We talk a lot about how this movie basically hasn’t aged, except it really has. It’s nowhere near as timeless as Chaplin’s silent era films. The soundscape of cinema has changed so much that this film feels positively empty. Technologically, this is to talkies as Ocarina of Time is to 3d video games: a triumph of its day, but perhaps not as graceful as its predecessors. 

Obviously, though, it’s a classic movie. That speech is incredible. But as much as I love the anti-fascist satire, it drags a bit and some sequences are cringe-worthy and awkward in strange ways — like fake German and bad Italian accents. (I’ll admit I laughed, but I felt bad for laughing.) 

I would happily watch this over a lot of modern cinema, but I wouldn’t prefer this to a lot of other Chaplain movies.

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