At the end of the 30s when most of Europe and the U.S. didn’t take the Nazi threat seriously, Chaplin bravely went into production on this anti-Hitler satire. The actor-director plays a dual role: the despotic ruler of Tomainia Adenoid Hynkel and an amnesiac Jewish butcher returned from WWI’s trenches. Add a bit of mistaken identity and an iconic globe-balloon ballet, you have a satire so effective that Hitler, Mussolini, and Franco all banned it. Fascinating fascism indeed.
The Great Dictator
Directed by Charlie Chaplin