Monday, October 03, 2011

The Blind Date (2010)

(Patrick McCarthy, US 2010) D, P, SC, DP, ED: Patrick McCarthy; cast: Patrick McCarthy (a tramp), Duke Fairchild (fisherman), James Gavin (hobo, thief), Scott Largen (guy on phone), Vince Keung (online lover), Nico Salinas (boy at play), Jamie Smith (police officer), Lorelle Stephanski (damsel); DVD, 7’ (24 fps); from: Patrick McCarthy, Los Angeles. English intertitles. Viewed at Teatro Verdi, Le Giornate del Cinema Muto, Pordenone, e-subtitles in Italian, grand piano: Donald Sosin, 3 Oct 2011.

David Robinson (GCM Catalogue): "It is the supreme audacity to try to imitate Charles Chaplin – particularly if you are 6 feet 2, wear size 12 shoes, and do not share a single physical feature with the Little Tramp. Patrick McCarthy takes the chance, and gets away with it, thanks to the Chaplinesque innocence he brings to his hero, and the intriguing idea of transporting the unwitting Little Tramp through time to the world of cell-phones and online dating. McCarthy’s ultimate test came when the film was premiered for last year’s scholarly and critical International Chaplin Conference in Zanesville, Ohio. Disarmed, they cheered without reserve." – DAVID ROBINSON

Patrick McCarthy writes: “As someone trying to be a filmmaker, I learned about the great minds that laid the groundwork for cinema as we know it today. When I discovered Chaplin, he embodied everything I try to be as a person and as a filmmaker. I had such a grand appreciation for what he did and how he did it, that I felt it would be impossible to move on and make my own mark on cinema without first paying tribute to him. So, this short film transposes his most famous tramp character into society as I know and see it today.The tramp character still exists in a silent world because it gives him the most universal voice.And I could imagine no greater pleasure than developing a silent film around one of the most transcendent characters of all time.

AA: It should be impossible with the tall Patrick McCarthy, but somehow it works, and the Chaplin spirit is alive here. "Need a job?" There are affinities with the simplest Chaplin Keystone shorts such as Getting Acquainted. There is a park, a policeman, a fisherman, and as modern touches, an online lover and his date. The flower is their marker.

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