Wednesday, December 16, 2009



Orson Welles (May 6, 1915 – October 10, 1985) was a self-described “director, producer, actor, impresario, writer, artist, magician, star of stage, screen and radio, and a pretty fair singer”. Noted for his innovative dramatic productions as well as his distinctive voice and personality, Welles is widely acknowledged as one of the most accomplished dramatic artists of the 20th century. He is well-known for radio adaptation of H.G. Wells’ novel The War of the Worlds which aired on October 30, 1938. Presented as a series of news bulletins interrupting the musical performance the program caused widespread panic as many listeners thought an actual Martian invasion was in progress. His first two films, Citizen Kane (released in 1941) and The Magnificent Ambersons (1942), are considered by many as two of the greatest films ever made. His best known television commercial had the memorable tagline "We will sell no wine before its time".

Zac Efron: 17-year-old hopeful thespian Richard Samuels
Zoe Kazan: aspiring author Gretta Adler
Christian McKay: 22-year-old Orson Welles
Claire Danes: 20-year-old Production Assistant Sonja Jones
Eddie Marsan: Producer John Houseman
Kelly Reilly: leading lady Muriel Brassler
Joseph Cotton: leading man James Tupper

This one is for the sophisticated movie-goer, particularly those steeped in the classics and having an interest in one of the great personages of our time. By showing how Welles put together his now-famous stage production of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar we also get to see something of the man’s character.

The trouble is a significant amount of screen time is devoted to excerpts of the modern-dress adaptation of the play set in Mussolini's Italy. Unless you are very familiar with the play these scenes are all very confusing. Fans of Shakespeare will love the movie; non fans less so.

for sexual references and smoking.

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