Monday, September 1, 2008

Citizen Kane

Orson Welles, 1941, bw (9.0*)

AFI and Time Mag Top 100
What many consider the best American movie or even overall best film ever made has certainly withstood the test of time, though its merits may be overrated by today's standards.

Orson Welle's film achieved acclaim for some innovations that aren't that important, such as the first film to show ceilings, thus proving they either weren't sets, or that the sets were more complete. What's even better is the film's pace, the fact that Orson Welles was only 26 at the time, and that it attacked a living person's undue influence, newspaper baron William Randolph Hurst, at a time when he was still alive and powerful enough to try to quash the picture. Hurst is noted for creating the Spanish-American war to sell papers, also for paying Emelio Zapata to "fight a revolution" for the same reason, he even funded Zapata's uprising.

Overall, the film can be depressing and pessimistic, but that doesn't make it less true as some of the more evil, self-centered people alive have achieved great wealth and influence over "the masses" by controlling the media. One Oscar, for Welles' screenplay, which many critics consider Oscar's biggest oversight, as many think the film and Welles should have have won.

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These are the individual film reviews of what I'm considering the best 1000 dvds available, whether they are films, miniseries, or live concerts. Rather than rush out all 1000 at once, I'm doing them over time to allow inclusion of new releases - in fact, 2008 has the most of any year so far, 30 titles in all; that was a very good year for films, one of the best ever.



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