“Mabel’s Strange Predicament” is a silent comedy film produced by Keystone Studios and released in 1914, directed by Mabel Normand and starring Charlie Chaplin. The film is notable for being the first appearance of Chaplin as his iconic character, The Tramp.
The film opens with Mabel (played by Normand) getting locked out of her hotel room in the middle of the night, wearing only a nightgown and slippers. She wanders around the hotel, trying to find a way back into her room, but all the doors are locked. She then encounters The Tramp, a wandering vagabond, who helps her sneak back into her room through a window.
After Mabel falls asleep, The Tramp accidentally wakes her up by snoring loudly. Mabel tries to get him to leave, but he refuses, insisting that he has nowhere else to go. The two then engage in a series of comedic hijinks, including The Tramp stealing a cop’s uniform to sneak out of the hotel, and Mabel pretending to be a wealthy patron in order to avoid paying her bill.
The film ends with The Tramp being chased by a mob of angry people after accidentally setting a dog on fire. Mabel intervenes and helps him escape, and the two part ways.
Overall, “Mabel’s Strange Predicament” is a lighthearted and humorous film that showcases the early comedic talents of Charlie Chaplin and Mabel Normand.
Charles Chaplin, Henry Lehrman
Mabel Normand, Charles Chaplin, Chester Conklin