Thursday, April 13, 2006

Citizen Kane

The first time I watched Citizen Kane was in my high school journalism class. Every class had a 2 1/2 hour block for final exams, and since our final was basically the last issue of the newspaper, our teacher passed out a 10-question exam (stuff like "name the newspaper with the largest circulation in the world" (Pravda, at least at the time), "define slander and libel," etc.) that took about 10 minutes to finish, and then we watched Citizen Kane, with Mr. Black occasionally pointing out important points like how the breakfast montage works.

The second time I watched it, I was working an all-night shift at the hospital, from 11pm to 7am. It was a slow time to work, and practically nothing happened between 1am and 5am, so I'd generally sit in the break room watching TV and trying to stay awake. As it happened, TBS was showing The Greatest Week of Movies Ever that week. That's not my assessment--that's what they were calling it. A whole week of stuff like Casablanca, Gone With The Wind, and The Godfather (not to mention such acclaimed classics as Cleopatra and The Ten Commandments). Obviously, this worked out nicely--in addition to Kane, I got to see The Maltese Falcon for the first time. The funny part of the story, I guess, is the night when they showed Giant, which...OK, I know that's considered a great classic and all, but my God was it boring! And it just would not end! How long is that thing, like 27 hours? Trying to stay awake while watching that was a chore. To this day, I count that among my least-favorite movies, although I've never gone back to watch it again. As an aside, it was also on that same job that I first read Watchmen in one sitting.

I don't really have any grand insights to share on Kane. Just some pretty pictures. Although, when Joseph Cotton gave that "You speak about the people as if you own them!" speach, I couldn't help thinking about George Bush. In fact, if you insert the word "Iraqi" before "people" you get a great sense of what was wrong with the neocon philosophy.


Blogger Reel Fanatic said...

Agreed that Citizen Kane, though not quite as great as critics make it out to be, is a timeless political statement that is easily relevant today ... great pics!

4/13/2006 2:14 PM  
Blogger Chris Oliver said...


4/14/2006 8:05 AM  
Blogger Charlie said...

I disagree that it's not as great. It's an absolute stunning piece of work, in 2006, let alone when it first came out.

Great stuff, Chris.

4/16/2006 2:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i absolutely hated this movie. i think it was boring - had no point besides that stupid rosebud - which turns out to be a sled?! wtf!!!

11/30/2006 12:42 PM  

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