Tag Archives: Orson Welles

The Diary of a Chambermaid (1964)

Of the four adaptations of Octave Mirbeau’s controversial novel, Luis Buñuel’s version is by far the most faithful… and radical.

Full Metal Jacket

Many great auteurs use similar styles to explore similar themes as lesser filmmakers. The only real difference is that great auteurs are more consistent and precise.

Nosferatu

Long before it was revered as a masterpiece, F.W. Murnau’s radical reimagining of Bram Stoker’s classic vampire novel had to be saved from the furnaces.

Munich

Upon its release, Munich was attacked for historical inaccuracy, political naivety and moral equivalency. But it is one of Spielberg’s greatest works.

Yi Yi

As the title to Edward Yang’s masterpiece indicates, Yi Yi is a series of doubles; narrative, thematic, visual and aural, that deliver a subtle family portrait.

Bicycle Thieves

Many films enjoy exaggerated reputations, but it is almost impossible to underestimate the beauty, truth and importance of Vittorio De Sica’s Bicycle Thieves.

Ida

In ancient Greece, all violence took place off stage. How can filmmakers show the violence of the Holocaust without exploiting the memory of the victims?

La Ronde

Released in 1950, Max Ophuls’ adaptation of Arthur Schnitzler’s scandalous play is a landmark exhibition of theme and style operating in perfect harmony.

The Rules of the Game

Reviled and banned upon its release, then seemingly destroyed and lost forever, Jean Renoir’s The Rules of the Game stands today as a victory for liberalism.

Le Mépris

When it comes to making movies about making movies, many directors choose to venerate the medium. Not Jean-Luc Godard. He treats it with contempt.

Great Openings – Part One

What makes for a great opening? Character? Conflict? Poetry? Hopefully, more than something we’re supposed to just look at.

A.I.: Artificial Intelligence

It is incorrectly assumed that Steven Spielberg turned Stanley Kubrick’s dark story into another of his child-friendly fantasies.

Writers

All films begin at a keyboard. But whether the film is about screenwriters, journalists, novelists or composers, how does cinema depict the art of writing?

Touch of Evil

Orson Welles is often referred to as a glistening talent who wasted his early promise. Touch of Evil, the last film he made in America, proves otherwise.

Great Sounds – Part Two

The world is so noisy, we unconsciously filter out all that we don’t want to hear. Much of film sound operates in the same way.

The Age of Innocence

Best known for his crime dramas, Martin Scorsese’s adaptation of Edith Wharton’s romantic novel, The Age of Innocence is one of his most incisive works.

Tokyo Story

On the surface Yasujiro Ozu’s examination of family life in post-war Japan may sound simple, but what he delivered is one of cinema’s supreme achievements.

Great Shots – Part One

What makes for a great shot? Beauty? The lens? Lighting? Combine them and you have something that amounts to more than just an image.

M

In terms of genre, few films are as influential film as Fritz Lang’s M. Where would The French Connection, LA Confidential and Se7en be without it?

The Maltese Falcon

John Huston’s film of Dashiell Hammett’s classic novel was the third adaptation of the hard-boiled mystery. How did he succeed where others had failed?

Rashomon

Akira Kurosawa’s Rashomon is celebrated for asking what is truth. Which is more than a little ironic, because that’s not what it is really about.

The Magnificent Ambersons

Orson Welles is celebrated for Citizen Kane but it was this adaptation of Booth Tarkington’s novel that defined his career.

Citizen Kane

Orson Welles’ debut feature is now a quarter of a century old. Have we been taking its greatness for granted or is it time for reappraisal?

Great Scenes – Part Two

What makes for a great scene? Performance? Conflict? Dialogue? Visuals? Music? Combine them and you have atomic weight.

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