Though sometimes titled Charlie’s Picnic, A Day’s Pleasure was meant to be ironic because the story is a series of misfortunes: seasickness, fistfights, and a return home that ends with a fight with traffic police in a drying pile of cement. The final screen legend reads, “The end of a perfect day.” You can view it on YouTube.
This unpicnicky day begins with Charlie, his wife and their two children settling into their Ford Model “T” Touring car. Of course, Charlie has trouble cranking the motor –a comedy staple always good for a laugh.
Aboard the ship, Charlie wanders among the passengers, crew, and entertainers. Nothing is immune from his feisty attitude that allows for his usual comic slapstick routines, even a deck chair that he cannot unfold. As the water swells increase Charlie becomes seasick. Searching for the head, he is accosted by a food vendor asking if he wants ham sandwiches, buttered popcorn, cigars and cigarettes. Charlie knocks the vendor’s tray over. Ha! Because the man sitting next to Charlie is crowding him, Charlie sticks him with a pin. This leads to a fist fight that Charlie wins by repeatedly punching his foe in the groin. Ha! Ha! (The great Chaplin had a way with comedy.)
Featured Image: Charlie with a stickpin ready to pounce. Good fun, eh? Charlie (Charles Chaplin), his Wife (Edna Purvance), and their two boys.
See: Charles Chaplin. A Day’s Pleasure (1919). Screenplay Charles Chaplin. First National Film Company