately didn’t win over US audiences, who already had their favourite comic stars, but its innovative ideas left a lasting mark on US film and television. One such original gag from the film sees Linder, after accidentally smashing a mirror, attempting to mask his mistake by leaping behind the empty frame, mimicking the movements of the unsuspecting mirror-gazer. The gag was later reused by many Hollywood comedians including the Marx Bros’ in their feature Duck Soup 1927.
Sun 29 Jun 11.00am and Sun 13 Jul 11.00am / Cinema A
City Lights 1931 All ages
35MM, BLACK AND WHITE, SILENT, (MONO MUSIC AND EFFECTS), 87 MINUTES, USA, ENGLISH INTERTITLES / DIRECTOR/SCRIPT/LEAD ACTOR: CHARLIE CHAPLIN
Charlie Chaplin’s iconic Tramp falls in love with a blind flower seller and attempts to raise enough money for an operation to restore her sight. Chaplin, an admirer of Max Linder’s innovative comic timing, reportedly included the scene of himself in the arms of a statue in City Lights as s tribute to Linder, referencing the French comedian’s film Max and the Statue 1912. Although City Lights was produced after the invention of sound “talkie” movies, it relies on intertitles to convey the dialogue, using sound only for minor sound effects and score. Chaplin counted City Lights as one of his greatest artistic achievements; having written directed, stared and composed the film’s musical score.
Sat 5 Jul 11.00am and Sat 12 Jul 11.00am / Cinema A
L'homme au chapeau de soie (The Man in the Silk Hat) 1983 All ages
35MM, BLACK AND WHITE, MONO, 75 MINUTES, FRANCE, FRENCH (ENGLISH SUBTITLES) / DIRECTOR/SCRIPT/NARRATOR: MAUD LINDER
After suffering long bouts of depression, Max Linder tragically committed suicide at the age of 42 in a suicide pact with his wife in 1925. They left behind their baby daughter Maud Linder. Maud grew up without knowledge of her true heritage and it was not until adulthood did she discover who her parents had been. Since then Maud Linder has worked to raise the profile of her father’s rich body of work. This, her directorial debut, documents the life and movies of Max Linder. Including excerpts from Max Linder’s early situation comedies, when he was the highest paid French actor prior to World War One, the film provides insight into the innovative timing and physical comedy styles pioneered by Linder.
Wed 2 Jul 2.00pm / Cinema A
En compagnie de Max Linder (Laugh with Max Linder) 1963 All ages
35MM, BLACK AND WHITE, MONO, 88 MINUTES, FRANCE, FRENCH (ENGLISH SUBTITLES) / DIRECTOR: MAX LINDER / COMPILED BY MAUD LINDER.
A collection of the surviving films Max Linder made while in the US, Laugh with Max Linder includes excerpts from three feature films Seven Years Bad Luck 1921 Be My Wife 1921 and The Three Must-Get-Theres 1922. During Linder’s time in the US he became friends with Charlie Chaplin who gave Linder a photograph inscribed “To the one and only Max ‘the Professor’ from his disciple Charlie Chaplin.” The mischievous dapper ‘Max’ appears in both Be My Wife and Seven Years, displaying his classic ‘Max’ pursuance of the opposite sex. The Three Must-Get-Theres is Linder’s engagement with Hollywood as a parody of the Douglas Fairbanks film The Three Musketeers 1921.
Wed 9 Jul 2.00pm / Cinema A
The Circus 1928 All ages
35MM, BLACK AND WHITE, SILENT, 71 MINUTES, USA, ENGLISH / DIRECTOR/SCRIPT/LEAD ACTOR: CHARLIE CHAPLIN
‘The Tramp returns, engaged as a clown in a travelling circus. His love for the ill-treated daughter of the owner, leads him into conflict with a tightrope walker who also seeks her affections. During production, Chaplin’s studio was ravaged by fire, his personal life by scandal, yet he managed to create a successful, clever comedy, packed with comic thrills with many accomplished gags, while also managing to examine the nature of comedy and the response of audiences.’ Stewart Browne
Sun 6 Jul 11.00am / Cinema A
Love's Surprises, Max Takes a Picture, Jockey par Amour, and Seven Years Bad Luck restored by the Archives Francaises du Film du Centre National de la Cinematographie, within an annual restoration program of early films directed by the French Ministry of Culture.