Anatomy of a Gag

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Hollywood’s Top Dog

Anatomy of a Gag

Hollywood’s Top Dog

One of cinema’s most charismatic canines shows off his comedic chops in Leo McCarey’s screwball masterpiece The Awful Truth.

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Charlie & Jackie

Anatomy of a Gag

Charlie & Jackie

In 1921’s The Kid, Charlie Chaplin gave his lonely Tramp a five-year-old sidekick in Jackie Coogan, turning the boy into Hollywood’s first major child star.

Choking Chaplin

Anatomy of a Gag

Choking Chaplin

In the image of the Little Tramp choking, Chaplin found the perfect motif for evoking the horrors of hunger and modern consumption.

Dancing Chaplin

Anatomy of a Gag

Dancing Chaplin

In some of his most elaborately choreographed set pieces, the silent-comedy master confronted the chaos of the world with balletic grace and rhythmic precision.

Being There

Anatomy of a Gag

Being There

David Cairns takes a close look at the carefully calibrated minimalism of Hal Ashby’s masterful satire.

Le grand amour

Anatomy of a Gag

Le grand amour

Beloved for his inventive blend of physical humor and emotional warmth, French director-actor Pierre Etaix passed away last October at the age of eighty-seven. In the second installment of our video series Anatomy of a Gag, filmmaker and critic David…

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