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Mr. Arkadin (1955)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 2 October 1962 (USA)
An American adventurer investigates the past of the mysterious tycoon Gregory Arkadin, placing himself in grave danger.

Director:

Orson Welles

Writers:

Orson Welles (story), Orson Welles (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Orson Welles ... Gregory Arkadin
Michael Redgrave ... Burgomil Trebitsch
Patricia Medina ... Mily
Akim Tamiroff ... Jakob Zouk
Mischa Auer ... The Professor
Paola Mori ... Raina Arkadin
Katina Paxinou ... Sophie
Grégoire Aslan ... Bracco
Peter van Eyck ... Thaddeus
Suzanne Flon ... Baroness Nagel
Robert Arden ... Guy Van Stratten
Jack Watling ... Marquis of Rutleigh
Frédéric O'Brady Frédéric O'Brady ... Oscar (as O'Brady)
Tamara Shayne Tamara Shayne ... Woman in Apartment (as Tamara Shane)
Terence Longdon ... Secretary (as Terence Langdon)
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Storyline

From the lips of a dying man at a dimly-lit Italian dock, Guy Van Stratten, the disreputable American fortune hunter, receives invaluable information about the powerful financial titan, Gregory Arkadin. In high hopes that something good might come of it, Guy finally approaches the multi-million tycoon intent on exploiting him, only to be mysteriously hired by Mr Arkadin, to reconstruct his murky past history prior to 1927 instead. But, as the methodical detective scours the globe to put together the dangerously knotty puzzle, people end up dead, gradually closing in on Van Stratten who begins to shed light on this murderously difficult assignment. Are those cases linked together? In the end, has the reclusive magnate something to hide? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Two words whispered, two men dead... See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

France | Spain | Switzerland

Language:

English | German | French | Polish

Release Date:

2 October 1962 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dossier secret See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| | (TCM print) | (2006 Restored Version)

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Ultraviolet High Fidelity Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film is part of the Criterion Collection, spine #322. See more »

Goofs

When the small plane is shown in long shots, it has a solid roof over the cockpit, but when Arkadin is shown on the radio calling the Barcelona tower in closeup, he is sitting in a plane with an open cockpit. See more »

Quotes

Gregory Arkadin: I do not know who I am.
See more »

Alternate Versions

There are five versions of the film, Mr. Arkadin. -There is the public domain version, the one most common in America. After the opening credits, it begins with Van Stratten's narration on the docks. It is told in linear time. -There is the European version, called Confidential Report. It has footage of papier maché bats in the credits, and has some footage not seen in the public domain version. It is told in flashbacks. -There is the version currently in possession of Corinth Films. According to Welles friend Peter Bogdanovich, this version and its first four scenes correspond directly to Orson Welles' intentions. It is told in flashbacks. -There is a Spanish language version that corresponds directly to the Corinth version. However, the roles played by Katina Paxinou and Suzanne Flon are now played by Spanish actresses (Irene López Heredia and Amparo Rivelles). -As of 2005, there is a version being prepared by the Munich Filmmuseum that not only contains footage found in different versions of the film, but also corresponds as closely as possible to the complete intentions of Orson Welles. See more »

Connections

Featured in TCM Guest Programmer: David Thomson (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

O Tannenbaum
(uncredited)
Traditional tune
Played by the band outside Zouk's apartment building
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Let's drink to character
22 January 2006 | by antcol8See all my reviews

You guys are great...so much interesting, smart stuff in all the comments. What can I add? Well, I saw it last night, and I was thinking about The Auteur Theory and Roland Barthes' thoughts about the one big book of which all books are a part. And, although I haven't seen Alphaville for years, I realized that the connections between these two films are important: the Mizraki score and the performance of Akim Tamiroff.Godard is such a great mannerist, and this film (Arkadin) is such a basic text for director - driven cinema. How can this film mean anything to anyone who doesn't understand the rage to create - against all odds, against one's self-destructive nature, against one's death wish? It is "breathless", truly. Scenes never give the impression of ending, everything is done in overdrive, people are constantly looming, dizzyingly moving in and out of shot; the grotesquerie of the bad acting rhymes with the grotesquerie of the costume set pieces and with that of the B movie Euro - freak character actors parading, one by one, in front of the camera for their star turns. "Feeding time" indeed! I saw Arkadin shortly after seeing Spielberg's Munich. The only similarity is in the constant change of location. But where in the Spielberg this functions as a celebration of money, budget and the power of illusion, here each location is both overcrowded and threadbare. The Munich of Arkadin is a bombed-out nightmare with traces of its former elegance. The Europe of this film is so haunted and sleepwalking; the world of this film is made up of bits and scraps.

The fact that Arkadin connects closely to Kane or Quinlan is obvious and certainly interesting. Although it should seem obvious at this late date that Welles has patterns and themes that reoccur throughout his films. Does this fact still illuminate anything? If anybody questions the fact that Welles is an artist...well, this film will just add to their confusion. But for us believers this film can function like the ritual suffering of the penitents in the film. It hurts so good!


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