Analysis Of Orson And The American Dream Into The Pursuit Of Wealth Through Kane

1130 Words May 23rd, 2016 null Page
An individual’s identity is shaped through a complex interaction between internal and external forces which form the basis of one’s values and attitudes. Orson Welles’ revolutionary film Citizen Kane (1941) examines the psychologically damaging effects of internal conflict brought on by parental neglect and the morally corruptive impacts of an unchecked pursuit for power and influence. While a critical analysis may provide insight into these notions, the prevailing notion posited through the film is that the subjectivity of human experiences negates an absolute holistic understanding of an individual’s self-image and position in the world. Hence, Citizen Kane examines the various internal and external forces which contort an individual’s identity.
Welles’ examination of the moral degradation that ensues from a relentless pursuit for power exposes the fragility of human goodness under the pressure of corruptive external forces. Following the Great Depression of the 1930s, Welles criticises the reshaping of the American Dream into the pursuit of wealth through Kane’s characterisation and trajectory as an individual who is seen as successful only because of the large fortune he amasses despite having little insight into his internal state of mind. The bombastic music which accompanies a montage of establishing shots in the introductory biopic newsreel of Charles Kane expresses the grandeur of Kane’s residence, Xanadu, framing Kane as a wealthy and successful individual who has…

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