2009 | 74 mins | Rated G
Directed by Kathryn Millard
Newly re-mastered from original film materials, The Boot Cake celebrates the universal power of silent cinema to engage audiences, young and old, free of language barriers, whenever and wherever it has the opportunity. The film was largely shot in India and observes the way in which Charlie Chaplin’s “Tramp” character is remembered in the provincial town of Adipur in Western India. There, everyone from toddlers to the frail aged, dresses in Chaplin costumes and parades in honour of Chaplin’s birthday. The local doctor who initiated the annual festivities, routinely prescribes Chaplin’s comedies as a tonic for well-being and mental health. The filmmaker herself participates in the ceremony by bringing the all-important birthday cake, designed in the shape of the boot that the starving Chaplin eats in The Gold Rush. “An astonishing testament to the far-reaching influence of silent film.” – David Robinson, film critic and Chaplin’s biographer.
With discussion after the screening with Kathryn Millard and film archivist Dr Ray Edmondson, President of the Friends of the NFSA.