Those who find their way into the fine Arts this week will find as the chief bit of amusement a French satire on modern dictators. "Charlemagne" tells the story of a stevedore on a private yacht whose owners are escaping from their responsibility for producing a play that is a fiasco.
There are seven men in all, one the wealthy husband of the leading actress of the piece. Somewhere in the tropics the yacht sinks, and the party is rowed to a desert island by the stevedore. HE is the only real man of the bunch, and after being ordered about by all the others, determines to become their dictator.
He is soon installed as ruler, takes the actress as his queen, attempts to govern, and is summarily robbed of the fruits of his superiority when they are rescued by an airplane. The remainder of the show is irrelevant and rather tedious.
While "Charlemagne" has some witty lines, and is pleasant enough diversion, one cannot help remembering that Barrie wrote a masterful play in "The Admirable Crichton," and that the French author of "Charlemagne" should have known better than to try to improve on the greatest writer of whimsy the stage has known.
The other attractions on the program are more educational than stimulating. A "short" on animal growth is happily offset by an excellent Mickey Mouse, while the newsreel is less stereotyped than usual. This week's program at the Fine Arts is not up to par; but the season is till young, and there is ample time for improvement.