From the artistic peaks of “Citizen Kane” and “The Magnificent Ambersons” to that infamous recording of a frozen peas commercial, Orson Welles ran the full spectrum from the sublime to the ridiculous. Often treated with scorn and ridicule by the critics during his peak years, today he is beloved for his wild and tumultuous career output. Facebook’s funniest guy, Anthony “The Kingfish” Vitamia, returns to “The Online Movie Show” to talk about Orson’s amazing life. This is THE ultimate Orson Welles show that you need to hear!
The episode can be heard here.
“The Online Movie Show” is produced at the Platinum Wolfe Studios.
“You’re faced with a grave responsibility, ladies and gentlemen…”
One of my favorite scenes of “12 Angry Men” is in fact the opening. Sidney Lumet doesn’t so much provide exposition as he lays out the basic rule of the premise. These twelve men don’t have to abide by story conventions so much as they have to abide by the law and a strict principle about judging someone during this horrible trial. The question soon becomes how far will these men stretch these laws and principals to fit their own agendas? What will keep them biased and subjective in a case that requires a clear thought and analytical mind? The opening shot features the young boy in question transposed over the establishing shot of the empty jury room where his fate lies. He’s a young, minority, juvenile delinquent, with a violent past and his life lies in the hands of twelve strangers. Worse is that these twelve strangers have their own vendettas. His cards are stacked against him immediately since the trial has drawn on for weeks in to the hottest day of the year. The jurors were, presumably, chosen for their ability to put aside their own personal preferences to judge a case, but once Sidney Lumet puts these twelve men in a room together, it soon becomes apparent everyone has arrived with their goals in mind. It’s a group of the worst and best of America.
It’s not too often we’re granted a major motion picture with an all star cast that presents audience with such a subversive undertone of family and maternal struggles. It wasn’t up until this year that I learned “Rosemary’s Baby” comes from author Ira Levin who wrote “The Stepford Wives.” The latter work of fiction is a brilliant and horrifying look at the male animal struggling to repress the rising tide of feminism and women’s liberation across Western civilization through very shocking means. As the women of an elite group of men branch out seeking independence and liberation from home life, the men eventually form their plan to replace their women robotic drones that are perfectly content living the life of a subservient being whose goal is to please sexually and domestically.