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Citizen Kane (1941)

 -  Drama | Mystery  -  5 September 1941 (USA)
8.4
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Ratings: 8.4/10 from 243,040 users  
Reviews: 1,126 user | 216 critic

Following the death of a publishing tycoon, news reporters scramble to discover the meaning of his final utterance.

Director:

Writers:

(original screen play), (original screen play), 3 more credits »
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Title: Citizen Kane (1941)

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Top 250 #65 | Won 1 Oscar. Another 8 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Erskine Sanford ...
...
William Alland ...
...
George Coulouris ...
Fortunio Bonanova ...
Matiste
Gus Schilling ...
The Headwaiter
Philip Van Zandt ...
Mr. Rawlston
Georgia Backus ...
Miss Anderson
Harry Shannon ...
Kane's Father
Edit

Storyline

A group of reporters who are trying to decipher the last word ever spoke by Charles Foster Kane, the millionaire newspaper tycoon: "Rosebud." The film begins with a news reel detailing Kane's life for the masses, and then from there, we are shown flashbacks from Kane's life. As the reporters investigate further, the viewers see a display of a fascinating man's rise to fame, and how he eventually fell off the "top of the world." Written by Zack H.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Everybody's talking about it! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Mystery

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 September 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

American  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$686,033 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz wrote the balance of the screenplay for this film from a hospital bed recovering from illness. See more »

Goofs

In the newsreel sequence, a gazette in Spanish is shown, announcing Kane's death. The newspaper's name is "El Correspendencia" but that name simply makes no sense for Spanish speakers. The closest match to this would be "La Correspondencia" because most of the words that end with an "A" are meant to reflect a female gender and the correct article is "La", not "El". However, that literally means "The Mail" and this is just a generic name which is fairly related to news media. Also, the words "Murió" in the header, as well as the "Xanadú" in the article's text are misspelled because they lack the accent marks on the last vowels. Another mistake is "Destinguido editor" instead of "Distinguido editor" can be read below the article's title. Finally, the title would never be written as such in Spanish (you can read "Madrid" in the paper): you wouldn't say "El Sr. Kane se murió" but rather "El Sr. Kane ha muerto". It might be a "Heart of Darkness" reference, with the intention that it be translated as "Mr. Kane, he dead." See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Charles Foster Kane: Rosebud...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: Most of the principal actors in "CITIZEN KANE" are new to motion pictures. The Mercury Theatre is proud to introduce them. See more »

Connections

Edited into My Longest Day (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Theme
(uncredited)
from RKO's Abe Lincoln in Illinois (1940)
Music by Roy Webb
Performed in a "News On The March" sequence
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Undoubtedly the greatest American film ever created.
19 July 2001 | by (Princeton, New Jersey) – See all my reviews

Citizen Kane, the film, is many things. It is a brilliantly crafted series of flashbacks and remembrances. It is an engaging story of a dynamic man in a dynamic world. It is a remarkable statement for the wide range of time periods that it covers. It is a deceptively simple story centering on perhaps the most meaningful word in all of moviedom. Behind all that, Citizen Kane is the American cinema. There is not a major director today who has not been influenced by the genius Orson Welles put forth in his debut masterpiece. The film centers around a group of reporters investigating the origin of the dying newspaper tycoon (loosely based on William Randolph Hearst), Charles Foster Kane's last word: Rosebud. The movie begins with an unforgettable newsreel montage summarizing the man's life.

From there on, the viewer is thrown into a gloriously chaotic world of flashbacks upon flashbacks, in which the viewer slowly learns just about everything about Charles Foster Kane's enthralling life. From his trying childhood to his rise to power to the pinnacle of his success to his marital difficulties to his fall from grace, the story of Charles Foster Kane is presented for the viewer in a way that few other movies can offer: magically. Citizen Kane, undeniably, is THE triumph of the American cinema, and one of the greatest films every created.


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