Maybe, the most popular scene of the Charlie Chaplin’s movie “The Great Dictator” is the final speech that is a wonderful hymn to peace and hope for all generations, for all eternity. But the all movie is a masterpiece in the history of the cinema, not only because its cinematographic qualities but also because of it’s message in the time he was done (1940). Charlie Chaplin, born in Europe, knew that freedom and democracy are in danger in his father-continent. The times are of darkness with the rise of totalitarian regimes in the old world and between this regimes, the most dangerous of all is known as nazism. In a attempt of wake-up the american people and politicians to the nazi danger, Chaplin decides to tell a story of a dictator (imitation of Hitler) and a jew barber in a movie that is a warning to the world with the amazing achievement of make laugh without people forget that the mainly subject of the film is so serious and dramatic.
In this marvelous movie, the most symbolical scene and one of my favorites is the global scene dance. The scene is simply astonishing and resumes all the purposes of the movie. With irony and comedy, Chaplin gives us one of the most tragic moments in cinema history. Tragic? Yes. Tragic for us, for all those that lived after the II World War and discovered the brutal images of the concentration camps. Of course, in the time the movie premiered at the cinemas, no one could know and many few could only imagine what was happening in Europe. Maybe, even Chaplin didn’t knew it. But now when we see the scene, I bet no one can dissociate the dramatic and crying music of violins from the horror that allied soldiers would discover some years later. Is amazing how premonitory the scene is. Charlie Chaplin make us laugh with the madness of the dictator who dream to rule the world; but at same time make us go deep on sadness because we know what that scene real means. A symbolic image of a world soon destroyed by a mad man.
But if the movie is a warning to people lived in 1940, in fact it can be used to all generations. And how actual it is now. The ghosts of far-right are rising again in Europe. What is happening now is a kind of a copy in a minor degree of the 30’s of the last century. A economical crisis not so strong as the 1929 crash, populists saviors that promise a brilliant future if each country abandon immigrants and give force to the nationalism, less tolerance, more hate, less respect, more ignorance. Things in Europe are not good and I’m not talking on economics. Instead of unite, people is tearing apart because of far-right movements. Extremism is rising in countries like France, Hungary, Austria or Netherlands. They say to be more moderate but we know is not true. They are always far-right and there’s no tolerance on that. The worst thing, is that many young people are supporting these xenophobe movements. Is true that they didn’t lived the times of agony in Europe but that is no a excuse to live in ignorance or refuse to see the true. What kind of Europe we will have in the future if new generations let to be guided by racists and dividers that don’t accept the actual Europe or don’t recognize the history of this continent? I don’t believe that the road of this extremism will be a war like happened in 1939 but it will be always bad if radicals continue to conquer popularity in Europe. That’s why this global scene dance is a kind of premonition also for the present times. The question is: What choice we are going to do? The happiness given by the comedy of a scene of a Hitler-Hinkel dancing in a funny way or the sadness of the violins announcing the tragedy?