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Citizen Kane

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Is Citizen Kane the Greatest Film of all time

Yes
8
23%
No,it is vastly overrated
6
17%
Very good, but not the best
21
60%
 
Total votes: 35

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ken123
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Citizen Kane

Postby ken123 » April 25th, 2007, 4:27 pm

Is this the best film of all time or vastly overrated ? :wink:

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Postby SSO Admins » April 25th, 2007, 5:19 pm

I think it was groundbreaking, but too topical to be the best film of all time. I'm not sure what i'd choose as the best film of all time, but a finalist would be "All Quiet on the Western Front," which still packs the same impact that it did when it came out.

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Citizen Kane

Postby Moraldo Rubini » April 25th, 2007, 7:38 pm

Surely to think we can find one movie that is the "greatest" is specious, yes? How can one movie be the best? The field is thankfully too broad.

On the TCM Board I was almost scared to declare my love for this movie -- as so many were virulently against it. But I think it's brilliant. I have never tired watching it; in fact, I find it fascinating even today. Last summer, I went to Hearst Castle (some say Xanadu was based on this spot) and played the Bernard Herrmann soundtrack on the road trip there. Its arresting visuals, groundbreaking soundtrack, sound editing alone make it worthy of viewing; but I also find it a touching, poignantly cynical tale. It's certainly in my top 10.

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RE:

Postby Sue Sue Applegate » April 25th, 2007, 7:59 pm

It's in my top 10, too. There were just too many innovations for it not to be. Sounds like a great way to visit Hearst castle, too!

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Postby Mr. Arkadin » April 25th, 2007, 9:20 pm

I would say it is definitely the greatest film of the sound era.

I hate when people say "best all time" because it's art, and art is largely a matter of taste. I personally love the film (and almost all of Welles work), but I can understand why some people would be left shaking their heads.
Last edited by Mr. Arkadin on October 23rd, 2007, 7:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Citizen Kane

Postby sugarpuss » April 25th, 2007, 9:22 pm

Moraldo Rubini wrote:On the TCM Board I was almost scared to declare my love for this movie -- as so many were virulently against it. But I think it's brilliant.


Agreed and agreed. I can understand why there's somewhat of a backlash against Kane. Personal preference, of course combined with the fact that people with strong opinions (like all us film buffs) do not contantly like to be told that "this" movie or "that" movie is the greatest of all time.

The first time I saw this, I couldn't get past the 10 minute newsreel. I just wasn't in the mood. The second time, I actually forced myself to watch it because I was starting to become a Joseph Cotten fan and wound up really loving the entire movie! I rarely miss it when it's on TCM. And when you think of the era that it was made in, it's even more remarkable. The cinematography, the lighting--it's all fantastic.

My favorite scene has to be the unbroken and continuous "making of an opera singer" section. The first time I saw that section, I reversed it over and over, just because it's so seamless in it's backstage to performance transtition.
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Postby Lzcutter » April 26th, 2007, 1:32 am

I think that The Magnificent Ambersons (even in the cut that survives) is a better film than Kane.

I like Kane a great deal and I think it is a ground breaking film but have never felt it was the best film ever made and I think that Ambersons' trumps it in the end for enjoyment and story telling.
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Operatunities

Postby Moraldo Rubini » April 26th, 2007, 1:45 am

Sugarpuss said:
My favorite scene has to be the unbroken and continuous "making of an opera singer" section. The first time I saw that section, I reversed it over and over, just because it's so seamless in it's backstage to performance transtition.

The juxtaposition of the two perspectives of the opera is also brilliant, isn't it? First we see it from the audience's perspective, as Jedediah (Joseph Cotten) tells the story of Kane's ambition to make his wife an opera star. Kane was searching for remnants of home and all that "home" can mean, and found Susan Alexander (and the snow globe on her vanity table). Later we see the same scene, but from Susan's perspective; quivering of voice and spirit while staring at the dark, unfriendly void just past the blinding footlights.

We see other twin-perspective scenes in the movie too. In fact, the opening -- as we approach Xanadu -- uses this effect. As we reach Kane's window, looking in; then we're inside the bedroom and looking out.

The opera scenes remind us too, that William Randolph Hearst had another love before Marion Davies. His heart was stirred by the soprano Sybil Sanderson. Hearst was influential in bringing Massenet's opera Thaïs to the stage, so that the title role could be created by Sanderson. Herrmann's Salammbo is -- in turn -- influenced by Massenet's opera.

Poor Susan! The Chicago Inquirer Drama Page featured the banner "Applause Lavished On Susan Alexander for Rendition", with stories on "Society Leaders Entertain Popular Diva" and "Many Plaudits Given Diva For Premiere". But the review written by her husband, and published under the guise of Jed Leland read:

"Miss Susan Alexander, a pretty but hopelessly incompetent amateur, last night opened the new Chicago Opera House in a performance of Salammbo.

Her singing, happily, is no concern of this department. Of her acting, it is absolutely impossible to say anything except that it represents, in the opinion of this reviewer, a new low. The performance, as a whole, was weak and incomprehensible.

While it is true that a wealth of training has been expended on the voice of Miss Alexander, the result has been pathetitc in the extreme, inasmuch as she lacks tonal purity, volume and the nuances of enunciation so important for the grand opera diva."

[Have I mentioned that I love the Freeze Frame and Zoom features of DVD players?]

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Postby Lzcutter » April 26th, 2007, 2:04 am

Marco,

In the summertime between Memorial Day and late October, Hearst Castle offers an evening tour that includes docents dressed in period costumes of the day as if they were attending a cocktail party at the Hearst Mansion.

Is supposed to be a very informal, very laid back and very wonderful kind of tour.
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"Film is history. With every foot of film lost, we lose a link to our culture, to the world around us, to each other and to ourselves."

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Hanging with Patty?

Postby Moraldo Rubini » April 26th, 2007, 2:25 am

Lynn, I'm also told that certain weekends the Castle is closed to the public, as the Hearst family convenes there and has movie nights! The screening room there is over-the-top, featuring two walls with leaning caryatids standing above the deluge of red velvet. It's on one of these nights that I'd like to drop by... Shall we bring the popcorn?

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Postby Lzcutter » April 26th, 2007, 2:33 am

Tell me when and where and I'll be there with bags for us and the whole Hearst clan!
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"Film is history. With every foot of film lost, we lose a link to our culture, to the world around us, to each other and to ourselves."

"For me, John Wayne has only become more impressive over time." Marty Scorsese

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jdb1

Postby jdb1 » April 26th, 2007, 11:32 am

I like Kane very much, but despite all the talk of its technical brilliance, I can never quite get over the feeling that it is something of an illustrated radio play.

Have you all seen the movie (not sure if it was made for TV), with Liev Schrieber playing Welles, about the making of the Citizen Kane ?Very interesting and Schrieber is a pretty convincing young Welles.[/b]

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Wow!

Postby mickeeteeze » August 3rd, 2007, 9:32 pm

Lzcutter wrote:I think that The Magnificent Ambersons (even in the cut that survives) is a better film than Kane.

I like Kane a great deal and I think it is a ground breaking film but have never felt it was the best film ever made and I think that Ambersons' trumps it in the end for enjoyment and story telling.
While I find "Kane" to be a more complete picture, I love "Ambersons". Definitely a tough call for me.
And for those "Kane" lovers(Include me), I'll offer a very simple explanation for why some don't "get it".
It is a very dark film,whose "hero" is not very likable.

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Postby Lzcutter » August 4th, 2007, 2:33 am

And for those "Kane" lovers(Include me), I'll offer a very simple explanation for why some don't "get it".
It is a very dark film,whose "hero" is not very likable.


Mickee,

I agree that Kane is a dark film with a hero who is not likable.

But with Ambersons, we spend the film waiting (and wanting) for Georgie (Tim Holt) to get his comeuppance But, in the course of that comeuppance, the lives destroyed and altered are on a more emotional level than they are in Kane.

And that is what makes it the better film, at least for me.
Lynn in Lake Balboa

"Film is history. With every foot of film lost, we lose a link to our culture, to the world around us, to each other and to ourselves."

"For me, John Wayne has only become more impressive over time." Marty Scorsese

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Postby precoder » August 4th, 2007, 11:52 am

"Citizen Kane" is very good ... but the best? That would be **wait ~ better not go there** 8)

There are indeed multiple groundbreaking qualities in the film and it's quite the masterpiece in its own right, but less than the greatest for me, so I voted appropriately. I've admitted turning the volume down during the newsreel segment to aleviate myself of that annoyingly loud and evenly drone narrative which comes off way too 'in your face ~ deal with it'. And as an admirer of Marion Davies, I've voiced my displeasure with characterizing her (albiet loosely) as Susan Alexander, a talentless argumentative floozy. Welles and Cotton's make-up as they age in a couple of scenes has obvious latex buckling over their skin although that's a forgivable issue ...

The first time I ever saw it, I wasn't so impressed. I rather disliked it's dark, almost noiry aura and I found it a bit cocky and demanding. The whole thing came together for me however the second time through, I appreciated it much more. It suddenly came together and I got it; **bulb illuminates in head** ...

At this point, being new here, I should proclaim: I am not any sort of self-appointed film authority of lofty visionary introspection. I just call 'em as a I see 'em and admittedly my perceptions of a film often change, even drastically, after a second viewing. The introduction of new characters comes easier having remembered just enough of who they are from before. The beginning of a film becomes clearer ...

I like "CK" ~ excellent film. It's extremely well written and acted. And it's photographed and edited quite brilliantly considering it's budget. If you liked the look and feel of "Kane" try "The Sin Of Nora Moran" 1933, a film Orson Welles studied and drew influence from ...

Benji ... :wink:
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