The film that Charlie Chaplin reportedly claimed he’d most like to be remembered for finds his most famous character — The Little Tramp — on the hunt for gold in the snow-covered hills of Canada’s Yukon. The Gold Rush, in fact, has two truly timeless scenes: the “roll dance,” in which he entertains some saloon girls with a pair of forks and two pieces of bread, and this bit of cinema history. Stranded in the remote cabin of prospector “Big Jim” McKay, the Tramp removes one of his shoes and tosses it into a boiling pot. Chaplin consumes his meal with theatrical flourish, twirling the laces in his fork like strands of spaghetti and daintily gnawing at the shoe nails as if they were the delicate bones of a plump game bird.
INTERESTING FACT: Chaplin re-cut the film in 1942 and added narration, a score, and a slightly altered ending. The new version of the silent film earned Oscar nominations for Best Music and Best Sound Recording.
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