The debate over Casablanca and Citizen Kane has been a classic argument between film critics and historians alike, and this is because both of these pieces are timeless pictures that have managed to captivate audiences well after their era. On a broad spectrum analysis this is an apples and oranges debate as the two films both have great cinematographic value but for different reasons. However, the real question at hand is which film is the greatest? Which film transformed the future of American film making? It is these questions that I as many others have, will attempt to answer in the following essay as I explain why I believe Citizen Kane is the greatest film ever made.
Citizen Kane was produced, co-written, directed, and lead acted …show more content…
Editor Robert Wise was said to have “blended 127 different clips of film into the newsreel, some of which were actual news footage while the others were staged shots of the actors.” Later Welles was said to have “aged” these by dragging the negatives across a concrete floor.
In the closing of the newsreel we find ourselves in a room full of highly shadowed journalists, with little to no recognizable faces. Reporter Jerry Thompson is directed by his editor to pursue ominous feel as we are slowly taken closer to Kane’s mansion and are shown a lite window which fades to black, and snowflakes suddenly fill the screen. As the camera pulls back, a snow-covered cabin comes into view. The camera pulls back more quickly to show that what we have been looking at is actually just a scene inside a snow globe in the hand of an old man. The story of Kane’s dying words and from there we are taken back to Kane’s youth through the innovative use of flashbacks, which are instigated by Thompson as he meets with different people who were close to Kane.
One such flashback begins at Thatcher’s building where the reporter Thompson enters an exaggeratedly large room and begins to read about Kane. This is one of the scenes in which cinematographer Greg Toland’s deep focus technique of filming and use of unique lighting, in which the only light source hits
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The movie Citizen Kane was ahead of its time and challenged what a classic Hollywood movie was defined as. The film begins with the death of Kane, and his final word ‘rosebud’. A reporter sent to interview various people close to Kane to discover what ‘rosebud’ means. The audience is given various perspectives on the life of Kane through these people and the audience is taken along for the ride. All movies out at the time had similar lighting and narrative because of the quick factory like atmosphere in Hollywood studios at the time.
The shots, though the same type of framing, have different functions for the different parts of the film. In Leland’s flashback, the film’s lowest camera position happens at the point of Kane’s most crushing defeat. In one of the scenes from Leland’s flashback, Leland confronts Kane in their office. With the desks are pushed aside and the employees gone, the room looks larger and emptier that it is before. The camera is placed at the floor level and shooting from a low angle. The background of the low angle shot adds to the focus to the emotional distance between Kane and Leland and the falling out of these two characters. Hence, the low angle here functions to isolate Kane and
The first montage seen is the March of Time Newsreel. This reel is very important as it tells us that Charles Foster Kane dies and gives us a backstory on his ridiculous life. Another important montage in the story was after Kane got married to his first wife, Emily Kane. This montage shows him and his new wife happy at the table. Going through many weeks and months this montage shows the transition Kane and his wife has just through the being at the dinner table. At first, they are lovey dovey sitting close to each other, then Emily starts talking about how he is always at work which leads to them sitting away from each other by the end of the montage reading opposite newspapers. The montage are really important but the lighting allows the story to really stand
The first scene “Introducing Truman- Day 10,909” is an example of one of these scenes as it uses techniques to introduce to the audience Truman’s world as one that is cheerful, happy and bright. As Truman gets ready for his day at work the scene has bright lighting and the costumes are
It was degraded using sand to give a grainy look as opposed to the smooth film used for the main picture. Also in the newsreel, the jerky cuts, when Kane spills cement on his coat then is shown clean, give a more genuine feel to the footage. The newsreel scene can also be viewed as a parody of an actual news programme of the time, "March of Time". This
They had one character trying to find out what his last words meant. By going to friends and family and asking them questions. During each visit with someone they went to a flashback explaining the certain time period in his life along with all his accomplishments. Next one of the odd things that aren't used in a film was the use of the newsreel footage that was shown at the beginning of the film. The purpose I believe was to show you this mans life from the eyes of all the newspaper articles about him and other things that were going on. It also let you get a feel of the time period and what was going on.
With the sheer magnitude of architectural elements that are needed to provide this exploratory tale through Kane’s life, Orson Welles was able to really take advantage of the details to amplify the story. This use of architectural elements and design not only helped reinforce the specific scenes that they were in at the time, but went so far as to help illustrate the character of Charles Foster Kane and relate Kane’s story to modern day events. Throughout the entirety of the film, the architecture reinforces and develop the narrative in the shots. This effect is present from the start, with the presentation of Kane’s looming, literally mountainous estate shrouded in the fog (figure 1).
Prior to Citizen Kane, Hollywood films always followed specific screenplays. Citizen Kane was narrated principally through flashbacks and told through a third party newsreel reporter who was attempting to solve the mystery of the main character Charles Foster Kane’s dying word: “Rosebud.” Citizen Kane
After his death they are going through all of Kane’s things and remembering his last words “Rosebud”. Not knowing what that meant, it left them puzzled. The way they the camera panned over all of his belongings and visualizing all that he had you would think he was the happiest person around. I men he became the richest man. But his last words “Rosebud”, what did that mean. As they continue to pan the camera over his entire belongings, you see the sled that he had as a child. A Worker picks it up and throws it into the fire along with everything else. As the camera pans in you see the word Rosebud and a picture of it. Your heart just sinks to think that this man had everything in the world that you could have and in the end all he wanted was to go back to that little boy who was playing in the snow living with his mom and dad. That scene made you feel the anguish he must have felt being taken or rather given away. The anguish his father felt wasn’t even comparable to what Charles Foster Kane felt throughout his
This film was directed by Benjamin Ross in 1999. The film is about a movie that was released about sixty years before this production. It is odd to me that in those sixty years, no one had chosen to create this film until Ross thought about it. It is weird to see a movie about another movie. It is obvious that a recreation is never the same than the original work, but I feel like this movie truly demonstrated some of the aspects and difficulties that Orson Welles experienced for his film, “Citizen Kane.”
As esteemed film director William Friedkin once said; "Citizen Kane is a quarry for filmmakers". It is undeniable that Citizen Kane is the epitome of the great American film. It was initially released in 1941 and was met with great criticism . However, since its release many years ago it is evident that the film made advancements in cinema techniques which were well ahead of its time . The foremost reason Citizen Kane is considered one of the great American films ever created is due to the innovative film techniques that director Orson Welles brought to life .These techniques include new methods for cinematography, lighting, and sound .
But it is precisely the way Citizen Kane's technique serves its story which makes the film so powerful. All right then, let's talk about technique. You can go to any number of textbooks and read about the various aspects of style which have made the movie influential - the deep focus photography, low angle shots and wide angle lenses, the use of ceilings, overlapping dialogue, sudden cuts, and so forth and so on. I don't need to go over all that. What I want to express is the effect of all these techniques on a viewer - and especially in the context of the kind of film a viewer in America was accustomed to in 1941 - the Hollywood
Orson Welles’ Citizen Kane (1941) is considered one of the greatest films of all time. Through his unconventional use of film composition and mise-en-scene, Welles’ clever manipulation of the camera and the scene before it effectively captured audiences in a manner that was unprecedented in American cinema storytelling. A significant filmic element of the assigned sequence of Citizen Kane would be its consistent use of deep focus. Shallow focus is used to emphasize one part of an image over another, and Citizen Kane fails to do so the entire time.
Citizen Kane begins with a shot of Charles Foster Kane on his deathbed where he utters his last word “Rosebud”. Kane’s death is sensational world-wide news and a newsreel producer tasks a man by the name of Jerry Thompson to find out the meaning of the word “Rosebud”. Thompson begins his quest by interviewing friends of Kane, who tell the life of Kane through flashbacks. Thompson first meets Kane’s second ex-wife Susan Alexander Kane, who is now an alcoholic at her own club. Susan refuses to tell anything to Thompson. As a result, Thompson goes to the private archive of Walter Parks Thatcher, the late caretaker of Kane during Kane’s early years. Through Thatcher 's memoirs Thompson learns of Kane’s childhood. Kane was born on a farm where a recently discovered gold mine lay. Kane’s
Through his 1941 film, Citizen Kane, Orson Welles’ portrays the complex nature of individuals as he explores the defining characteristics of the human condition through the depiction of the protagonist, Charles Foster Kane. The film’s enduring values is attributed to its explorations of relevant contextual concerns present throughout the 20th century and contemporary society. Through Welles’ use of innovative cinematic construction and textual flair, Welles highlights the complexities in shaping an individual’s identity, whilst also exploring the corrupting nature power has on an individual and their relations.