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Out of the Past

February 09, 1992

Re "A Big Picture on the Little Tramp" (Jan. 26): Richard Attenborough errs on the side of extravagant theorizing when he compares the familiarity to audiences of Robert Downey Jr. to that of Ben Kingsley when he made "Gandhi." Anyone who has bought more than 20 movie tickets in the past two years would recognize Downey at once.

Ironically, given the impatience with cultural history that marks much of today's youthful target audience, they would be more likely to recognize Downey than Chaplin himself.

JULIAN FINCH

Los Angeles

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