Citizen Kane is an American drama film that was directed as well as co-written and produced by the starring of the film- Orson Welles which was his first feature film. The film has often been considered by many critics as well as fans and movie makers as one of the best films ever made. The movie has been particularly praised for the nature of its innovativeness in cinematography as well as the narrative structure and choice of music.
The film describes real life behind though facilitated by fictions support of ideas in examining the life as well as the legacy of Welles who is a character that is based on a newspaper tycoon- William Randolph Hearst. The publishing world that Kane is based on in the film is given birth out of social life but then slowly starts to turn into a callous pursuit of power. The story is mainly narrated through the use of flashbacks.
John Ford’s Stagecoach on the film is more than pronounced despite the fact that it is clear that Welles did in fact step in. If the narrative by kane owes much as to the example of Ford is that of visual texture. There is alot of German expressionism that can be seen in the film. The other thing that kane owes is the massively obliged to the chiascuro ligting of Lang as well as the fluidity as expresses by Murnau and the baroque mise-en-scï¿½ne which belongs to von Sternberg.
Despite the fact that Welles claimed that he was to large extents unfamiliar with the use of expressionism when he was starting up in film making, through the expression of his ideas in the film it is clear that he is an expressionist without a doubt. The custom as seen in the early films was that the individual shots from which the film was brought up in terms of visuals were uninflected. A meaning was derived in the content of a shot or in the juxtaposition of a single shot against another. Taking their nods from the painting and theatre, what the espressionists did was make the shot itself as subjcetive. The way that the image was contructed to large extents reflected the inner emotions of the characters that are involved, their relationships with one another and their statuses. The alienation of kane from the world as well as everyone that is in it is very well conveyed by the distance that is ever growing between him and all the other characters within the frames. In instances like this, Welles uses the depthe percpective that involves the show of expressive distortion of space that creates a metaphor for something in the psychology of Kane.
An example of expressionalism as seen in the film DETOUR which is a drama film is when AL tries to wake Haskell up after he has treated him to a meal and in pullng down down the convertible top, he finds that Haskell has died from a heart attack, the writer puts us in the most spine chilling aswell as convincing position followed by panic in seeing what is going through AL’s mind which include running since it is almost clear that no one will believe him and the thought of running away (Herzogenrath 71).
Although no meaning is attached to the words on the sign of a fence that reads, NO TRESSPASSING, it is later that we realize that the characters in the film are attempting to tresspass in to the life of Kane. The mansion can be viewed as a metaphor because while the fence is the deportment that he puts up to prevent others from accesing is thoughts. This as a result only begs for the question whether we got through in to Kane’s mind. One of the thoughts that we are able to decrypt is that of the relationship that exists between Susan and Kane’s mother whereby we see both of these people take him back to a life before all the complexities began which was wehn he was a child with his mother which is the reason that we see that Kane enjoys the quiet times that they spend together with Susan since just like when he was a kid, when with her, he becames relieved of all the pressures of the world that are on his mind.
Just like any other captivating film, the film does not end without the rise of conflict and Citizen Kane is no exception. Despite being a welathy newspaper mogul, Charles Foster Kane faces an intense battlewith himself in pursuit of hapiness that he lost long ago as a child. Ina ddition to that he also has external battles to deal with which involve a battle with a corrupt opponent for a political office. One of the things that we see is that in Kane’s mind he thinks that he can be happy by gaining more power and possesions which is the reason that he runs for mayorship with the thought that he will find the hapiness that he is looking for.
In DETOUR we see that Al has made his case when it comes to the audience and just like any other true protagonist, life has attacked him where he is most vulnerable. The cause of his downfall are his weak character and the act of stealing Haskell’s identity. One of the things that seem to make the film great include the fact that wherever the character seems to go he is followed by passion as well as stupidity which renders him doomed from the very start in his fight against destiny.
In Citizen Kane we see that the Kane is in constant search of filling a void which is hapiness that he wants to get back to the way he was when he was a child and tries to do this by getting more which in the end that he ends up being power hungry and stiil depressed rather than what he was searching for which is hapiness.
- Herzogenrath, Bernd. The Films of Edgar G. Ulmer. Lanham, Md: The Scarecrow Press, Inc, 2009. Print.