the poor dancing girl she won't dance again

‘If I should die,’ said I to myself, ‘I have left no immortal work behind me - nothing to make my friends proud of my memory - but I have lov’d the principle of beauty in all things, and if I had had time I would have made myself remember’d.’ - John Keats

“Like so many Americans, she was trying to construct a life that made sense from things she found in gift shops.” - Kurt Vonnegut

27. screenwriter. watcher of movies. taco lover extraordinaire. drinker of coffee. listener of music. I am obsessed with classic films, contribute to YAM Magazine, run this site: http://cinema-fanatic.com and do social media for Warner Bros. and Rotten Tomatoes

How To Be A Screenwriter

Wishlist // listography // 2014 in Films // 2014 in people getting hitched // 2014 in Books // About Me // film rec lists



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Posts tagged "Citizen Kane"

Rosebud.

I noticed this shot in A Beautiful Mind (2) when I was watching it the other day that reminded me of the shot in Vanilla Sky (3) and I wonder if they’re both references to the above promo picture from Citizen Kane. The angles that both scenes are shot also resemble the angle in Kane when he SPOLIER loses the governor race and Leland confronts him. Food for thought.

There are always films that move me to tears, at certain parts of them and certainly at the endings. I can never watch the end of Bicycle Thief or the end of Citizen Kane or the end of The Seventh Seal without tears in my eyes. Those films are always big emotional workouts. - Woody Allen

I still find any hierarchy of kinds of movies both ridiculous and despicable. When Hitchcock made Psycho - the story of a sometime thief stabbed to death in her shower by the owner of a motel who had stuffed his mother’s corpse - almost all the critics agreed that its subject was trivial. The same year, under Kurosawa’s influence, Ingmar Bergman shot exactly the same theme (The Virgin Spring) but he set it in fourteenth-century Sweden. Everybody went into ecstasy and Bergman won an Oscar for best foreign film. Far be it from me to begrudge him his prize; I want only to emphasize that it was exactly the same subject (in fact, it was a more or less conscious transposition of Charles Perrault’s famous story “Little Red Riding Hood”). The truth is that in these two films, Bergman and Hitchcock each expressed part of his own violence with skill and freed himself of it.

Let me also cite the example of Vittorio De Sica’s Bicycle Thief, which is still discussed as if it were a tragedy about unemployment in postwar Italy, although the problem of unemployment is not really addressed in this beautiful film. It shows us simply - like an Arabic tale, as Cocteau observed - a man who absolutely must find his bicycle, exactly as the woman in the world of The Earrings of Madame de… must again find her earrings. I reject the idea that The Virgin Spring and Bicycle Thief are noble and serious, while Psycho and Madame de… are “entertainments.” All four films are noble and serious, and all four are entertainment.

When I was a critic, I thought that a successful film had simultaneously to express an idea of the world and an idea of cinema; La Régle de Jeu and Citizen Kane corresponded to this definition, perfectly. Today, I demand that a film express either the joy of making cinema or the agony of making cinema. I am not at all interested in anything in between; I am not interested in all those films that do not pulse.

- François Truffaut, 1975

  • JB: Of all of the many movies you made, if you had to pick one or two, what would be your favorite(s)?
  • Patricia Medina Cotten: Let’s see ... Mr. Arkadin and Botany Bay. Working with Orson Welles was something splendid. Hollywood treated Orson abominably. He was a real genius and a great man. I loved my part in Botany Bay. I was a real bad lot in that one. It was a good picture, and James Mason was born to act.
  • JB: What is your favorite movie of all time?
  • PMC: I can’t give you an answer that’s not biased. Oh, well ... Gone With the Wind, and I think I have to say Citizen Kane. Yes, Kane, and not just because my Jo was in it. It’s a great film, isn’t it?
  • JB: Yes, many film historians would agree with you, and so do I. Who is your favorite film actress?
  • PMC: Bette Davis, absolutely -- you cannot take it away from her. Not only was she a great, great actress. She was endowed with a certain excitement on the screen.
  • JB: What about your favorite actor?
  • PMC: What about it? I’m surprised you even asked me. Oh, well, next to Jo, Larry Olivier, of course, you can’t leave him out. I’m now fascinated with Ralph Fiennes.
  • JB: Who is your favorite director?
  • PMC: Orson Welles!