Wednesday May 28 01:00 PM
Doris Duke Theatre
About the Film:
Directed by Charlie Chaplin. 1947. USA. 124 mins.
Charlie Chaplin’s Monsieur Verdoux is widely considered one of his best works, and his most political. Chaplin immodestly proclaimed it “the cleverest, most brilliant film of my career.” Nominated for the 1948 Academy Award® for Best Screenplay, and originating from a true story, this self-described “comedy of murders” was based on an idea by Orson Welles, which Chaplin reportedly bought for $5,000 in a refusal to be directed by anyone but himself. Verdoux stars Chaplin as the mustachioed bluebeard in beret and cravat whose charming manners and good looks cloak a deep-seated, murderous hatred, festering since the loss of his longstanding job as a bank clerk. Plagued with censorship problems early on, and temporarily pulled from distribution in the U.S. at the height of the Cold War Hollywood witch hunts, Verdoux was initially vilified for its risqué societal critique.