Best Movies of 1915


The Birth of a Nation


Two families, abolitionist Northerners the Stonemans and Southern landowners the Camerons, intertwine in director D.W. Griffith's controversial Civil War epic. When Confederate colonel Ben Cameron is captured in battle, nurse Elsie Stoneman petitions for his pardon. In Reconstruction-era South Carolina, Cameron founds the Ku Klux Klan, battling Elsie's congressman father and his African-American protégé, Silas Lynch.

Starring: Lillian Gish, Mae Marsh, Henry B. Walthall, Miriam Cooper, Mary Alden
Directed by: D.W. Griffith
Release date: 1915-02-08

The Tramp

The Little Fellow finds the girl of his dreams and work on a family farm. He helps defend the farm against criminals, and all seems well, until he discovers the girl of his dreams already has someone in her life. Unwilling to be a problem in their lives, he takes to the road, though he is seen skipping and swinging his cane as if happy to be back on the road where he knows he belongs.
Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Ernest Van Pelt, Paddy McGuire, Lloyd Bacon
Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
Release date: 1915-04-12

The Bank

A janitor at a bank is in love with a secretary and dreams that she has fallen in love with him too.
Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Carl Stockdale, Charles Inslee, Leo White
Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
Release date: 1915-08-09

The Champion

Walking along with his bulldog, Charlie finds a "good luck" horseshoe just as he passes a training camp advertising for a boxing partner "who can take a beating." After watching others lose, Charlie puts the horseshoe in his glove and wins. The trainer prepares Charlie to fight the world champion. A gambler wants Charlie to throw the fight. He and the trainer's daughter fall in love.
Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Ernest Van Pelt, Lloyd Bacon, Leo White
Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
Release date: 1915-03-11

A Woman

Mother, father and daughter go to the park. The women doze off on a bench while the father plays a hide-and-seek game with a girl, blindfolded. Charlie leads him into a lake. Both dozing ladies on the bench fall for Charlie and invite him for dinner. The father returns home with a friend. Charlie rushes upstairs and dresses like a woman, shaving his mustache. Both men fall for Charlie.
Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Charles Inslee, Marta Golden, Margie Reiger
Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
Release date: 1915-07-12

A Night in the Show

Mr. Pest tries several theatre seats before winding up in front in a fight with the conductor. He is thrown out. In the lobby he pushes a fat lady into a fountain and returns to sit down by Edna. Mr. Rowdy, in the gallery, pours beer down on Mr. Pest and Edna. He attacks patrons, a harem dancer, the singers Dot and Dash, and a fire-eater.
Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Charlotte Mineau, Dee Lampton, Leo White
Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
Release date: 1915-11-20


Charlie and his boss have difficulties just getting to the house they are going to wallpaper. The householder is angry because he can't get breakfast and his wife is screaming at the maid as they arrive. The kitchen gas stove explodes, and Charlie offers to fix it. The wife's secret lover arrives and is passed off as the workers' supervisor, but the husband doesn't buy this and fires shots. The stove explodes violently, destroying the house.
Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Charles Inslee, Edna Purviance, Billy Armstrong, Marta Golden
Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
Release date: 1915-06-21

A Burlesque on Carmen

A gypsy seductress is sent to sway a goofy officer to allow a smuggling run.
Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Jack Henderson, Ben Turpin, Leo White
Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
Release date: 1915-12-18

His New Job

When one of the actors on a movie set doesn't show up, Charlie gets his chance to be on camera and replaces the actor. While waiting, he plays in a dice game and gets on many people's nerves. When he finally gets to act, he ruins his scene, accidentally destroys the set, and tears the skirt of the star of the movie.
Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Ben Turpin, Charlotte Mineau, Leo White, Robert Bolder
Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
Release date: 1915-02-01


A shipowner intends to scuttle his ship on its last voyage to get the insurance money. Charlie, a tramp in love with the owner's daughter, is grabbed by the captain and promises to help him shanghai some seamen. The daughter stows away to follow Charlie. Charlie assists in the galley and attempts to serve food during a gale.
Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Wesley Ruggles, Bud Jamison, Billy Armstrong
Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
Release date: 1915-10-04

A Night Out

After a visit to a pub, Charlie and Ben cause a ruckus at a posh restaurant. Charlie later finds himself in a compromising position at a hotel with the head waiter's wife.
Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Ben Turpin, Bud Jamison, Edna Purviance, Leo White
Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
Release date: 1915-02-15

Enoch Arden

Seamen Enoch Arden returns home after a long absence marooned on a desert island. At home he finds his wife married to another, and though he loves her, he cannot bear to disrupt her current happiness.
Starring: Alfred Paget, Lillian Gish, Wallace Reid, D.W. Griffith, Mildred Harris
Directed by: Christy Cabanne
Release date: 1915-04-08

By the Sea

It is windy at a bathing resort. After fighting with one of the two husbands, Charlie approaches Edna while the two husbands themselves fight over ice cream. Driven away by her husband, Charlie turns to the other's wife.
Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Billy Armstrong, Margie Reiger, Bud Jamison, Edna Purviance
Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
Release date: 1915-04-29


At 10 years old, Owens becomes a ragged orphan when his sainted mother dies. The Conways, who are next door neighbors, take Owen in, but the constant drinking by Jim soon puts Owen on the street. By 17, Owen learns that might is right. By 25, Owen is the leader of his own gang who spend most of their time gambling and drinking. But Marie comes into the gangster area of town and everything changes for Owen as he falls for Marie. But he cannot tell her so, so he comes to her settlement to find education and inspiration. But soon, his old way of life will rise to confront him again.
Starring: James A. Marcus, Maggie Weston, John McCann, Harry McCoy, Rockliffe Fellowes
Directed by: Raoul Walsh
Release date: 1915-09-12

In the Park

A tramp steals a girl's handbag, but when he tries to pick Charlie's pocket loses his cigarettes and matches. He rescues a hot dog man from a thug, but takes a few with his walking stick. When the thief tries to take some of Charlie's sausages, Charlie gets the handbag. The handbag makes its way from person to person to its owner, who is angry with her boyfriend who didn't protect her in the first place. The boyfriend decides to throw himself in the lake in despair, so Charlie helps him out.
Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Leo White, Leona Anderson, Bud Jamison
Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
Release date: 1915-03-18

The Magic Brew

Short animated silent film about a man drinking alcohol.
Directed by: Victor Bergdahl
Release date: 1915-11-01


In order to help her smuggler kinsmen, a sultry gypsy seduces and corrupts an officer of the Civil Guard turning him into a traitor and murderer.
Starring: Geraldine Farrar, Wallace Reid, Pedro de Cordoba, Horace B. Carpenter, William Elmer
Directed by: Cecil B. DeMille
Release date: 1915-10-31

Cartoons On Tour

A father and daughter each enjoy their printed "Grouch Chaser" cartoons, which come to life for the audience. Meanwhile, the daughter is secretly planning to elope.
Directed by: Raoul Barre
Release date: 1915-08-17

Wished on Mabel

Mabel, in the park with her mother, sees her boyfriend and asks him to join them.
Starring: Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle, Mabel Normand, Alice Davenport, Joe Bordeaux, Edgar Kennedy
Directed by: Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle
Release date: 1915-04-19

Alice in Wonderland

A German adaptation of the classic Lewis Carroll story.
Starring: Viola Savoy, Herbert Rice, Harry Marks, Louis Merkle, William Tilden
Directed by: W.W. Young
Release date: 1915-01-15

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