Visual Effects And Symbolism In "Citizen Kane"

1318 words - 5 pages

"Citizen Kane" is one of the best critically acclaimed films of all time. It is everything a lot of the movies now a day only dream of being. This film is way ahead of it's time in all senses. It uses a non linear approach to the story telling, which is something we've been seeing a lot of recently but was rarely found in films from the forties. The visual and audio elements of this movie are also unbelievable. With all the technology we have now, it's hard to image how Welle's pulled it off in 1941. "Citizen Kane" is definitely a film that proves how a movie can be great with little to no technology available.

The visual aspects of this film are truly amazing. One of things that really caught my eye was the set of Xanadu. When Susan left Kane and she was walking away, the camera caught a great shot that portrayed the massiveness and beauty of the estate. Another part of the film that caught my attention was when the reporters were going through Kane's things in Xanadu and they showed all the things and statues that Kane owned. It was amazing how they were able to show all the stuff Kane had in his estate. The lighting was also a big part of this film. They used a lot of shadowing. For instance, when Kane and Susan were arguing, Kane's shadow completely covered Susan. To me, the use of shadowing in this scene portrayed how much stronger and more important Kane was than Susan. At the beginning of the movie, they also used fishbowl lens. The first scene in the movie where Kane was found dead, most of it was filmed with a fishbowl lens. It gave the introduction of the film a very unique look. I also noticed that they used mirrors in the scene where Kane was walking away from all his servants and guests that witnessed his anger outbreak after Susan left him to make the hallway he was standing at look like it was never ending.

The storyline of the film was told in flashbacks. This is called a nonlinear story line, an approach many current filmmakers use, specifically Quinton Tarentino. I personally prefer a story told this way in a film. I feel that using this approach puts more emphasis on the plot and the main character. It enhances the storyline and is easier to follow the details that are important to some films. Using the nonlinear approach in "Citizen Kane" gives it a more unique story line and portrays Kane's life in a way that makes it easier to understand his struggles and emotions. I do not believe it makes it more difficult for an audience to follow as long as they are focusing on the movie. The problem with this type of storytelling approach is that if one doesn't pay close attention to the movie, one can miss out on a lot of important details in the movie. For example, at the beginning of this film, clues are given to the fact that "Rosebud" is the sleigh. If one isn't paying close attention to those little details, one would miss out on the clues given.

Most of the main characters in this film are funny and sort of like...

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