RKO 281

( 2 )

Overview

Benjamin Ross' docudrama about the making of Citizen Kane, RKO 281, comes to DVD with a standard full-frame transfer that preserves the original broadcast ratio of 1.33:1. Closed-captioned English soundtracks are rendered in both Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby Digital Surround, while a Spanish soundtrack has been recorded in Dolby Digital Mono. English, Spanish, and French subtitles are accessible. Supplemental materials include cast and crew biographies. Although the lack of extras is a disappointment, the ...
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DVD (Wide Screen / Dolby 5.1 / Mono)
$8.95
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Overview

Benjamin Ross' docudrama about the making of Citizen Kane, RKO 281, comes to DVD with a standard full-frame transfer that preserves the original broadcast ratio of 1.33:1. Closed-captioned English soundtracks are rendered in both Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby Digital Surround, while a Spanish soundtrack has been recorded in Dolby Digital Mono. English, Spanish, and French subtitles are accessible. Supplemental materials include cast and crew biographies. Although the lack of extras is a disappointment, the inexpensive list price and the solid picture and sound quality make this a disc worth looking at, especially for anyone interested in film history.
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Special Features

Interactive menus; Cast & crew bios; Language/subtitles and chapter selections
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Greg Fagan
Mining the controversy behind a certified masterpiece, RKO 281 is a film about the greatest film ever made -- namely, Citizen Kane. With visual gusto and verbal economy, it lushly dramatizes the story of 25-year-old theater wunderkind Orson Welles, whose stunning film debut incurs the wrath of media mogul William Randolph Hearst -- the inspiration for Citizen Kane's complex and corrupt title character. Hearst's furious campaign against the film nearly convinced the moguls to burn the negative before its release. Scream veteran Liev Schreiber plays Welles as a bullying genius, at turns cruel to his party-prowling screenplay writer Herman Mankiewicz (John Malkovich) and condescending to his sympathetic RKO studio boss George Schaefer (Roy Scheider). Director Benjamin Ross, inspired by the American Experience documentary "The Battle Over Citizen Kane," frames the story as a battle of colossal egos -- Welles, the artist, versus Hearst (James Cromwell), a bitter patrician on the brink of bankruptcy. He doesn't stray much into Citizen Kane itself or the political atmosphere of the time, and keeps the ride taut. That, and the wonderful performances by Melanie Griffith as Marion Davies (Hearst's mistress) and Brenda Blethyn as gossip crone Louella Parsons, make it a ride well worth taking.
Barnes & Noble
Mining the controversy behind a certified masterpiece, RKO 281 is a film about the greatest film ever made -- namely, Citizen Kane. With visual gusto and verbal economy, it lushly dramatizes the story of 25-year-old theater wunderkind Orson Welles, whose stunning film debut incurs the wrath of media mogul William Randolph Hearst -- the inspiration for Citizen Kane's complex and corrupt title character. Hearst's furious campaign against the film nearly convinced the moguls to burn the negative before its release. Scream veteran Liev Schreiber plays Welles as a bullying genius, at turns cruel to his party-prowling screenplay writer Herman Mankiewicz John Malkovich and condescending to his sympathetic RKO studio boss George Schaefer Roy Scheider. Director Benjamin Ross, inspired by the American Experience documentary "The Battle Over Citizen Kane," frames the story as a battle of colossal egos -- Welles, the artist, versus Hearst James Cromwell, a bitter patrician on the brink of bankruptcy. He doesn't stray much into Citizen Kane itself or the political atmosphere of the time, and keeps the ride taut. That, and the wonderful performances by Melanie Griffith as Marion Davies Hearst's mistress and Brenda Blethyn as gossip crone Louella Parsons, make it a ride well worth taking.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/25/2000
  • UPC: 026359157622
  • Original Release: 1999
  • Rating:

  • Source: Hbo Home Video
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Wide Screen / Dolby 5.1 / Mono
  • Sound: Dolby Digital, monaural
  • Language: English, Español
  • Time: 1:27:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 87,058

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Liev Schreiber Orson Welles
James Cromwell William Randolph Hearst
Melanie Griffith Marion Davies
John Malkovich Herman Mankiewicz
Brenda Blethyn Louella Parsons
Roy Scheider George Schaefer
David Suchet Louis B. Mayer
Fiona Shaw Hedda Hopper
Liam Cunningham Gregg Toland
Lucy Cohu Dolores Del Rio
Kerry Shale Bernard Herrmann
Tim Woodward Jack Warner
Ron Berglas David O. Selznick
Geoffrey Hutchings Harry Cohn
Roger Allam Walt Disney
Jay Benedict Darryl F. Zanuck
Anastasia Hille Carole Lombard
Technical Credits
Benjamin Ross Director
John Altman Score Composer
Su Armstrong Producer
David Daniels [countertenor] Asst. Director
Clive Derbyshire Sound/Sound Designer
Maria Djurkovic Production Designer
Lora Kennedy Casting
Diane Minter Lewis Executive Producer
John Logan Screenwriter
Alex Mackie Editor
Joyce Nettles Casting
Tony Scott Executive Producer
Ridley Scott Executive Producer
Mike Southon Cinematographer
Chris Zarpas Executive Producer
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
0. Chapters
1. Main Title/Orson Makes a Wish [4:14]
2. "Good Evening, Mr. Hearst" [8:57]
3. "Take My Hand, Mank." [8:27]
4. Genius at Work [5:58]
5. RKO 281 Begins [7:13]
6. "Come Back, Mank." [4:07]
7. RKO 281 Wraps [3:17]
8. The First Screening [5:22]
9. Hearst Strikes [10:11]
10. Pressure Builds [8:41]
11. Hollywood vs. Welles [8:35]
12. End Game [11:29]
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Menu

Side #1 --
   Cast & Crew Bios
      Orson Wells -- Liev Schreiber
      William Randolph Hearst -- James Cromwell
      Marion Davies -- Melanie Griffith
      Herman Mankiewicz -- John Malkovich
      Louella Parsons -- Brenda Blethyn
      George Schaefer -- Roy Scheider
      Directed by -- Benjamin Ross
      Written by -- John Logan
   Languages
      English Dolby 5.1
      English Dolby Surround
      Spanish Mono
   Subtitles
      English
      Français
      Español
      None
   Play Movie
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 2 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Comments for RKO 281

    I first saw it on HBO and I was hooked in it ever since. I hope to buy the dvd next month. Tried to get it via my local library gut all they had was the video version, but I saw it nonetheless and love every minute of it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    MUST SEE/OWN

    ACCIDENTLY CAME ACROSS THIS FLIX. IT EXPLAINED CITIZEN KANE, FINALLY. NOW I GET IT. I BOUGHT IT.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews