The deleted nun scene from Modern Times

Reprinted in Robinson 1985: 462-63. Text by Charles Chaplin.

The full moon has changed to a crescent, and from a crescent to a full moon again.
The scene changes to the hospital. Fully recovered [from a breakdown brought on by nut-tightening], the Tramp, who is about to be discharged, is informed that a visitor is waiting to see him in the reception room. He makes his way, laboriously, towards it. When he arrives there, to his surprise, he finds the Gamin, attired as a nun. She is standing, and beside her is a Mother Superior. The Gamin greets him, smiling wistfully. The Tramp looks bewildered. Somehow a barrier has risen up between them. He tries to speak but can say nothing. Smiling sympathetically, she takes his hand. 'You have been very ill,' she says, 'and now you are going out into the world again. Do take care of yourself, and remember I shall always like to hear from you.'
He tries to speak again but, with a gesture, he gives it up. As she smiles, tears well up in her eyes while she holds his hand and he becomes embarrassed; then she stands [sic] as a final gesture that they must part.
The Mother Superior leads them to the door and at the entrance of the hospital she says her last 'goodbye', while the Mother Superior waits in the reception room.
He releases his hand and walks slowly down the hospital steps, she gazing after him. He turns and waves a last farewell and goes towards the city's skyline. She stands immobile, watching him as he fades away.
There is something inscrutable in her expression, something of resignation and regret. She stands as though lost in a dream, watching after him and her spirit goes with him, for out of herself the ghost of the Gamin appears and runs rampant down the hospital steps, dancing and circling around him, but he does not see her, he walks alone.
She is standing on the hospital steps. She is awakened from her revelry [reverie?] by a light touch, the hand of the Mother Superior. She starts, then turns and smiles wistfully at the kindly old face and together they depart into the portals of the hospital again. FADE OUT


Text retyped by David A. Gerstein