8.5/10
142,369
199 user 115 critic

The Great Dictator (1940)

Approved | | Comedy, Drama, War | 7 March 1941 (USA)
Trailer
1:31 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Dictator Adenoid Hynkel tries to expand his empire while a poor Jewish barber tries to avoid persecution from Hynkel's regime.

Director:

Writer:

Reviews
Popularity
2,741 ( 114)
Top Rated Movies #54 | Nominated for 5 Oscars. Another 5 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

City Lights (1931)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

With the aid of a wealthy erratic tippler, a dewy-eyed tramp who has fallen in love with a sightless flower girl accumulates money to be able to help her medically.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Virginia Cherrill, Florence Lee
Citizen Kane (1941)
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

Following the death of a publishing tycoon, news reporters scramble to discover the meaning of his final utterance.

Director: Orson Welles
Stars: Orson Welles, Joseph Cotten, Dorothy Comingore
Sunset Blvd. (1950)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A hack screenwriter writes a screenplay for a former silent-film star who has faded into Hollywood obscurity.

Director: Billy Wilder
Stars: William Holden, Gloria Swanson, Erich von Stroheim
The Circus (1928)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

The Tramp finds work and the girl of his dreams at a circus.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Merna Kennedy, Al Ernest Garcia
Rear Window (1954)
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A wheelchair-bound photographer spies on his neighbours from his apartment window and becomes convinced one of them has committed murder.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: James Stewart, Grace Kelly, Wendell Corey
Casablanca (1942)
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

In Casablanca, Morocco in December 1941, a cynical American expatriate meets a former lover, with unforeseen complications.

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, Paul Henreid
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A filmmaker recalls his childhood, when he fell in love with the movies at his village's theater and formed a deep friendship with the theater's projectionist.

Director: Giuseppe Tornatore
Stars: Philippe Noiret, Enzo Cannavale, Antonella Attili
Psycho (1960)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A Phoenix secretary embezzles $40,000 from her employer's client, goes on the run, and checks into a remote motel run by a young man under the domination of his mother.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

In post-war Italy, a working-class man's bicycle is stolen. He and his son set out to find it.

Director: Vittorio De Sica
Stars: Lamberto Maggiorani, Enzo Staiola, Lianella Carell
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

A silent film production company and cast make a difficult transition to sound.

Directors: Stanley Donen, Gene Kelly
Stars: Gene Kelly, Donald O'Connor, Debbie Reynolds
Limelight (1952)
Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A fading comedian and a suicidally despondent ballet dancer must look to each other to find meaning and hope in their lives.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Claire Bloom, Nigel Bruce
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

After refusing to attack an enemy position, a general accuses the soldiers of cowardice and their commanding officer must defend them.

Director: Stanley Kubrick
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Ralph Meeker, Adolphe Menjou
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Napaloni - Dictator of Bacteria
...
...
...
Herring
...
Madame Napaloni
...
Bacterian Ambassador (as Carter De Haven)
...
Hannah
Maurice Moscovitch ...
Mr. Jaeckel (as Maurice Moscovich)
...
Mrs. Jaeckel
...
Mr. Mann
Paul Weigel ...
Mr. Agar
...
Barber's Customer
Esther Michelson ...
Jewish Woman
...
Storm Trooper Stealing Fruit
Edit

Storyline

Twenty years after the end of WWI in which the nation of Tomainia was on the losing side, Adenoid Hynkel has risen to power as the ruthless dictator of the country. He believes in a pure Aryan state, and the decimation of the Jews. This situation is unknown to a simple Jewish-Tomainian barber who has since been hospitalized the result of a WWI battle. Upon his release, the barber, who had been suffering from memory loss about the war, is shown the new persecuted life of the Jews by many living in the Jewish ghetto, including a washerwoman named Hannah, with whom he begins a relationship. The barber is ultimately spared such persecution by Commander Schultz, who he saved in that WWI battle. The lives of all Jews in Tomainia are eventually spared with a policy shift by Hynkel himself, who is doing so for ulterior motives. But those motives include a want for world domination, starting with the invasion of neighboring Osterlich, which may be threatened by Benzino Napaloni, the dictator ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Once again - the whole world laughs! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

7 March 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Dictator  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Charles Chaplin cast his wife Paulette Goddard as the female lead, playing a cleaner. He insisted that she scrub the floor of the whole set only for her to refuse. Chaplin stopped filming until she agreed to do so. (Their relationship was on the rocks at this stage, which could explain his treatment of her.) See more »

Goofs

(at around 1h 5 mins) When the barber slides into the basement window while evading the stormtrooper, his hat falls off onto the street. In the next shot, he is wearing his hat again. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Title Cards: Note, any resemblance between Hynkle the Dictator and the Jewish Barber is purely co-incidental.
Title Cards: This is a story of a period between two World Wars - an interim in which Insanity cut loose. Liberty took a nose dive, and Humanity was kicked around somewhat.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film is obviously a satire on Adolf Hitler, represented by Adenoid Hynkel, and its story is based on Hynkel looking exactly like "a Jewish barber": both are played by Charles Chaplin. But it begins with a notice: "Any resemblance between Hynkel the dictator and the Jewish barber is purely co-incidental". See more »


Soundtracks

Hungarian Dance No. 5
(uncredited)
Written by Johannes Brahms
Played on the radio during the shaving scene
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Immortal classic movie with dual character for Chaplin as barber Jew and Dictator Hynkel
3 March 2009 | by See all my reviews

This ingenious and innovate comedy packs many moments priceless and great sense of pace, though overlong. Chaplin's satire with several classics scenes , he has dual role as a Jewish barber and dictator Hynkel, an offensive portrayal of Hitler . Then the barber is mistaken for the Hitlerian tyrant and happen bemusing events. Funny and extraordinaries acting of all casting, as the co-stars Jack Oakie as Napolini(Mussolini-alike), Henry Daniel as Gasbstich(Himmler-alike) and Billy Gilbert as Herring( Goering). Chaplin's first spoken film is brilliantly photographed by Karl Struss.This splendid film contains numerous amusing scenes, the funniest are the following : 1) The one when during the WWI the barber-soldier along with a co-pilot are flying in a turned plane without aware 2)Dictator Adenoid Hynkel doing overacting speeches including a twisted microphone 3)Hynkel playing with an enormous balloon of the world 4)The Jew-barber shaving a man fitting to Hungarian Dance number 5 of Brahms 5) when Hynkel and Napolini each try to keep his body higher than other in a barber's chair; among them.

Hitler banned movie exhibition to the Germans due to its satire of him, and put him in his death list after his proposed conquest of America.The movie is co-starred by Paulette Goddard, third of his four wives , they were married in 1936, although no announcement of the marriage was made later, one time finished The Great Dictator.The picture was released in 1940, when Chaplin had survived a moral scandal by a paternity suit but a brush with the House of Un-American Activities was the signal for the USA to refuse him re-entry from Britain and he fled to Switzerland.


10 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Chaplin's worst? alexbrownson
charlie chaplin's speech at the end neongod64
is he talking German scarecrow2022
The third act was kind of shaky cartesianthought
What happened after the ending? cartesianthought
Discuss The Great Dictator (1940) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?