Since I really want to move onto Stanley Kubrick next week, I’m gonna condense all of the awesome things that Orson did in this one post.
Without question, Orson’s greatest talents was his orating skills. His directing career topped out with his first movie, Citizen Kane, and his acting career was a means for him to make enough money in order to finance his own movies so that he could direct them. It must’ve been sad life, really.
He did a lot of television, back in the day. My favorite short story was Fountain of Youth.
He also did some teevee for the UK, in what was called “Sketchbook”. This series is absolutely brilliant. Here is one episode.
Then there was his encounter with Ernest Hemingway. How awesome is this?
Orson pissed off doing demeaning commercials for peas.
Another one of my favorite moves is The Stranger, starring Orson and another favorite of mine Edward G. Robinson, who was prominently featured as the mobster in the Bugs Bunny cartoons.
Here is the entire movie, definitely a film noir classic. This is about a story of an FBI agent (Robinson) in search of runaway Nazis (Welles), post WW2.
But, without question, the single best acting scene of Orson’s long career was in the movie Compulsion. Just watch it and see for yourself. “Are we crazy?!”
Then there was that magical scene of Orson describing Chartres. This especially resonates with me, being that I value my anonymity.
If you want to see a movie about Orson, but not with Orson, I strongly recommend seeing Me and Orson Welles.
Christian Mckay nailed Orson, truly great.
And then there’s that guy from youtube who does hilarious movie reviews, as Orson.
Other Welles films of note are The Black Rose (co-starring another Hollywood legend who died young, Tyrone Powers. Oh, it also featured Orson Welles as a Chinese man.), Black Magic (good movie with Welles as a practitioner of Black Magic), Mr. Arkadian (lol), The Trial (based on the famous novel by Franz Kafka, an absolute must see for students of the law), Chimes at Midnight (Shakespeare, directed by Welles), Lady from Shanghai (featuring Orson with an absurd Irish accent), The Long Hot Summer (starring Welles and Paul Newman) and Transformers.
Did I just say Transformers? Damn right I did. It was his last role before he died. What better way to bookend your career, from Citizen Kane to Unicron.
Finally, I’ve been watching some comedy roasts recently, all vulgar demonstrations of human depravity. Back in the old days, when people had class, roasts were done like this, a la Welles:
And here is Sinatra saluting Welles (how fucking cool is that?)