I was lucky enough tonight to see the movie, “Citizen Kane” at a one-time showing at a local theater.

Movie Poster for one time showing of Citizen Kane - Orson Welles was only 25

Movie Poster for one time showing of Citizen Kane - Orson Welles was only 25

After the movie, I was asking myself the question, “How old was Orson Welles when he did Citizen Kane?” And by “did”, I mean, he co-wrote, directed, and, played the lead.

The answer: Orson Welles was 25 years old when he made “Citizen Kane”.

I had already seen “Citizen Kane” on television. But, that’s not the same.

All of my favorite lines were still in the movie.

I particularly enjoy when the Chairman of the Board explains to the reporter not to underestimate what a person will remember.

He then tells the story that as a young man he saw a pretty girl on a passing ferry. As he reflects to the reporter, not a month goes by that he doesn’t think of that girl.

Citizen Kane by Orson Welles at 25 Years of Age

Citizen Kane by Orson Welles at 25 Years of Age

And of course, there’s the mystery of “Rose Bud”. If you don’t know how that one turns out, see the movie. Far be it from me to ruin it for you.

I also liked, and, remembered, the breakfast scenes, which go from giddy romance to outright persecution.

And there’s the classic line supposedly uttered by yellow journalist William Randolph Hurst. In the movie, it’s not an exact quote.

I seem to remember from freshman American History, the quote is “You supply the pictures, I’ll supply the war.” That’s not the quote in the movie.

And, I saw and heard details that I had not noticed previously.

I got a chuckle out of the Chairman of the Board saying he had plenty of time. It reminded me of the real life situation that delegating is the art of moving work to another person’s desk.

Orson Welles was 25 years old when he starred in Citizen Kane

Orson Welles was 25 years old when he starred in Citizen Kane

Also, I thought the whole theme that Kane didn’t (or couldn’t) love anyone, but only wanted love from others was unnecessarily pounded home.

It’s one thing to have the theme of a movie stated out-loud by one of the characters.

It’s another thing entirely to have the theme stated out-loud multiple times by multiple characters. Geezzz, don’t you trust that we’re listening… if not the first time, then, at least by the third time.

Overall, it was a great experience. Citizen Kane is an iconic American film… and, amazingly, Orson Welles was only 25 years old when he co-wrote, directed, and starred in Citizen Kane. The movie won one Oscar, for Best Screenplay.

Incidentally, William Randolph Hurst banned coverage of the movie by his papers. Also, “Citizen Kane” was not a box-office success, but, did receive good reviews at the time. However, it wasn’t until the re-release of Citizen Kane in the 1950′s did its legend begin to grow.

Note: “Citizen Kane” is on my list of “My 101 Favorite Movies”.

One Comment

  1. justmovies says:

    Addendum: I read an interesting article by Paul Rossen that says:

    “Right from the start of movies, it was a convention that the rich were vulgarly acquisitive but were lonely and miserable and incapable of giving or receiving love. As a mass medium, movies have always soothed and consoled the public with the theme that the rich can buy everything except what counts—love.”

    The article Raising Kane , is an in-depth look at “Citizen Kane” and the circumstances surrounding its production.

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