Charlie (Teresa Wright) is in a state of despair. She believes her family are far too boring and ordinary, and prays for a miracle to save them from this rut. This miracle manifests in the form of her mother’s brother, the man she was named after, Uncle Charlie (Joseph Cotten), who is coming to stay for reasons undisclosed. The family and entire town are quick to embrace Uncle Charlie, with his lavish gifts and big city thinking, but young Charlie begins to suspect that all may not be as it seems, as her uncle seems to be hiding something. Continue reading →
In 1831, Charles Adare (Michael Wilding) the governor’s cousin and youngest son of his family’s wealthy estate, arrives in Sydney to leave his mark. He soon meets Mr. Sam Flusky (Joseph Cotten) a local businessman and land owner, whose emancipated past leaves him with an ill reputation around town, particularly with the governor (Cecil Parker), with whom Charles is staying. Charles is forbidden from engaging with Flusky in any manner, but the reckless younger man disobeys his superior, and heads to Flusky’s house anyway, despite the many warnings he receives from numerous, unrelated people. At Flusky’s dinner party, Charles runs into Flusky’s wife, Henrietta (Ingrid Bergman), who usually remains out of the way and hidden. It soon becomes clear that Hetty has an alcohol problem and is regularly drunk, but once Charles recognises Hetty as being a friend of his sister’s from their youth, the newcomer sets about improving her condition, much to the annoyance of Hetty’s maid Milly (Margaret Leighton). Continue reading →
Charles Foster Kane (Orson Welles), an unimaginably wealthy publishing kingpin, drops his snowglobe and dies alone in his bed. His last dying word, “Rosebud,” sends the national newspaper journalists into a frenzy, all eager to discover it’s true meaning, in the hope of shedding some light onto the tycoon. Led by Jerry Thompson (William Alland), the reporters speak with Kane’s former wife, friends, employees, business partner and butler on their search for the truth. Could it be the name of a girl? A dog? A boat? Or just the rambling ravings of an insane old man?
Up until last year, Citizen Kane has topped Sight and Sound magazine’s Greatest Film Of All Time list, but was recently toppled by Vertigo. It’s been a little while since I’ve seen Hitchcock’s classic, so I can’t vouch for whether the change is correct or not, but I can say that I have no problem with Citizen Kane having been up there for quite so long. This film actually appears on all four of the lists I’m currently working through, and so great is its reputation that I can’t imagine a respected film list denying it a place. I mean, it spawned the prefix “It’s the Citizen Kane of…” as a way of saying a film is the greatest of a specific type. And heads up, this isn’t going to be the Citizen Kane of Citizen Kane reviews. So what makes it so important? Why is it revered by so many people? Will every paragraph in this review end in a question mark?