In fog-dripping, barren and sometimes macabre settings, 11th-century Scottish nobleman Macbeth is led by an evil prophecy and his ruthless yet desirable wife to the treasonous act that ... See full summary »
Three stories of murder and the supernatural. In the first, a museum worker is introduced to a world behind the pictures he sees every day. Second, when two lifelong friends fall in love ... See full summary »
After reading too many novels about knights and heroic stories, Don Quijote and his servant Sancho Panza decide to wander the roads of Spain to protect the weak and to accomplish good deeds... See full summary »
A Navy engineer, returning to the U.S. with his wife from a conference, finds himself pursued by Nazi agents, who are out to kill him. Without a word to his wife, he flees the hotel the ... See full summary »
Dolores del Rio
Guy Van Stratten, American smuggler, leaves an Italian prison term with one asset, a dying man's words about wealthy, mysterious Gregory Arkadin. Guy finds it most pleasant to investigate Arkadin though his lovely daughter Raina, her father's idol. To get rid of Guy, Arkadin claims amnesia about his own life prior to 1927, sending Guy off to investigate Arkadin's unknown past. Guy's quest spans many countries and eccentric characters who contribute clues. But the real purpose of Guy's mission proves deadly; can Guy himself survive it? Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
"Mr. Arkadin" was created from three episodes of the 1951-52 radio program "The Lives of Harry Lime": "Man of Mystery" (AKA "Greek Meets Greek"), "Murder on the Riviera" and "Blackmail Is an Ugly Word". Arakdin is based mostly on the first of the three and centered on a character named Gregory Arkadian. Primary characters and set-ups are taken from the other two episodes. See more »
The shadows of the crew and camera operator are clearly seen at the very end of the film when the convertible drives off. See more »
A scorpion wanted to cross a river, so he asked the frog to carry him. The frog refused because the scorpion would sting him. That would not be logical, explained the scorpion, because if he stung the frog they would both drown. So the frog agreed to carry the scorpion. Half way across, the frog felt a terrible pain - the scorpion had stung him. There is no logic in this, exclaimed the frog. I know, replied the scorpion, but I cannot help it - it is my nature.
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It certainly doesn't rank as one of Welles' masterpieces. It moves too quickly, and it was obviously made cheaply (and he doesn't use this to his benefit, as he would a decade later when he made Chimes at Midnight). The sound is really bad, as it is in a couple of Welles' other late films. The screenplay is rather choppy, and I had difficulty following it at times (perhaps due to the quality of the sound recording). It also, at times, feels like a Frankenstein picture - that is, themes and styles from Welles' other films seem balled together to make Mr. Arkadin. It is most often compared with Citizen Kane. Both are about men researching the life of a great man, Charles Foster Kane and Gregory Arkadin. However, I feel that this comparison is more incidental than important. Mr. Arkadin is of an entirely different genre. It is a thriller, and it reminded me much more of The Stranger and The Lady from Shanghai than Citizen Kane. The basic story is as follows: a small-time blackmailer named Guy Van Stratten (Robert Arden) is hired by the mysterious billionaire Gregory Arkadin to research his past. You see, Mr. Arkadin is an amnesiac. One morning, he woke up with a briefcase full of Swiss money. From there, he built an empire. Now he wants to find out who he was before that morning. Van Stratten flies all over the world following clues. What he discovers is that Arkadin's past is quite ugly. This part of the film reminds me of The Stranger. Van Stratten soon realizes that he's being played for a sucker by Arkadin, which is very reminiscent of The Lady from Shanghai. Mr. Arkadin is also Welles' first attempt at comedy (he'd play this angle in a more sophisticated way in The Trial and Chimes at Midnight). The characters who are interviewed by Van Stratten are such a wacky crew, Felliniesque, I would say. There are several exceptionally entertaining interviews, and a lot of crazy characters. The last is played by the great character actor Akim Tamiroff, who delivers one of his funniest performances. Stylistically, Mr. Arkadin reminds me of Welles' previous film, The Tragedy of Othello: The Moor of Venice. The editing is choppy and the dialogue spoken too quickly to register. In the end, the film just seems too rushed. It's a fun film, but I'm guessing that I won't remember any of it in a few hours. Perhaps it will seem better to me in the future. 8/10.
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