Blu-ray, DVD Release: The Kid (1921)

Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: Feb. 16, 2015
Price: DVD $29.95, Blu-ray $39.95
Studio: Criterion


Charlie Chaplin (Modern Times) was already an international star when he decided to break out of the short-film format and make the 1921 film The Kid, his first full-length feature.

Charlie Chaplin and Jackie Coogan in The Kid

Charlie Chaplin and Jackie Coogan in The Kid

The Kid doesn’t merely show Chaplin at a turning point, when he proved that he was a serious film director—it remains an expressive masterwork of silent cinema. A family-friendly comedy-drama, the film stars Chaplin as his lovable Tramp character, this time raising an orphan (a remarkable young Jackie Coogan) he has rescued from the streets.

Chaplin and Coogan make a miraculous pair in this nimble marriage of sentiment and slapstick, a movie that is, as its opening title card states, “a picture with a smile—and perhaps, a tear.”

Criterion’s Blu-ray and DVD editions of the classic film contain the following:

  • New 4K digital restoration of Charlie Chaplin’s 1972 rerelease version of the film, featuring an original score by Chaplin, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New audio commentary featuring Chaplin historian Charles Maland
  • Jackie Coogan: The First Child Star, a new video essay by Chaplin historian Lisa Haven
  • A Study in Undercranking, a new piece featuring silent-film specialist Ben Model
  • Interviews with Coogan and actor Lita Grey Chaplin
  • Excerpted audio interviews with cinematographer Rollie Totheroh and film distributor Mo Rothman
  • Deleted scenes and titles from the original 1921 version of The Kid
  • “Charlie” on the Ocean, a 1921 newsreel documenting Chaplin’s first return trip to Europe
  • Footage of Chaplin conducting his score for The Kid
  • Nice and Friendly, a 1922 silent short featuring Chaplin and Coogan, presented with a new score by composer Timothy Brock
  • Trailers
  • An essay by film historian Tom Gunning

 

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About Laurence

Founder and editor Laurence Lerman saw Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest when he was 13 years old and that’s all it took. He has been writing about film and video for more than a quarter of a century for magazines, anthologies, websites and most recently, Video Business magazine, where he served as the Reviews Editor for 15 years.