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Parents' Guide to

The Magnificent Welles

By Nell Minow, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

A fascinating look at Orson Welles.

Movie NR 2003 93 minutes
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Always entertaining and impressively put together, this is a fascinating look at arguably the most fascinating figure in the history of American film. Wolland is obviously intrigued by Welles, (who can blame him?) and his intrigue helps him slide right into the part. His script is convincing and well-researched, and his own energy, talent, and ambition in the theatre world, as well as his physical resemblance, feels like you're spending an evening with the man himself.

Wolland gives an in-depth analysis of most of Welles' life and projects, focusing on how Charles Foster Kane was a mockery of Welles himself among others and captivating the audience with his stories about his famous theatrical woes in his all-black cast of Macbeth and his anti-establishment Cradle Will Rock. He lets us in on several entertaining behind the scenes stories that are far too absurd to have been made up. Near the show's dismaying conclusion, the defeated Welles talks about how on stage if he touches just one person he has reached "an ultimate communication" and it is worth it to him. Consider it done, Mr. Wolland.

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