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Year:
1941
Country:
USA
Genre:
Drama, Mystery
IMDB rating:
8.4
Director:
Orson Welles

 

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Joseph Cotten as Jedediah Leland
Dorothy Comingore as Susan Alexander Kane
Agnes Moorehead as Mary Kane
Ruth Warrick as Emily Monroe Norton Kane
Ray Collins as James W. Gettys
Erskine Sanford as Herbert Carter
Everett Sloane as Mr. Bernstein
William Alland as Jerry Thompson
Paul Stewart as Raymond
George Coulouris as Walter Parks Thatcher
Fortunio Bonanova as Signor Matiste
Gus Schilling as The Headwaiter
Philip Van Zandt as Mr. Rawlston
Georgia Backus as Bertha Anderson
Citizen Kane Storyline: A group of reporters are trying to decipher the last word ever spoken by Charles Foster Kane, the millionaire newspaper tycoon: "Rosebud." The film begins with a news reel detailing Kane's life for the masses, and then from there, we are shown flashbacks from Kane's life. As the reporters investigate further, the viewers see a display of a fascinating man's rise to fame, and how he eventually fell off the top of the world.
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iPhone 320x234 px 296 Mb h264 346 Kbps mp4 Download
Reviews
It's more than just a great looking movie.
What makes a great film? In my opinion it is the following:

#1.Photography (most important because it IS a film. If it's shot badly, then your skrood.) NOTE: I consider the best filmmakers to be great cinematographers first, such as Stanley Kubrick, Steven Spielberg, Etc.

#2. Directing/Editing (I lump the two together because the director really edits what is going on while it's being filmed, then finishes the process in the cutting room)

#3. Acting (If we can't believe the people, we've lost it. But, bad acting can be corrected in the cutting room, and with multiple takes).

#4. Sound and Music (If what we hear doesn't fit, the movie might as well be silent).

Now, this is all well and good for a movie that tells a great story. Add to that a serious dose of style, ingenuity, and passion, all of which can be found in each frame of Citizen Kane.

Citizen Kane isn't just a great movie with great characters, a great cast, great music from Bernard Herrmann or great photography. At the time of its creation it was like a cannon shot from the camp of RKO at the media moguls who were dominating the minds of people at the time.

This message was not only important to the American public who had a right to objective journalism, but also because we were seeing the affects of divisiveness over the airwaves thanks to Hitler, and the power that comes from shaping the perceptions of the masses needed to be acknowledged from a semi-fictional standpoint, and Wells did it with so much energy and style you can't help but admire this work even 60+ years later. Citizen Kane shook the rafters of the media, and even though they played it down, everybody at the time was feeling the quake.

Above all else, Citizen Kane tells the story of a man who is a victim of his own success, a story that can never be told enough.

When you see Citizen Kane, you're not just watching a well made film, you're watching a piece of art, a piece of history, and a timeless story of how power corrupts.

Absolutely.
2005-12-12
See it for what it is
OK look, let me settle something between those who love and hate this film. A lot of people hail this film because it is technically brilliant and ground breaking. Director Orson Welles did a lot of things visually that no one had ever done before. Nearly every film maker was in some way influenced by this movie. This movie also had a great impact in its time. The title character was based on media giant William Randolph Hearst. He was that generations Donald Trump. He opposed this film so much he did everything in its power to stop its release and almost succeeded. Lastly this film contains some of the strongest and most common themes in literature; Life versus death. It is for these reasons why this film is so revered.

On the contrary people who hate this film mainly complain that it is boring. Which is a legitimate complaint. The story is slow compared to today's standards, and there is no real Hearst character alive today in which to relate. So yes, the story on the surface is outdated. However, this does not make it a bad movie. It was not made as a Matrix/Star Wars type of movie which can be enjoyed even at surface level. This is not pure entertainment. Remember there is more to film than storytelling. This film was designed to be cinematically beautiful and to tell a basic story of love and redemption. There is much more to the story than the thinly veiled attack on Hearst, one just needs to look deeper. Look at Shakespeare or Hawthorne for example, their literary works are universally loved. Yet, many people blow them off because they refuse to look past the outdated language into the beautiful prose and simple ubiquitous themes. Just because something is outdated does not mean it lacks worth in today's world.

My advice to those who did not like it the first time or have not seen it yet is simple. Watch it again for what it is. Do not expect to be on the edge of your seat for two hours. Watch it for the cinematography that alone makes this film among the best (I don't agree with AFI's number one ranking but I think it still ranks high). Look deeper into the story and try to connect with it on some level. At the very least appreciate how influential this film was and where the industry would be without it. If you can do this, then maybe some of the naysayers will change their minds. Again, you do not have to love Citizen Kane, but at least respect it for what it is.
2004-04-21
Rate According To Your True Feelings.
Yes, this title is a classic and we can all agree that it has been critically acclaimed by many to be a masterpiece. This movie pops up in so many lists of the greatest movies of all time that watching it at least once in your lifetime becomes a must. So I prepared myself for at the least a good movie. Is it a good movie? Well, yes and no.

See, it depends on why you are watching movies in the first place and where you derive pleasure from. For me watching movies is a way of entertainment and enjoyment, I want to have fun, I want to laugh, I want to cry, I want to think, I want to be engaged, I want to guess what is going to happen, I want characters that I can relate to and be attached to. Now all those things don't mean that I want MINDLESS fun,I do prefer intelligent plot with great characters and development but I want the movie to incorporate entertainment value as well. Citizen Kane was a character study, it was like an assignment for my university where I had to critically evaluate the title to get a good grade.

Yes, cinematography was amazing and to think it was a movie from 1941 it is just jaw dropping. Yes, the character of Kane was complex and it was a good character study. Yes, the symbolic nature of "Rosebud" and what it represents was brilliantly done, especially when we see that Kane's romantic life with his women was screwed up. But all those things are meaningless to me when I don't enjoy the movie and I am ready to die from boredom. I literally forced myself to not fall asleep, all the time I was thinking "There must be something wrong with me, this is the greatest film of all time. Get your sh*t together, wake up and pay attention. This is awesome, right?". At some points I even thought that I must be stupid for not liking this film, but if people choose to name me stupid I don't care, at least I am honest with my feelings. What matters is that I consider myself to be fairly intelligent and I didn't see the appeal of this movie unless you are watching this for critical purposes.

Now why this movie is in the top 250 and is considered a classic? That's probably because of the technical aspects of the movie and in this sense it might be a masterpiece, but I just can't see people enjoying this so much to have it so highly rated because of the entertainment factor.
2015-03-17
it took years for its reputation to grow
The comment that began: It's a difficult undertaking for someone of my generation to watch a film like CITIZEN KANE. That statement could be made by anyone for the last 30-40 years. I came to it the exact same way, aware of its reputation. But I saw it at a revival theatre 37 years ago. I was 18 when the Godfather and Cabaret were Oscar noms. CK was a box office flop, the rep grew 15-20 years later by the French critics of the early 60s- THEY could have said the same thing: "It's a difficult undertaking for someone of my generation to watch a film like CITIZEN KANE." Instead as an older citizen I see more of a dismissive attitude twd b/w films by 'today's generation' which has little to do with the greatness of CK itself. Alas there is nothing more self limiting than being modern.
2009-11-21
Gaudy Reputation, But a Dull Film
I really can't find anything in "Citizen Kane" worth liking. Do I see what the big fuss is about? Sure. And it is one of the best looking and most well made film of the 40s (from what I've seen. I admittedly don't watch many films from the 40s, because of bad experiences with "great" films such as this). "Citizen Kane" is a monumental achievement because of some of the technical aspects. I have no reason to watch "Citizen Kane" ever again though. I don't particularly like any of the acting, and the story is just dull to me. I don't watch movies for editing, camera work, lighting or technical achievements. Those aspects of filmmaking certainly can greatly help or hurt a film, but without a good script, and without good acting, you just have a good-looking movie. That's the case with "Citizen Kane." Supremely directed and extremely well crafted for its time, but I just didn't care for the man or the exposition of most scenes.

A lot of directors can make a good-looking film, and a lot have. The remake of "All the King's Men" is wonderfully shot, but the movie is a complete mess that is just butchered by the director (most noticeably the atrocious casting and the shampoo commercial-esque editing). "All the King's Men" does have a good performance from Penn, but that's about it. Other than that? It is a terrible movie. "Citizen Kane" is not that bad and Welles' direction is far better, but I think it's a similar case were two movies look a lot better than anything that's happening between the characters, or within the story. The characters might be exquisitely framed, but I just didn't care what they had to say.

It is masterfully made for its time and it is a greatly influential film. That's what it is remembered for and what it was always be remembered for. Rosebud comes second. If you rate a movie purely on direction, then you probably give it a high score. If you don't, then your taste will dictate how effective it was. For me, "Citizen Kane" is another major disappointment to add to the heap of "disappointing classics."
2010-08-11
Best sleep of my life !
OK so you've watched the movie and saw that its terrible and wanted to see what other people think or you're reading reviews before you watch it and you find people giving it 10 stars for the saw called amazing "cinematography" well its not only you who hated this movie i hate it too as well as many others this movie is completely dull and boring !!! I wasted 2 hours of my life, i read reviews before i watched it and saw that some people hated it, i slept when i came to watch it the first time so i said maybe i was tired that day but i gotta admit i slept really good while the movie was still running. Next day i thought that i maybe should watch it again but it was still boring i mean how more pathetic can a movie be !! This movie should never be on the top !! It should be on top of the IMDb's Bottom 100 list !! I regret watching this movie, if you haven't watched it yet i advice you NOT to watch it ! its PATHETIC !
2011-11-18
All That Ballyhoo!
On the Criterion Collection DVD of Orson Welles' classic "Citizen Kane" there is an original theatrical trailer where Welles cleverly advertises the film by introducing us to the cast including the chorus girls, whom he refers to as some nice ballyhoo. That pretty much sums up my opinion of the often over analyzed film that always shows up at the top of the list of greatest films ever made. Even though this was the first time I sat down to watch the film as a whole, I knew everything about it from studying it in film class and from the countless number of essays, homages, and parodies that have come down the pike over the years. It seems impossible now to judge the film against a blank slate, but with great ballyhoo comes great scrutiny.

Released in 1941 by RKO as a Mercury Theater Production, "Citizen Kane" is the tale of an influential and shockingly wealthy newspaper tycoon (Welles) inspired by the life of William Randolph Hearst. The story follows the investigation into the origins of "Rosebud"-the mysterious word Kane utters on his deathbed. Following newsreel footage announcing Kane's death, we are then thrust into a series of flashbacks through interviews with various people who knew Kane that reveal the nature of his character.

From a technical standpoint, Welles' film is as innovative and engrossing today as it was yesterday. Every single piece of cinematic trickery, every dissolve, every long tracking shot, every seamless edit, every play with chronology, every special effect is perfect. Welles was audacious and inventive with his art, and it is for these technical aspects that "Citizen Kane" will always stand the test of time.

However, the story of "Citizen Kane" remains cold and distant. I didn't instantly connect with the characters and the plot the way I did with other classics from the period like "Casablanca" or "The Third Man" or even more recently, "There Will Be Blood." Often, the supporting players over-act, and the flashbacks are tedious (especially the one detailing Kane's second marriage) or emotionless (like the scene showing Kane's snow covered childhood). There's a certain smug arrogance to the whole production that makes it seem like perhaps Welles was secretly making a comedy. It leaves one wondering how it would've come across had Welles actually been allowed to do a straight up biopic of Hearst.

Is it any wonder that so many critics today hail this as THE all time great? Much of today's cinema is geared towards style and technique over substance, and way back in 1941, Welles was the first to author this very modern brand of cinema where the art is not in the story but how it is told and shown to the audience. His "Citizen Kane" is technically rich, layered, and enthralling but narratively vapid. Did I ever really care about Kane or Rosebud? No, but it was fascinating to watch. It's some very nice ballyhoo indeed.
2008-05-05
Citizen Kane
Citizen Kane was an incredible film. I was sort of mesmermized by it, more so the camera work with the unusual angles than with the story. I liked the way Orson Welles played with time and the beginning was really the end and the film was told through flashbacks which were really told by different characters. There were a few grand, grand scenes that I really enjoyed-the party at the newspaper with the dancers, ice sculptures, and the rousing song. I was overwhelmed by the scene when Charles Kane was giving his campaign speech. I did start to lose interest in the story somewhere in the middle and really felt no sympathy connection with Charles Kane. Maybe I wasn't supposed to connect with him, as his character was larger than life and because we learn about him through others recollection of him, making him mysterious and unknown. We can only infer from his last word that he was forever impacted by being torn from a place that he held such dear memories of. This film made you realize that you were looking at a film and not someone's real story.
2009-11-10
A Good Film to Watch.
It's important for all people to explore the world and pursue their dreams and goals for themselves. It's important for people to be happy with their lives and not force people to help them become successful. Money, greed, and selfishness don't bring happiness to someone that was forced to get into a career at an early age or of any age at all. It's important for a person to enjoy their childhood while looking ahead towards a brighter, happy future.

The actor's portrayal of Kane and his colleagues was shown very well throughout the film. The juxtaposition of the flashbacks and the present time research of Kane's life were used well and made the plot flow through fast and easy for the viewers to understand what was happening in the film. The news reel and the voice narration of providing the back story of Kane's life and death was effective to set up the main idea that the viewers are going to see and find more information about Kane's life and what the meaning of the last word that Kane said at his deathbed was all about. The use of framing and cinematography was used well throughout the film. The lighting on the back of the actors and the front of the actors was really dramatic, sharp in focus in the depth of field, and kept people guessing what was going on inside their minds and the emotions that they're feeling at the present time as Kane and the reporter are searching for success. In other scenes, the use of lighting was soft and sometimes balanced through the film. The double exposures in some parts of the film were used well.

Overall, it's a good film to watch. It has a great moral story that everybody should follow in their lives.
2009-10-13
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