Citizen Kane

Citizen Kane

DVD - 2011
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An American tragedy of a newspaper tycoon, from his humble beginnings to the solitude of his final years. Nominated for nine Academy Awards including Best Picture and Director. Bonus features include commentary by Roger Ebert. 2011 digital transfer: Restored in 4K resolution from original nitrate elements and remastered.

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LPL_MattS Apr 11, 2018

I was curious if this movie would live up to the hype (it is, after all, often named the greatest movie of all time). I'm happy to say it does, especially if you consider how revolutionary much of the camera-work, style, and other techniques used were at the time. If you look into the story behind the scenes, such as how Kane is essentially modeled after William Randolph Herst and all the controversy surrounding its release, I think it makes the film all the more interesting. And while I found Kane himself pretty despicable, the story is a fascinating case study of a man who, for all his opulence and grandeur, is shockingly empty.

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Happy_24
Mar 09, 2018

Crap

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Nursebob
Mar 01, 2018

A scandalous box office flop upon its initial release, co-writer/director Orson Welles’ signature opus is now considered one of the benchmarks in modern American cinema launching the careers of such stars as Agnes Moorehead and Joseph Cotten. If the story is simple enough—mega-billionaire Charles Foster Kane (Welles libelling William Randolph Hearst) spends his entire life amassing material possessions only to make a deathbed discovery that the one thing he truly desired was never for sale—its execution is pure cinema magic. Deep focus techniques render backgrounds and foregrounds with crystal clarity, cameras seem to melt through ceilings and table tops, and B&W matte paintings give Xanadu, Kane’s gaudy Florida estate, the aura of a haunted house. Told in post mortem flashbacks as a roving reporter interviews everyone from Kane's best friend to his business associates, butlers, and a drunken ex-wife (Dorothy Comingore libelling Hearst’s mistress Marion Davies), all of whom offer a different glimpse into the man behind the legend. Big, brash, and unapologetic—much like its creator—and impressively filmed even if the cinematography does occasionally resort to flashy gimmicks and that much anticipated final reveal proves something of a let-down. An interesting pop-psychology foray into what makes a megalomaniac tick (Kane’s brush with politics seems frighteningly contemporary) and the fact that Welles was only twenty-five years old at the time is almost unbelievable.

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Fuzzy_Wuzzy
Dec 02, 2017

It was screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz's loathing and hatred of both William Randolph Hearst & Marion Davies (fuelled by Orson Welles) that brought Citizen Kane to the silver screen.

Though it was a very thinly disguised story about Hearst and Davies, this film's underlying viciousness hit so far below the belt that, not only did it portray Hearst as being a pathetic, lonely, ego-centric hoarder and Davies as a nagging, gold-digging, no-talent singer/actress, but it also revealed to the whole world the word "Rosebud".

"Rosebud", which was the final word uttered by Charles Foster Kane, on his death-bed, wasn't (in reality) the name of a wooden sleigh that he had cherished so much as a child. No. "Rosebud" was actually, in reality, Hearst's pet-name for his mistress's (Marion Davies) clitoris. (It's true. Look it up.)

And, of course, the biggest problem with Citizen Kane was that its whole story was literally based on this one, single word "Rosebud".

With most people (back in 1941, and even now) not knowing the real meaning behind this word (it was a Hollywood in-joke), the viewer is forced to have to endure hearing it being spoken umpteen times throughout the course of this 2-hour picture.

Since I am hip (and, so now, you are, too) that "Rosebud" really meant Davies' clitoris, I can't begin to tell you how tired I got of hearing that word being spoken by actors who were obviously doing a very good job of concealing their smirks whenever they were required to repeat it.

Knowing the truth about the meaning behind "Rosebud", I think that it truly renders Citizen Kane as being one of the nastiest, most vile "revenge-movies" ever made against 2 very real people (who were both still living at the time) that I've ever seen.

I can't think of another movie out there that goes so out of its way to make such a sneering mockery of two people (in this case Hearst & Davies). Its 2 screenwriters (Mankiewicz & Welles) and its director (Welles again) clearly showed how much deep-rooted contempt they had for these 2 people, whom they only slightly knew.

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tinybookworm
Mar 01, 2016

I decided to watch this movie because it is such a famous classic movie and now I see why. It is a really smart interesting story. Orson Welles is amazing in it.

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DanielleH_0
Jun 24, 2015

Alright movie, not my taste, but Kane was a really horrible man.

Chapel_Hill_SarahW Nov 16, 2014

This was the first film I watched in the first of many film classes. It tops the AFI's top 100 movies for lots of reasons: great cinematography, iconic imagery, legendary performance. It's a prime example of what a Hollywood auteur can achieve. You have to watch it so you can finally get all the pop culture references you've been missing.

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Libraryman1_0
May 06, 2014

Touted by the AFI (American FIlm Institute) to be the single greatest American Movie of all time, Citizen Kane spares nothing in the way of it's grand scale epicness. This was the role that defined Orson Welles as a major force in cinema, and this movie is a testiment to his filmmaking genius. From the gloominess of the opening shot of Kane's mansion on a fog swept hillside to the conclusion where you discover what the last word of Kane which was ROSEBUD means. Allegedly, this film was a loosely based biography of famed newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst, and met with major controversy as Hearst had the film blacklisted and blocked from release in several theatres across the U.S. As time has passed though this picture continues to endure and is as thought provoking and classic in nature as it was at the time of it's release 1943.

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Monolith
Aug 24, 2013

A grand, innovative, brilliant film. What an incredibly gifted and talented human being was Orson Welles to have co-written, directed, produced, edited, and starred in such a spectacular epic as this... AT 24 YEARS OLD. Very interesting commentary by Peter Bogdanovich and Roger Ebert on Welles' creative cinematography concepts such as 'deep focus', 'cut-less' sequences, etc. *** A return viewing, and the companion disk's 1996 PBS feature, "The Battle Over Citizen Kane" included in this newer release is not to be missed by those fond of this jewel. I'm amazed at the audacity of Welles with his blatant satirical depiction of Hearst, a man with more money than God, who could've easily made Orson "disappear". Welles was a young man, feeling bulletproof; and he gambled, and was cut off at the knees after locking horns with old powerful money. How sad that the man never got his due recognition in the twilight of his life. FIVE STARS.

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GerryD
Jun 19, 2013

Considered one of the Top 10 classic movies (arguably #1). See my GerryD Lists for other classic movies.

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paul1
Mar 25, 2017

"I think it would be fun to run a newspaper."

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Monolith
Sep 11, 2013

Female reporter: "If you could've found out what 'Rosebud' meant, I bet that would've explained everything." Thompson: "No, I don't think so... no. Mr. Kane was a man who got everything he wanted and then lost it. Maybe 'Rosebud' was something he couldn't get, or something he lost. Anyway, it wouldn't have explained anything... I don't think any word can explain a man's life. No, I guess 'Rosebud' is just a... piece in a jigsaw puzzle... a missing piece..."

blahblahman75947efdjkf Sep 13, 2011

Rosebud......

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DanielleH_0
Jun 24, 2015

The Story of Mr. Charles Foster Kane's life.

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