Movie Analysis, 4 pages (950 words)

Film analysis of citizen kane essay

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When looking at the film Citizen Kane, it uses miss-en-scene to help paint a better picture throughout the film. Miles-en-scene, better known as staging, Is the overall look and feel of a movie (Barras; Ammonia p. 542) The first example that comes to mind when thinking about is when Charles Kane Foster is running for office, he is giving a speech and in the background is a large poster of his face. For the majority of the film there are very few shots taken where Kane is not present somehow or someway, which really drives home the idea that he is this larger than life figure.

He feels that he Is unstoppable and very powerful, but the Idea that he Is In nearly every shot shows us that without having to say It.

Another great example Is that the film Is shot from mostly, a low angle. This Is Important In the film, especially when it comes to Mr.. Kane, because it gives him this larger than life persona. Kane viewed from a low angle gives us this view of him being powerful, and important, something we learn by Just looking at the film. Throughout the film we see a change in Mr.

. Fosters’ second wife, and the use of design and miss-en-scene tell the story of he toll life has taken on Miss Alexander.

When we first meet Susan, the cinematographer uses a nice design trick to show her young lively nature. The scene where Mr.. Wells goes to Miss Alexander apartment, they cast a soft light on Mr.

. Kane giving him more of a grayish quality, showing his age, and in my opinion his increasingly dark character. Meanwhile, they hit Miss Alexander with a hard light to show her youth, and innocence. Towards the end of the film, after Cane’s passing we see Susan drinking herself into oblivion, but what Is key here Is not the dialogue as much as how we see her.

First, the camera comes In at a high-angle portraying her as small, visually showing us that this is obviously not a high point for her, and she Is miserable.

Next they use a soft light on her to show us that she has aged, and that time has passed. The use of makeup also reveals that time has not been kind to her, she now has large bags under her eyes, and looks overall disheveled. In the beginning of the film, we get a view of Charles Kane as a young boy. He is happily playing outside, however Inside we see that his mother Is getting ready to sign papers and give him away to Mr..

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Thatcher. The scene where the three adults are at the table, In the foreground we see Mrs.. Kane ready to sign the papers, the middle ground is where Mr..

Thatcher is waiting patiently, and lastly in the background is Mr.. Kane. This framing tells us a lot about the characters. By placing Mrs.

. Kane in the fore ground, it tells the audience that she is important, and that she is in charge. She is the person who is making all the decisions and all of the money is being signed over to her, so placing her Into the fore ground drives home the fact that she “ wears the pants In this house.

The placement of Mr..

Thatcher In the middle ground conveys much of what we are hearing in the dialogue. He is working closely with Mrs.. Kane and he is trusted by her. It shows us that these two have a good working relationship and they are on the same page. The most outstanding placement is that of Mr.

. Kane. He is placed in the background, and it visually tells us what we have already interpreted thorough the dialogue. Mr.. Kane Is the outsider, he has no say In the transaction that Is taking place In his home, and his concerns the Inquirer’s celebration dinner.

In this particular scene dancers have come out and are parading around the room putting on a show and Charles Kane gets up and is dancing with them. There is a shot where Mr.. Leland and Mr.. Bernstein are having a quiet conversation about the choices that Kane has Just made, and the framing of this shot gives us an important insight.

Occupying the left third of the shot is Mr.. Leland, while Mr.. Bernstein takes up the right third. The importance is dead in the center of the shot, we see Charles Kane, although he is not actively taking part in the conversation, he is still in the shot.

This was no mistake, it simply portrays his importance, and although his friends/coworkers are not sure of his decision it shows that he is on top, driving home his importance and dominance. The film uses a lot of film movement to show the audience an abundance of details without saying them. One trick that I really liked in the film was the seamless movement through objects. Many of the objects were “ fixed” to create an illusion that the camera goes through it, and it really adds to the movie.

The movie also uses tilt shots in a few spots to, create a more dramatic effect.

In one scene when Charles Kane is finishing the review of his wife’s new Opera, we see a close up shot of the back of the typewriter, then the camera tilts up to show Cane’s face, which gives us a clue as to what will unfold in the following moments. The use of a zoom is also important in the film, and to me the most important at the end of the film. We are taken to the incinerator, where they are burning all of Cane’s possessions, and then in a final zoom shot we see the word Rosebud. This finally gives us the answer we have been looking for all along.

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