I've recently been looking at some Chaplin's early films.
My reason for doing so; Chaplin understood that single story elements couldn't progess beyond about a reel of film (10-15 mins depending upon projection speed). So longer films, such as a the two reeler The Immigrant, are in fact two separate sequences, one for each reel. In reel one, The Little Tramp comes to America. In reel two he goes to a restaurant. His romancing of The Girl binds the two together.
The work this is building towards is a manager's conference. I want to stress to managers that having a big meeting, concerning one thing, for a whole hour isn't very useful. And what's more, Chaplin knew this 100 years ago. So stop doing it. Instead have some 'reel changes' in there.
However, for me, it has been a great opportunity to be reminded, YET AGAIN, of how simple the story telling is. And by that I mean how powerfully simple it is.
It has inspired me to think about creating a new silent-style story. Perhaps two people who don't speak each other's language who meet in a foreign city. Add a few laughs and a bit of pathos and jobs a good un.