A King in New York (1957)
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With A King in New York, Chaplin lampoons the country that sent him into exile (from the safe confines of Shepperton Studios), playing the title monarch ousted by a revolution sparked by the corruption of his ministers. He takes aim at contemporary (1950s) American culture, especially movies and TV, its dedication to capitalism and advertising, and in the last act, at the very McCarthyism that made him leave the U.S. There are two things Chaplin kept from his silent films when he moves to talkies (I mean, aside from the physical comedy). One is the characters' ability to look into camera, theatrical asides not often afforded people in film. The other is a structure built on set pieces that fit a theme or premise. I feel it more than usual in this one, but it's all used to good effect, lulling us into a false sense of security with the comedy upfront, and the more political matter in the back. Of particular note is the King's touching relationship to a 10-year-old communist played by Chaplin's own son Michael. I admit to both laughing out loud and getting fer-klempt over the course of the film, so it is the full package, witty satire with a streak of slapstick. More people should be aware of it.
The scene starting in the elevator was incredible. One of Chaplin's best!
Definitely not one of Chaplin's best in my opinion.
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In 4 official lists
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This movie ranks #17 in François Truffaut's The Films in My Life
This movie ranks #418 in Jonathan Rosenbaum's Essential Cinema
This movie ranks #543 in Cahiers du Cinéma's Annual Top 10 Lists
This movie ranks #616 in TSPDT's 1,000 Greatest Films: 1001-2000