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thumbnail The Great Dictator (1940, USA)

Classic, Comedy , trackback

Director: Charles Chaplin

Starring: Charles Chaplin, Jack Oakie, Reginald Gardiner, Henry Daniell, Billy Gilbert

Genre: Classic/Comedy

Duration: 125 mins

Rated: G

Summary: The Great Dictator is Charlie Chaplin’s first talking picture. In it he plays both Adenoid Hynkel, the power-mad ruler of Tomania, and a humble Jewish barber suffering under the dictator’s rule. Paulette Goddard, Chaplin’s wife at the time, plays the barber’s beloved; and the rotund comedian Jack Oakie turns in a weirdly accurate burlesque of Mussolini, as a bellowing fellow dictator named Benzino Napaloni, Dictator of Bacteria. Chaplin himself hits one of his highest moments in the amazing sequence where he performs a dance of love with a large inflated globe of the world. Never has the hunger for world domination been more rhapsodically expressed. Chaplin ends the film with the barber’s six-minute speech calling for peace and prophesying a hopeful future for troubled mankind. 125 mins.

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