Film through the lens

Film through the lens header image

1st official post – About Mr. K [Blog Challenge#1]

September 22nd, 2011 · 2 Comments · FOR MEDST 144

“Citizen Kane” can be named as a pioneer in that period. It created a new usage of the light/shadow, the low-angle shooting…..There are a lot of scenes worth discussing in ” Citizen Kane” .



First of all, the beginning of the film really impressed me a lot. The appearance of the close-up shot , which is a way the director used to start new scenes in this movie. Then, editors used cutting techniques to zoom in scenes, from the fence, then the gate, the house, finally to the window (below). In this process, the movie creators used hazy and soft scenes to show the abandoned garden, which, in a sense, tell the viewers the result of the movie. The chilling background music also supports to convey this attitude. As the first time viewer, the beginning really makes me chilled.



Secondly, as you can see the photo, the finally focus on the first window. The reason why I don’t put the first window picture  in the former row is that I think the director uses the window to continue the next . Before the window appears, we viewers were guided to walk around the Kane’s cold house. The directors let us understand the general background of the plot. Then, suddenly, the music is interrupted and the light is off, which I think that there will be something new appears. I’m right, the light and the music on again. However, the shot is from inside and the music becomes a little sad. But you can see the window is still the former one. From my point of view, the on and off the light also can mean that the time goes by. In the first time, I don’t know why snow and a ball come out. Later, I realize that these are Kane’s memory of childhood. The ball seems like a hook, to attract the viewers to continue enjoying.

Here, we know the nurse coming inside from the reflection on the crystal ball. I wonder why didn’t they just show the nurse come inside directly. Maybe they wanted to point out that the ball plays an important roll in the movie. I think that the small crystal ball is the little reflection about Mr.Kane’s childhood in the bottom of his heart. As you can see, the topic inside the ball is a small house in a snowy day,  the same scene as  he left his parents when he was so little. What’s more, the giant house which Mr.Kane lives is also a reflection that no matter how rich he is, he just feel lonely. He was not as happy as during the time in his own family. After Susan Alexander left him, he walked between 2 mirrors. It is known to all that 2 mirrors can reflect limitless substances. I think the mirrors here is a way that Mr. Kane come to scan himself. What’s the difference between the boy who played in the snowfield and the rich man who almost got everything he needs? I think that’s also the reason why he just said “rosebud” in the last minute. He misses everything and wants to come back and wants to be a naive boy.

Moreover, the usage of light and angel is very unique. All the irrelevant people are dark or not face to the camera. Meanwhile, some scenes choose close-up or just focus on some points,which is often used here.

While, in some part such as low angle, I feel a little confused. I don’t understand that why they want to use these special angle to shot a movie. what’s the main point?  Although, some angles between Kane and Susan is because that Kane has more rights than Susan. However, What’s the others?

I have a feeling that this movie should have been shot recently because there are so many techniques which our directors are using now.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


2 Comments so far ↓

  • YINI

    First of all, THANKS, Jermal! You are the first one who comments my blog, which encourages me, even my writing sucks……
    Secondly, thanks for the compliment about the crystal ball scene. I didn’t figure out the ball when the nurse came in at first. However, after ruining Alexandra’s room when she left him, the only thing he didn’t destroy is the ball. That makes me think of the importance of the ball.
    Finally, I understand your idea on the mirror scene. Actually, since we have different ideas, you can analyze that scene deeply.

  • jemal

    first off i would like to say that the crystal ball scene was my favorite scene and i was thinking of using it for the blog challenge but i guess i cant now.

    secondly this is a very in depth analysis of my favorite scene.
    ” I think that the small crystal ball is the little reflection about Mr.Kane’s childhood in the bottom of his heart” i completely agree with you, that is a great way to look at it. I cant believe i didnt think of that before, and you see the nurse coming into the small crystal ball maybe trying to show that she has come to try and heal him but in the end, he says rosebud and his small crystal heart&his real heart die. that is a great way.

    As for the mirrors, while i think looking at them in terms of scanning is a great approach, i felt that those mirrors showed emptiness. The mirrors showed him, alone and more and more reflections of him alone, in a great big mansion, him alone, maybe symbolizing how he was always alone since the time of his mother’s betrayal?

You must log in to post a comment.