Modern Times is a 1936 American silent comedy film written and directed by Charlie Chaplin in which his iconic Little Tramp character struggles to survive in the modern, industrialized world. The film is a comment on the desperate employment and financial conditions many people faced during the Great Depression — conditions created, in Chaplin’s view, by the efficiencies of modern industrialization.
In 1989, Modern Times was one of the first 25 films selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the United States National Film Registry for being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”. Fourteen years later, it was screened “out of competition” at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival.
Charlie Chaplin at a War Bonds rally in Manhattan during World War II.