Saturday, March 23, 2013

Criterion on Hulu: The Great Dictator (1940)

The Great Dictator movie poster
The Great Dictator (1940) – Written and Directed by Charlie Chaplin; Cinematography by Roland H. Totheroh and Karl Struss; Starring Charlie Chaplin, Paulette Goddard, Jack Oakie, Billy Gilbert, Reginald Gardiner, Henry Daniell, Maurice Moscovich, Emma Dunn, Bernard Gorcey, Paul Weigel, Chester Conklin, Grace Hayle and Carter DeHaven.

By Kenny Howell

Very underrated Chaplin film about a dictator, Adenoid Hynkel, and a barber who bears a striking resemblance to him.

The target is Nazi Germany, of course, and Chaplin goes for the throat. Although he tussled with authority in previous films, this one is more daring. The movie still also feels like a Chaplin movie with elaborate scenes set up with great comedic payoff. The speech at the end will go viral every once in awhile, and it is a fine piece of writing. 

The Great Dictator is now streaming on Hulu.

Rating: ****

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