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City Lights (1931)

With the aid of a wealthy erratic tippler, a dewy-eyed tramp who has fallen in love with a sightless flower girl accumulates money to be able to help her medically.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Florence Lee ...
...
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James - the Millionaire's Butler (as Allan Garcia)
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A Prizefighter
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A Tramp (as Charlie Chaplin)
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Storyline

A tramp falls in love with a beautiful blind girl. Her family is in financial trouble. The tramp's on-and-off friendship with a wealthy man allows him to be the girl's benefactor and suitor. Written by John J. Magee <magee@helix.mgh.harvard.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 March 1931 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

City Lights: A Comedy Romance in Pantomime  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,500,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$19,181 (USA) (6 July 2007)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| (musical score)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The plot gradually grew from an initial concept Charles Chaplin had considered after the success of The Circus (1928), where a circus clown goes blind and has to conceal his handicap from his young daughter by pretending that his inability to see are pratfalls. See more »

Goofs

(at around 39 mins) When the Tramp accidentally swallows the whistle, his real eyebrows are visible beneath his fake ones. This was done intentionally to give him a lopsided, intoxicated facial expression. See more »

Quotes

The Tramp: Tomorrow the birds will sing.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood Mouth 2 (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Happy Romance
(1931) (uncredited)
Music by Charles Chaplin
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
You can't go wrong with Charlie Chaplin, but City Lights is even better than Chaplin's films usually are.
22 December 2000 | by (Luoyang, China) – See all my reviews

Chaplin takes himself a little more seriously in City Lights, and the results are spectacular. The musical score which Chaplin composed for the film was one of the many highlights, and even though Charlie's performance is much more dramatic than usual in some scenes, the hilarious comedy for which he is known and loved is still abundant.

City Lights is so well made that it is one of the very few movies in which the obvious flaws can be gladly overlooked. Yes, you can clearly see the string holding Chaplin up in the sidesplittingly funny boxing scene, but who cares? That is such classic slapstick that little things like that really don't matter. Besides, let's keep in mind that this movie was made seventy years ago.

Chaplin does a phenomenal job in his traditional role of the tramp, and develops a perfectly convincing romantic relationship with the blind flower girl on the sidewalk. His friendship with the drunken rich guy is hilarious, but it also makes a significant comment about the problems of alcohol. This is truly a great film, which should not be forgotten.


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