Sight Gags and Charlie Chaplin Essay

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Sight Gags and Charlie Chaplin We have all seen it done before, either in real life or in the movies. A situation is funny because of the misinterpretation of someone's actions or the complete conflict of what a situation seems to be and what it really is. People come into contact with sight gags all the time. One might be trying to be sneaky and hide something and then when someone looks, one pretends to be doing something else not to get caught. One could also pantomime using an umbrella as a baseball bat. These are both basic forms of sight gags. Sight gags are an essential part of comedy, especially the silent comedies of Charlie Chaplin's time. A sight gag is a visual form of comedy. In this form of comedy, the actors rely on…show more content…
The accuser, however, had not seen that Chaplin had put the money in her pocket in the first place. This misunderstanding makes the scene funny when the man tells the woman to check her pockets and she is overjoyed to find money. The second sight gag discussed is the mimed metaphor, which is when an actor uses pantomime as a gag. For this, the actor uses an object that is very recognizable and pantomimes something that is not its proper use. This is a kind of "visual simile," and is generally used in silent films more than sound films. The mimed metaphor is different from the mutual interface gag in that there are not multiple points of view to consider, they often do not result in mishaps, and commonly deal with objects rather than events. The mimed metaphor is used in the film The Count, in which at one point Chaplin's character uses his cane like a pool cue in order to hit an object off the table. At the beginning of The Immigrant Chaplin's character is hanging over the side of the boat. The audience gets the impression that he is seasick, however we soon learn that he is actually just fishing. This is a perfect example of switch image. In the beginning, the audience is led to believe one thing, but with the revelation of new details we soon realize that our perception of the situation was wrong, and generally our perception changes to something

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