“Citizen Kane” (1941)

Genre: Drama
Director: Orson Welles
Starring Cast: Orson Welles, Joseph Cotton, Dorothy Comingore

When Charles Foster Kane (Welles) whispers the word “rosebud” with his dying breath, a rambling course is set. Kane’s friends, associates and colleagues attempt to give meaning to these seemingly innocent and haphazard syllables by examining flashbacks from moments in Kane’s life.

For many movie fans, “Citizen Kane” remains one of the best films ever made. It has maintained a strong fan base, which seems not to have diminished with almost 70 years passing. The praise this movie receives whenever mentioned shows that it deserves its almost obsequious accolades when any “must see” movie list is produced. This adulation is richly deserved when you consider Orson Welles was only 25 when he co-wrote, starred in and directed “Citizen Kane.” This achievement was even better when you consider that the film was primarily ground-breaking in its cinematography.

The story resumes with the audience left to think over the dying words of a forlorn man. We are suddenly and unexpectedly thrown into the centre of Kane’s life when he was a highly successful newspaper magnate; a man who built his empire from modest beginnings to become one of the USA’s most influential businessmen. We learn however that Kane’s contentment and success may not always run hand in hand. This is quickly made evident when the Kane’s power starts to erode and his empire falls around him.

So, what is to be made of the muttering of the word “rosebud,” The mystery around the word is exposed right at the end, but after so much probing and guesswork, the truth is somewhat of a surprise.

Was this post helpful?