2 June 2010

Quote of the day, yay!

Charles Chaplin in The Great Dictator (1940)

3 Comments:

Blogger J. Lee said...

I read an interesting analysis (I can't remember the author,) of this scene that draws attention to the way Chaplin starts off humbly and softly spoken, but by the end of the speech, has become passionate and even aggressive...mirroring the movements/expression of the original dictator himself. It's disturbing then, to see/hear the crowd's applause, which is the exact sound byte that's used earlier in the film to represent the enchanted masses. I guess the reading implies that in the scene, one form of mass coersion has been replaced with another, which makes for an unsettling moral tale. Sorry! That was a bit of a ramble, but I thought you might appreciate x

02 June, 2010 16:07  
Blogger Eleanor said...

yes yes yes !! i appreciate very much miss lee. super interesting reading. it's great to note this cause it's quite right indeed - masses are masses whatever side, dictators are dictators... and ramble is my middle name ;) x

03 June, 2010 04:51  
Blogger doctork said...

I disagree. I think this speech lacks power because it lacks fear. There is no one to rail against, no enemy. That is what 'dictators' use to inflame the 'masses', so this is not the same.

I think it shows just why we don't live in the utopian society Chaplin is describing. It's because human nature demands something to fight against, to struggle with, to survive despite. If it was as simplistic as 'masses are masses' we would already be living in an humanitarian utopia thanks to people like Jesus, Ghandhi or Martin Luther King.

05 June, 2010 12:08  

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