DVD Review: Charlie Chaplin’s The Kid hasn’t aged a day

One would be hard-pressed to find a more perfect fantasy sequence in all of film than the Tramp’s dream of an ersatz heaven in The Kid, with wobbly angel wings that fleck feathers like dandruff and angel dogs who look around in confusion as they are flown away on hidden wires. The sequence, dreamt by Charlie Chaplin’s iconic vagrant as he sleeps on a skid-row stoop, is all the ending that The Kid needs, though the movie appends one anyway: a happy reunion, also staged in a doorway, albeit of an art deco mansion. This unnecessary final scene is the kind of closure that Chaplin would eventually do away with, preferring to end movies on upswells of emotion; it’s safe to say that an older Chaplin would have ended The Kid on the powerfully bittersweet note of the Tramp being roused from his dream, in which he …

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