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F for Fake (1973)

A documentary about fraud and fakery.

Directors:

Orson Welles, Gary Graver (uncredited) | 2 more credits »

Writer:

Orson Welles
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3 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Orson Welles ... Himself - Narrator (voice)
Oja Kodar ... Herself - The Girl
François Reichenbach François Reichenbach ... Himself - Special Participant
Elmyr de Hory ... Himself
Clifford Irving ... Himself
Laurence Harvey ... Himself
Edith Irving Edith Irving ... Herself
David Walsh David Walsh ... Himself
Paul Stewart ... Himself - Special Participant
Richard Wilson Richard Wilson ... Himself - Special Participant
Joseph Cotten ... Himself - Special Participant
Howard Hughes ... Himself (archive footage)
Richard Drewitt Richard Drewitt ... Himself - Associate Producer (as Richard Drewett)
Alexander Welles Alexander Welles ... Special Participant (as Sasa Devcic)
Gary Graver Gary Graver ... Special Participant
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Storyline

Orson Welles' free-form documentary about fakery focusses on the notorious art forger Elmyr de Hory and Elmyr's biographer, Clifford Irving, who also wrote the celebrated fraudulent Howard Hughes autobiography, then touches on the reclusive Hughes and Welles' own career (which started with a faked resume and a phony Martian invasion). On the way, Welles plays a few tricks of his own on the audience. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

fraud | biographer | ibiza | hoax | expert | See All (33) »

Genres:

Documentary

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France | Iran | West Germany

Language:

English | French | Spanish

Release Date:

12 March 1975 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

F for Fake See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

An excerpt of Welles' legendary 1930s 'War of the Worlds' broadcast was recreated for this film; however none of the dialogue heard in the movie actually matches what was originally radio broadcast. See more »

Goofs

The word "practitioners" is misspelled "practioners" in the opening credits. See more »

Quotes

Orson Welles: Our works in stone, in paint, in print, are spared, some of them, for a few decades or a millennium or two, but everything must finally fall in war, or wear away into the ultimate and universal ash - the triumphs, the frauds, the treasures and the fakes. A fact of life: we're going to die. "Be of good heart," cry the dead artists out of the living past. "Our songs will all be silenced, but what of it? Go on singing." Maybe a man's name doesn't matter all that much.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Love (2015) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The masterful legacy of the man who changed the history of modern cinema
17 September 2000 | by Marc AmbitSee all my reviews

"F for fake" stands for the last movie Orson Welles really directed and, as for many artistic legacies it's the final demonstration of the genius of the artist, becoming some kind of briefing of his entire career.

It's hard to explain this movie and why I really enjoyed because, as many other Welles's movies, it's full of surprises and twists.

Filmed as a Documentary, this film introduces us the personae of Elmyr, a painter who lives out of painting copies of famous pictures of Van Gogh, Picasso, Vlaminck and many others and making them look like they're the original one. Welles also introduces to us two more people; an actress and a biographer.

With many resemblances to Welles's own life, the director of such wonderful pieces as "Citizen Kane" and "Touch of Evil" plays with the audience some sort of magical trickery. What is real and what is not? If Elmyr is able to paint a perfect copy of a famous picture and fool the world greatest experts, is he as good artist as the originals he's copying?

Working as a perfect metaphore of Welles own experiences in art (he's not only been movie director but radio speaker and even painter) "F for Fake" remains as a perfect legacy of the ideas of one of the greatest and most gifted cinema artists. Don't miss it!


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