What to Watch on Kanopy This Weekend: The Kid, The Gold Rush, and City on Fire
Kanopy provides its viewers with great, unsung movies that deserve consideration, interesting documentaries on a range of different topics, and some of the best films that have been released within the past few years. Below are two movies on Kanopy that you can watch this weekend if you are looking for some thoughtful and thought provoking entertainment.
His bowler hat, recognizable waddle, flat feet, durable bamboo cane and bristly mustache all define Charlie Chaplin’s indelible onscreen persona. This image is just the icing on the cake compared to the social commentary that Chaplin explores in his films. The Kid is no exception. He wrote, directed, produced and starred in the movie as the Tramp, one of his most iconic characters. The Tramp’s hyperactive movement ensures that he commands every scene in The Kid, but the focus stays on an innocent child’s fate.
Although The Kid is lighthearted, Chaplin addresses serious issues such as parenthood, poverty and child custody without being cynical. He knows how to make us think critically about society and laugh until it hurts.
The Gold Rush
The Gold Rush follows the Lone Prospector who searches for the most precious gold in the Klondike region. On his dangerous journey, he braves an unbearable blizzard and stays stuck in a cabin with a criminal, Black Larsen, and his eventual ally, Big Jim McKay, as they all struggle to survive.
Charlie Chaplin shines when he plays an underdog like the Lone Prospector. The various conflicts on his adventure never discourage him. During his pursuit for gold, he learns about the value of friendship and love. The final scenes on a ship remind us that life is not just about accumulating wealth, but it is also about the journey itself that can mold someone’s character.
City on Fire
The 1980s delivered a plethora of explosive action movies, especially in Hong Kong. The 1987 crime film, City on Fire, outshines many other similar films because it effortlessly combines intense, bloody violence with believable doses of realism. Tension always bursts whenever any of the criminals and policemen have to make a critical choice in the heat of the moment. Chow Yun-fat excels as an undercover cop who works alongside a group of jewelry thieves and sets them up in order to bring justice back to Hong Kong, while also maintaining a personal life.
Some 1980s action films embrace over-the-top violence and become trite due to an uninteresting story and characters. City on Fire resists this problem by focusing on the plans and details required in order to pull off the perfect heist or to arrest the criminals at the right time. Visually arresting car chases and abrupt shootouts will still entertain thrill seekers, especially if you are a Quentin Tarantino fan.
By William Anthony, Page and Movie Enthusiast