Friday, October 22, 2010

Charlie Chaplin in Chicago

The Music Box Theater in Chicago is a throwback to another era---an era when going to the cinema was an experience, not a diversion.  It is small---it has seating for a mere 800.  It lacks stadium seating.  The screen is not huge, but is it behind a curtain that opens when the film starts.  On a ceiling that is meant to resemble a night sky, projected clouds casually drift overhead.

The Music Box is an experience.

Built in 1929, it was not a theater visited by Robert Bishop.  It was built in a different decade, a decade that saw the elevation of movie houses into palaces. Our form of the medieval European cathedral.  Although not as big as those palaces found in the Loop, the Music Box Theater was, no doubt, something Robert Bishop would have loved to see.

Starting this weekend and continuing until November 4, the Music Box is screening a Charlie Chaplin film festival.  It will screen over 12 films from Chaplin's career spanning 1918-1957.  Films include classics such as City Lights, The Great Dictator, Modern Times and The Gold Rush.  Also screening on November 2 is one of Chaplin's best shorts:  Pay Day.

Pay Day is a film that was completed in 1922 and features Chaplin at his comedic best.  It is a film that Robert Bishop was waiting to see from Chaplin.

More information about the festival can be found here.

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