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Arthouse Movie Listings January 8-14, 2014

The Castro Theatre. Sing Along The Little Mermaid: Join Ariel, Flounder, Sebastian, and the rest of the Disney fishes in this sing-along featuring subtitled song lyrics. Through Jan. 10. The Little Tramp at 100: A Charlie Chaplin Centennial Celebration: The…
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Calendar, Night&Day Centennial of A Kid

Centennial of A Kid

It's tempting to think that movies from a century ago aren't much to look at by today's standards — that, by now, all they really can do for us is immortalize a whole artform's cringe-worthy juvenilia. We forget that…
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Calendar, Night&Day Don’t Tell Mama

Don’t Tell Mama

Short on narrative but rich in imagery and portent, Cabaret-Berlin: The Wild Scene, weaves together original photographs, paintings, home movies, news clippings, documentary footage, and audio archives into an impressionistic collage representing the Weimar Kabarett. While today Bertolt Brecht and…
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Calendar, Night&Day Whistle While You're Off Work

Whistle While You're Off Work

Unlike Charlie Chaplin, Walt Disney didn’t completely abandon short subjects for features. After all, there was a lot of money in cartoons, especially after television stepped into the role of cut-rate babysitter in the ‘50s. But Disney was just as…
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Calendar, Night&Day Only the Good Stuff

Only the Good Stuff

Nouveau-silent film director Nara Denning is one of those unrecognized geniuses of S.F. Her work is confusingly high in quality — how could she come out of nowhere and yet be so good, not just in concept or aesthetic, but…
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Calendar, Night&Day Zen and the Art of Humor

Zen and the Art of Humor

One of our biggest problems with organized religion – and we're sure we're not alone on this – is its pervasive humorlessness. To our knowledge (and we'll admit that it's not that extensive), nowhere in any of the holy books…
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Calendar, Night&Day Glen David Gold

Glen David Gold

Glen David Gold's Sunnyside, new this month in paperback, explores what he calls the "mysterious alchemy" by which "Charlie Chaplin became the repository of the soul of the 20th century." That sounds sort of painful, especially for one so delicate…
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Culture, Bookcap

May Literary Events

Monday, May 24 While we're on the subject of Booksmith events involving local author Glen David Gold (see above), allow me to point out another Booksmith event involving local author Glen David Gold. His recent novel, Sunnyside, new this month…
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Calendar, Night&Day Was a Miner, '49er

Was a Miner, '49er

If you ever wish to be instantly loved by everyone you meet, dress up as Charlie Chaplin. Hardened criminals, Republicans, real estate developers, tiny children: All humans, no matter how frightening they are or how unlikely you think it is…
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Calendar, Night&Day The Lady Organist and the Tramp

The Lady Organist and the Tramp

"The Little Tramp" is undoubtedly the stage name of some burlesque performer by now. But this New Year's Eve, the Goth cathedral screens three short films by the original proprietor of that sobriquet, Charlie Chaplin. Not only are you looking…
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Calendar, Night&Day The Great Dictator Overthrowers

The Great Dictator Overthrowers

Obviously, the Indie Press of the Month party has something to do with Charlie Chaplin this time around; it's City Lights publishers feted by Modern Times Bookstore. So what would the Little Tramp like to see being done in his…
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Calendar, Night&Day The Killer Tramp

The Killer Tramp

The rap against Charlie Chaplin, voiced by fans of fellow silent-screen comic giants Buster Keaton and Harold Lloyd, is that he was sentimental to the point of maudlin. It wasn’t sufficient for Chaplin to earn the audience’s laughs; he had…
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Calendar, Night&Day You're in It

You're in It

House is the thing to take your boyfriend to, even if he hates dance performance. He’s certain to say afterward, "It was actually really cool." And you'll think, "No shit, moron." Just think how happy you'll both be! We aren't…
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Calendar, Night&Day Artists' Union

Artists' Union

On a February day in 1919, four pissed-off heavyweights of the silent era signed a pact. Although the movie industry was still young, businessmen had already figured out how to assert themselves over the talent. The studio heads controlled budgets…
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Calendar, Night&Day Chaplin's Big Finish

Chaplin's Big Finish

The ten-day series PFA at the Castro: Charles Chaplin ends today with an appropriately groundbreaking film: The Great Dictator, Chaplin's first talkie and his most commercial film. Dictator, a biting slab of satire aimed at Nazi Germany, is all the…
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Dining, Eat Brenda's French Soul Food Kicks It Creole

Brenda's French Soul Food Kicks It Creole

Nothing cheers up an otherwise cheerless street like an inviting eatery. A sufficiently intriguing restaurant or food shop can be like a canary in the mineshaft. If it survives, the entire neighborhood can change, improving around its new inhabitants, as…
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Culture, Stage Precarious


In one of the most famous scenes in Charlie Chaplin's movie The Gold Rush, the star's Little Tramp character — a lone prospector fortune-hunting in wintry Alaska — finds himself marooned in a dilapidated log cabin with a fellow gold…
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Culture, Books

Chaplin and Agee

By John Wranovics Palgrave Macmillan (2005), $24.95 You can visualize the imagery, as arresting as it is iconic: Charlie Chaplin's Little Tramp, the apparent sole survivor of a nuclear attack on New York City. As conceived by the celebrated writer…
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Calendar, Night&Day Positively Silent

Positively Silent

Too often, "silent" films are defined by the negative implicit in the term: There's no talking. What's left out is the positive pleasure of not having your communion with the screen interfered with by the buzzes, clacks, and clicks of…
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Calendar, Night&Day

This Week's Day-by-Day Picks

Wednesday, December 24, 2003 Grinchiness, sour moods, and lack of faith in humanity are all curable. They're contagious, it's true, and sometimes unpreventable, but they can be treated: Exposure to high-quality live gospel music has been shown to improve elasticity…
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