The differing endings between Citizen Kane and Singin’ in the Rain acknowledge the dramatic effect an ending has on a narrative. The films end with different degrees of closure, resulting in contrasting moods of the resolutions to the narrative.
Singin’ in the Rain highlights the discrepancy between reality and Hollywood glam through the narrative of the musical. Don Lockwood, the male protagonist, has conflicting values regarding a life of reality with his love, Kathy Seldon, and a forged life of fame and glory. When Kathy, an ordinary citizen, secretly becomes the back up singer for the famous Lina Lamont, the audience knows the truth that is hidden from the majority of the characters. The patterns of narration leave the audience with a desire for the characters to know this hidden truth. This unrestricted range of information about the narrative creates a satisfying conclusion, as Don reveals the gratifying truth about Kathy’s singing. The high degree of closure in the ending leaves the audience with a complete sense of satisfaction, as the conflicts of the plot are pleasantly resolved and the characters are fully aware of what the audience knows.
On the other hand, Citizen Kane employs a different conclusion to the patterns of narration. The film revolves around an investigation of Kane’s last word, “Rosebud.” The narrative creates a sense of suspense and curiosity as Jerry Thompson, a news reporter, investigates Kane’s life in an attempt to solve the “Rosebud” mystery. Throughout the film, the restricted range of information permits the audience to know only what the characters know as well. However, the end of the film alters the range of information provided to the audience, while maintaining the knowledge of the characters.
Cinematography is an important tool that...