Tag Archives: Citizen Kane

F for Fake

“I started at the top”, Orson Welles quips in F for Fake, “and have been working my way down ever since”. After the great man’s death in 1985 Welles’s gag became something worryingly close to consensus. Obituary after obituary tutted about what a shame it was

Who’s That Knocking At My Door

Who’s That Knocking At My Door, Martin Scorsese’s black and white debut feature film from 1968, originally started out life as his NYU graduation project some three years earlier. Aged just 23, armed with a miniscule budget and relying on numerous favours, Scorsese took to

Odds Against Tomorrow

Don’t you just get sick of the auteur theory at times? Granted, of course, the theory established some big name directors on the map and helped film-goers spot and narrow down an auteur’s visual style and recurring themes. But over and over again, you can’t

The Last Command

By the time Josef von Sternberg made The Last Command in 1928, his lead actor had become such an institution in Germany that an entire genre was named after him. The Jannings-Film was used to describe any movie where Emil Jannings, the bearish icon of

Ace in the Hole

Films come and go regardless of their quality; the rare exceptions to this are films that capture the mood of the time without getting bogged down in the stylised machinations of culture or fashion. Failing this, perfectly satirising an easily corruptible medium also works. For