Chaplin The Mirror of Opinion Author:David Robinson (from inside cover) — "More books have been written about Charles Chaplin than any other artist in films. Not surprisingly, for Chaplin had one of the longest careers in cinema- he was acting and directing for well over half a century- and his life story was a remarkable one. From a childhood of acute poverty he became, by his twenty-fifth year, ... more »the best-known and best-loved figure in the world. His films always revealed his own awareness of the unpredictable oddity of fate: another quarter of a century was to see him rejected an reviled by a considerable section of the American public and, eventually, exiled from the land which he had adopted and where he had made some of the most famous and enduring films in cinema history.
In this book David Robinson surveys Chaplin's career as it is mirrored in the opinion of passing time- the writings of several generations of critics and commentators over the seventy years since Chaplin first entered films. From the early praise of Dellue and Linder and later Lloyd, Keaton and Eisenstein, through James Agee and Andrew Sarris to David Thomson, Robinson charts the shifts in attitude to the man and his work. He concludes that a fesh evaluation is under way and that it is still true to say that in his character of the Tramp, Chaplin created the most universally recognised figure of mankind."« less