Charlie Chaplin’s Modern Times demonstrates great use of repetition, unity and a great deal of expectations being met or not met at all.
Throughout the film Charlie perpetually fails at any job he obtains. The film starts by demonstrating Charlie as a employee in an assembly line in a factory twisting screws. This motion of twisting becomes extremely repetitive when Charlie starts twisting anything remotely close to the size of the tools he uses (i.e buttons, a fire hydrant, etc). However, the main source of repetition in the film is the failure of Charlie to obtain a steady job due to his very quirky and clumsy behavior.
Later on in the film Charlie meets a young lady who he decides to help with the intention in returning to jail (ironically where he feels comfortable and safe). Here the audience expects the sense that Charlie and this women will end up together finally in a nice home with steady jobs. As the film unfolds there is various occurences where they become stable both as members of society and once again fail to fit in.
Towards the end of the film Charlie appears to be an amazing entertainer along with his partner who stars as the lead dancer. Once Charlie is offered a steady position as a singer, his partner has been search and found by the police which cause Charlie to once again have to run away in order to save his partner. There this sense of disunity comes into play where the audience thinks what would’ve happened if both would’ve worked, save money, bought a home and had the life they somewhat live in the store that Charlie worked as a night watchmen.
However, unity comes back as they both stay together and continue to fight through modern times. Therefore this recurring failure motif can be symtomatic in the sense that at the end what is more important? For them to stay together and continue through the struggles together or become stable as an individual at the cost of losing one another?