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8.1
/10
1,347 Ratings

Monsieur Verdoux

Directed by Charlie Chaplin
United States, 1947
Comedy, Crime, Drama

Synopsis

Monsieur Verdoux, a Parisian family man, loses his job as a bank clerk. In order to support his wife and child, he devises a plan to woo and marry rich widows, then murder them for their money. His scheme works until his 14th victim, the loud-mouthed Annabella Bonheur, proves impossible to kill.

Our take

A controversial entry in Chaplin’s 75-year career, this Paris-set comedy—attacked at the time for being utterly unsentimental—is a dark, entertaining movie about money, marriage, and murder. Based on an idea by Orson Welles, Monsieur Verdoux presents Chaplin outside of his signature Tramp role.

Monsieur Verdoux Directed by Charlie Chaplin
As the cold war has become the war on terror, and yesterday’s atom bombs today’s drones, Verdoux continues to haunt us and make us laugh. It’s as dated as its time, yet as fresh as today’s headlines.
March 29, 2013
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This feeling of internal conflict, the friction found between like and self-doubt, ultimately poses the film’s central question: What constitutes morally acceptable behavior in a world where injustice is universal? The point of Verdoux’s conspicuously charming personality isn’t so much to make him appealing as it is to engage critically with that kind of appeal…
March 28, 2013
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The sharpest and funniest of Chaplin’s audacious late films, it is also the most complex: a comic attack on the middle-class values of success and respectability that crosses from gallows humor into moral inquiry, a film that exposes its protagonist even as it encourages its audience to laugh with him.
March 27, 2013
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