Limelight Reviews

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Top Critic

TIME Magazine
August 8, 2011
Intended as a tragicomedy, if not a tearjerker, it is a two-thirds bore that comes to life in the last half-hour or so, when the old-master clown stops trying to be pathetic and reverts to his inimitable proper stuff.
Austin Trunick
Under the Radar
May 21, 2015
Some have also accused Limelight of being too sentimental, but we'd argue that's part of its charm.
Full Review | Original Score: 7/10
Christopher Lloyd
Sarasota Herald-Tribune
September 6, 2010
Limelight seems stuck in time, even for 1952. The un-ironic pathos and sentimental humanism seems almost quaint in the post-Hitler world. But that's Chaplin for you - a man who lived by, and wrote, his own rules.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
Philip Martin
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
January 10, 2005
| Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
August 8, 2011
What comes through most clearly in Limelight, however, is that Chaplin had come to terms with his life.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Michael Szymanski
November 7, 2002
| Original Score: 4/5
Brian Gibson
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)
December 1, 2003
| Original Score: 4/5
Cole Smithey
October 21, 2007
| Original Score: 4/5
Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid
June 21, 2004
One of the comedian's most revelatory works. It's Chaplin's most personal and painful film, and the only film to show his onscreen death.
Top Critic
Variety Staff
March 26, 2009
Departing from most forms of Hollywood stereotype, the film has a flavor all its own in the sincere quality of the story anent the onetime great vaudemime and his rescue of a femme ballet student.
Eric Melin
June 13, 2015
It was Chaplin's last great film, and it showcases not just a love for the performing arts (she's a ballerina, he's a vaudevillian), but also Chaplin's effortless sentimentality.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Geoff Andrew
Time Out
February 9, 2006
Few cinema artists have delved into their own lives and emotions with such ruthlessness and with such moving results.
Bob Bloom
Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)
January 27, 2006
Chaplin at his most melancholy. Not his best work, but the short time he and Keaton are on stage together is priceless.
| Original Score: 3/5
Rob Blackwelder
June 10, 2005
| Original Score: 4/5
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews
April 16, 2007
Chaplin's least funny film.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Mark Bourne
April 14, 2006
Premiering in 1952 when Chaplin was 63 years old, this melancholy reverie is a heartfelt expression of nostalgia for the Edwardian London music-halls of his youth, rich with deeply personal sentiment and warmly realized autobiographical fantasy.
Carol Cling
Las Vegas Review-Journal
December 3, 2004
The at-long-last meeting of Chaplin and Keaton makes this a must.
| Original Score: 4/5
Daniel M. Kimmel
Worcester Telegram & Gazette
February 13, 2004
| Original Score: 5/5
Edgardo Cozarinsky
Senses of Cinema
March 26, 2003
It is Chaplin's own control over himself that is remarkable. His two most intense close-ups in the film also show him most distanced from his comic mask, and his acting is totally internalised.
Ken Hanke
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
August 14, 2003
The emotional honesty of the film is what made it a masterpiece.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Top Critic
Seth Colter Walls
Village Voice
September 21, 2011
Eric Henderson
Slant Magazine
September 20, 2011
Top Critic
Linda Barnard
Toronto Star
November 17, 2011
Neil Rosen
September 22, 2011
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