Chaplin and The Great Dictator




Charlie Chaplin’s birthday occurs on April 16th, but really we can celebrate him anytime we like. Simply the greatest comedian on the big screen ever. Here’s a piece I produced that was broadcast today on WBAI’s Arts Express,, and on Pacifica affiliates across the nation.

Click on the triangle or mp3 link above to listen.

“You must speak.” “I can’t.” “You must, it’s our only hope.”

In the Great Dictator, Charlie Chaplin plays a Jewish barber who is mistaken for the mad dictator of Ptomania, Adenoid Hynkel. Hynkel’s party wears the insignia of the Double Cross. Circumstances force the shy barber to give a speech to millions of Hynkel’s followers. What follows is one of the most extraordinary speeches in cinema history from the most celebrated silent film star ever. Click on the video above to play.