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Orson Welles first feature film -- which he directed, produced, and co-wrote, as well as playing the title role -- proved to be his most important and influential work, a ground-breaking drama loosely based on the life of William Randolph Hearst which is frequently cited as the finest American film ever made. Aging newspaper magnate Charles Foster Kane (Orson Welles) dies in his sprawling Florida estate after uttering a single, enigmatic final word -- "Rosebud" -- and newsreel producer Rawlston (Phil Van Zandt) sends reporter Jerry Thompson (William Alland) out with the assignment of uncovering the meaning behind the great man's dying thought. As Thompson interviews Kane's friends, family, and associates, we learn the facts of Kane's eventful and ultimately tragic life: his abandonment by his parents (Agnes Moorehead and Harry Shannon) after he becomes the heir to a silver mine; his angry conflicts with his guardian, master financier Walter Parks Thatcher (George Coulouris); his impulsive decision that "it would be fun to run a newspaper" with the help of school chum Jedediah Leland (Joseph Cotten) and loyal assistant Mr. Bernstein (Everett Sloane); his rise from scandal sheet publisher to the owner of America's largest and most influential newspaper chain; his marriage to socially prominent Emily Norton (Ruth Warrick), whose uncle is the President of the United States; Kane's ambitious bid for public office, which is dashed along with his marriage when his opponent, corrupt political boss Jim Gettys (Ray Collins), reveals that Kane is having an affair with aspiring vocalist Susan Alexander (Dorothy Comingore); Kane's vain attempts to promote second wife Alexander as an opera star; and his final, self-imposed exile to a massive and never-completed pleasure palace called Xanadu. While Citizen Kane was a film full of distinguished debuts -- along with Welles, it was the first feature for Joseph Cotten, Everett Sloane, Ray Collins, Agnes Moorehead, and Ruth Warrick -- the only Academy Award it received was for Best Original Screenplay, for which Welles shared credit with veteran screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz.
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Cast & Crew
|Orson Welles||Charles Foster Kane|
|Joseph Cotten||Jedediah Leland|
|Everett Sloane||Mr. Bernstein|
|Dorothy Comingore||Susan Alexander|
|Ray Collins||Boss Jim Gettys|
|Ruth Warrick||Emily Norton Kane|
|George Coulouris||Walter Parks Thatcher|
|Buddy Swan||Kane as Child|
|Agnes Moorehead||Kane's Mother|
|Harry Shannon||Kane's Father|
|Sonny Bupp||Kane III|
|Erskine Sanford||Herbert Carter|
|William Alland||Jerry Thompson|
|Philip Van Zandt||Mr. Rawlston|
|Fortunio Bonanova||Signor Matiste|
|Pedro de Cordoba||Kane senior|
|Edmund Cobb||Enquirer Reporter|
|Herbert Corthell||City Editor|
|Arthur Kay||Orchestra Leader|
|Ellen Lowe||Miss Townsend|
|Irving Mitchell||Dr. Corey|
|Tudor Williams||Chorus Master|
|Linwood G. Dunn||Special Effects|
|Perry Ferguson||Art Director|
|Bernard Herrmann||Score Composer|
|Van Nest Polglase||Art Director|
|Edward Stevenson||Costumes/Costume Designer|
|James G. Stewart||Sound/Sound Designer|
|Vernon Walker||Special Effects|
1. Chapter 1 [3:11]
2. Chapter 2 [9:18]
3. Chapter 3 [1:52]
4. Chapter 4 [2:55]
5. Chapter 5 [1:17]
6. Chapter 6 [4:19]
7. Chapter 7 [4:19]
8. Chapter 8 [2:34]
9. Chapter 9 [2:32]
10. Chapter 10 [5:01]
11. Chapter 11 [2:25]
12. Chapter 12 [5:19]
13. Chapter 13 [4:15]
14. Chapter 14 [5:44]
15. Chapter 15 [5:29]
16. Chapter 16 [3:05]
17. Chapter 17 [4:19]
18. Chapter 18 [2:43]
19. Chapter 19 [4:39]
20. Chapter 20 [2:07]
21. Chapter 21 [5:16]
22. Chapter 22 [2:25]
23. Chapter 23 [3:50]
24. Chapter 24 [3:21]
25. Chapter 25 [5:49]
26. Chapter 26 [2:20]
27. Chapter 27 [3:04]
28. Chapter 28 [3:21]
29. Chapter 29 [4:21]
30. Chapter 30 [3:20]
31. Chapter 31 [2:22]
32. Chapter 32 [2:11]
Commentary By Peter Bogdanovich: On
Commentary By Roger Ebert: On
Opening: World Premiere Of Citizen Kane
Still Photography With Commentary By Roger Ebert: On
English Subtitles (For The Hearing Inpaired): On
Français Subtitles: On
Español Subtitles: On
Português Subtitles: On
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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I concede it may be hard to get into the movie, it has not dated as well as other famous, big name movies have. What is considered acceptably entertaingining by one generation seems dull or even annoying n another. Still, Citizen Kane remains one of the most influential, best produced, visually brilliant movies ever made. Movies were very very different before and after its creation. Up to that point, the film industry had apparently defined everything that was possible, marketable and makable in the industry, and then Welles came in and destroys all the perceptions apart. Also interesting is that this one of the very first 'unauthorized biopics' in a sense it is an unauthorized adaptation of William Hearst's life story, fictionalized to a degree that you could distinguish the character from the real life person, but still enough similarities to tell that it was describing that person. Anyway, the use of innovative cuts, shots and sounds, the grandiose story, and some really solid acting make this an all time classic. I coul list all these guys who could not, or would not know how to make films the way they do if this film was not made. And I will: Coppola, Speielberg, Woo, Lucas, Rodriguez, Hitchcock, Tarantino, Scorsese, Cuaron, Lau, Chan, Hark, Peckinpah, et cetera. And no, I am not exaggerating.
I had been hearing all my life about how great a film this is. After having watched it, I couldn't agree more. A flawless masterpiece. From the acting, to the writing, to the camera work, I have nothing but praise for this work. It is little wonder that Mr. Welles was never able to top it. Worth every penny.
Being only 25 when he made it, Orson Welles deserves three rounds for this one. Even if some do not find it exactly entertaining (though I am not one of them), the originality of the cinematography, script, and storyline all deserve a round of applause from any viewer.
How could anyone give this gem anything but a 5-star rating. From the camerawork to the editing to the acting, there is nothing about this film that is less than superb. To say this is a classic is like saying "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" is a pretty good book. One of a handful of absolutely must-see films!!
Citizen Kane is not necessarially the greatest movie ever made, but it is near the top of the list of anyone who has any kind of understanding of the artistic portion of filmmaking. It was revoloutionary in many ways, including one of the first movies to have location shots. The story is great, and the cinematography is some of the best ever seen. A tour de force.
Don't go thinking this has paled with age, Thare's plenty to learn from and impassion us (IF you can) in this masterpiece.
No film has touched Hollywood so gently or so forcefully as this innovative, honest, and truly American film did and still does. Orson Welles is in top form and shows why being well-known in pictures isn't required to be a good actor. His character ranks with Vito Corleone and Lawrence of Arabia as the most complexly human film character. I am only 15 and I thoroughly enjoyed this film. Some may ignorantly gripe about the films length and thought-inducing plot, but to do so is to forget what a movie is supposed to do: tell an engaging story. It may be older and lack color, but it is no less potent now than in 1941. It will never be forgotten and shall always be revered as the quintessential American film.
This is the best film ever released before in the history of films. The editing was like no other and the acting of Orsen Welles wasn't to bad either, I guess thats what you get when you let a genius direct a film.
Citizen Kane is undoubtedly best film ever made because of the great storyline, great acting, great transtition, great use of visual, and it's just truly great. Orson Welles was at his peak when making this film and it's shame that he never got a chance to make another masterpiece such as Citizen Kane. This is truly must see for every movie buff.
if your looking for a movie to just sit down and not give your full attention, this is not the movie for you.if your looking at citizen kane from a filmakeing point of view, it's amazing.it's angles, flashbacks, and subtle humor are things to look forward to,but you will have to probably watch this film a few times to understand and appreciate.
This is a good film and a classic example of 1940's storytelling put onto film along with innovative (for its time) cinematography. Charles Foster Kane (Orson Welles) is a newspaper mogul that has recently passed away. Through stories told and memories shared by friends and colleagues, we learn about this man from his childhood, to his rise to fame and fall from grace. This is a movie classic and an essential film to see if you are a film buff. Orson Welles gives a spectacular performance as do Joseph Cotten, Dorothy Comingore, Everett Sloane, Agnes Moorehead and Ruth Warrick. The film may be a little hard to get into at first, but as the stories behind Mr. Kane's life are told and scandals revealed, one can't help being compelled to stay and see what else comes to light. Highly recommended!