Charlie chaplin

The timeless mystery of Charlie Chaplin

Eleven years ago, I was summoned to the Manoir de Ban, a huge white house overlooking Lake Geneva, to meet Michael Chaplin, Charlie Chaplin’s oldest surviving son. Charlie Chaplin had lived here for the last 24 years of his life. Now the house was empty, and the family wanted to turn it into a museum. I doubted it would ever happen, but I was keen to look around the house and I was eager to meet Michael. Chaplin’s biographer, Simon Louvish, had called him ‘the family rebel’. Michael had written a frank teenage memoir called I Couldn’t Smoke the Grass on My Father’s Lawn. The house was all shut up,

May put you off Chaplin for ever: The Real Charlie Chaplin reviewed

Charlie Chaplin is one of the most famous movie stars ever and is certainly the most famous movie star with a little toothbrush moustache. He was around when I was growing up as his films were often on television, particularly, if I recall rightly, on Saturday mornings. My sisters and I resented that as we wanted to watch The Partridge Family (or The Brady Bunch) on the other side but my father loved him, and I do remember being struck by his childlike innocence, as well as all the falling over. (Chaplin’s, not my father’s.) I now regret watching this documentary. Not because it’s bad (it isn’t) but because I