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Sunday Movie - 1pm at Cafe La Villa (BCP Center) - Charlie Chaplin in "The Great Dictator"


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Movie starts at 1pm, and food, drinks and popcorn will be available from Cafe La Villa.  (If you like, you can bring cushions for the hard restaurant chairs, or folding/camp chairs for more comfort.)  There is no admission charge, but we ask for voluntary donations at the end of the movie to support the program and help pay for the video system. 


After the serious films of the last two weeks - the Chinese father-son film "Postmen in the Mountains" and the Leonardo DiCaprio/National Geographic documentary "Before the Flood", I wanted to do a comedy.  So I searched the cracks and crevices of my memories, and of course, scoured the internet for "intelligent" comedies.  I found several good sources with many options for future Sunday afternoon screenings, but Charlie Chaplin's 1940 film, "The Great Dictator," struck me a very appropriate comedy for these times and the recent upheavals on the world's political stages.  Certainly there is darkness in this comedy, but Chaplin's physical and verbal comedy are excellent, and sure to elicit quite a few laughs.  

La Villa and my vision for the film club are part of the "arts" scene here in Boquete, and like the cast of Broadway's hit show "Hamilton" many of my friends and acquaintances in the arts community are concerned about the future environment for ethnic and gender minorities in our society.  If you do a bit of searching, you will find a lot of discussion and writings on the internet about this film and its relevance to current events.  I'm not going to elaborate further on these themes, but suggest that you watch the trailer and read the linked review. 

Description:  After dedicated service in the Great War, a Jewish barber (Charles Chaplin) spends years in an army hospital recovering from his wounds, unaware of the simultaneous rise of fascist dictator Adenoid Hynkel (also Chaplin) and his anti-Semitic policies. When the barber, who bears a remarkable resemblance to Hynkel, returns to his quiet neighborhood, he is stunned by the brutal changes and recklessly joins a beautiful girl (Paulette Goddard) and her neighbors in rebelling.  (The Great Dictator was Chaplin's first "talkie" after his great success in the silent film era.) 

David van Harn
Film Curator   

Link to trailer
Link to review 


Ratings:  8.5/10IMDb, 92%Rotten Tomatoes 

Great Dictator.jpg

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