The Instigator
yanksfan1987
Pro (for)
Tied
19 Points
The Contender
left_wing_mormon
Con (against)
Tied
19 Points

Citizen Kane is over-rated

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/27/2008 Category: Arts
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 3,288 times Debate No: 2960
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
Votes (10)

 

yanksfan1987

Pro

Citizen Kane has been long argued as "The Greatest Film of All Time", I am quite hesistant in this theory, I think it is a masterpiece and American cinema owes a great debt to it. People think it's long and boring, but I've never once been bored by it. Films are subjective, but scholars around the film community all declare its importance and brilliance in every spectrum of film imaginable.

Being over-rated I guess would mean that if its a consensus Number 1 film, and I don't think its the best American Film. I think The Godfather is a better film, but that is beside the point. So under this view I have, I would have to say although magnificent and beneficial to film all around the world, Citizen Kane is the most talked about American film, and its a revolutionary film, and a wonderful film. Roger Ebert once said "If there is one American film you should see, it's Citizen Kane." I can understand this point, but by that jurisdiction, I don't think its a matter of it being the best film, but maybe the most important. And I think their is a difference in the two.
left_wing_mormon

Con

We both have a great deal of respect for the film at hand, "Citizen Kane".

We are talking American film at its finest! Hollywood has dealt with alot of crap movies over the years, and I feel that the only film that was perfect in every department (screenplay, acting, storyline, hell, even the music) is and always will be "Citizen Kane".

After saying that I must admit, it is not my all time favorite movie. Like you said teh Godfather was excellent, as well as titles such as "The Color Purple", "Nosferatu", and "Casablancea" to name a few.

However, if American Film is the the topic at hand, by all standards of film, Citizen Kane is not overrated. I can say "The Godfather" is the best film ever made, for example, but it will always be lacking compared to the standards Citizen Kane presented.

Frnakly, most people here probaly have never seen the film, so in my opinion it isn't rated enough!
Debate Round No. 1
yanksfan1987

Pro

From a technical aspect, this film is astounding! It really is. The amount of technical skill that is put into the film, it really blows the mind. Almost every shot is constructed brilliantly. The use of light and focus and matte paintings and camera movement is simply awesome. The camera here moves like a relentlessy and its always unsetteling in its movement The use of shadow, reflection, sound effects. All are in Sync to make a fine film.

There is a flaw in this film, and it's probably the most basic flaw we all see: this film (I just watched it last night again to make sure I hadn't gone off the looney bin) is utterly melodramatic at times. They often remind me a Soap Opera in terms of emotions on screen. Now to me, every scene in The Godfather, The Searchers, and even Taxi Driver are virtually flawless. It's sometimes a little a little too overwhelming. It has some lapses in logic ("The desert coast of Florida?"). Sure, it looks great and it moves briskly. But still. Shouldn't the greatest film of all time have a better framework to hang all this on? And basing it as the greatest film of all time like we both have someone agreed to it being decided, it's over-rated, because its not that good. I would think Nosferatu and other films that advance the median and change the way films are made are yes influential, as is Kane, but their not considered the best. Kane is. And for that, I simply believe it is over-rated. Citizen Kane is shown in film classes simply for it's breakthroughs, and many contemporary film goers don't see it, but they know it, they know "Rosebud" so I doubt its under-appreciated. Critically, they love it.
left_wing_mormon

Con

You make a valid point. My question to you is, what do you think the best film ever made was? Story, depth, art, ect., all taken into account.

You wanna know my favorite film? If you said no, than skip the following sentance, if you said yes, than continue. I think Charlie Cahplins movie "The Kid" is and forever will be the best movie ever made.

See, what we consider the best is fine. But according to the standards that American Cinema has today, and ever since Kan and Casablanca premiered, Citizen Kane remains an all around "perfect" movie. You mention the flaws, which believe me, I have noticed one or two myself, but look at the GodFather for example. Great film. It will have a safe 3 or even 2 on my favorite movie list. However, I can't feel any remorse for the death of Sonny, because of his adultry. That to me, destroys his character. You can't relate to him. You start to think he deserves to die for doing that to his wife, and then we are supposed to weep when he is killed? This is a bigger problem to me than a boom-mike showing or something :)...

I know that Citizen Kane can't be whatched three times a day like "Some Like it Hot", but it isn't overrated. To me overrated is something that is glorified but frankly, sucks. The latest P.Diddy album or the latest Jessica Simpson movie, or Dane Cook are all perfect examples. We can agree that Citizen Kane remains as ONE OF the most well done films in history.

I think our deffinitions of "Over Rated" are different. I will be interested in seeing your closing argument (a.k.a. your favorite film) lol
Debate Round No. 2
yanksfan1987

Pro

The Kid is a solid example of a film, and its an under-rated in that.

You say we differ in over-rated

"rated too highly" is what dictionary.com has for it's definition. Let's for example, dwell into that definition. You and I both have said its not the best movie ever made..But critics and others easily consider it the best movie ever made. I think its rated too highly. I think its an important film, but I don't think its the greatest film ever...My FAVORITE Film is the 1998 film "The Truman Show", for me, I can watch that movie every day and enjoy not only Phillip Glass's tremendous score, but the actual emotion invoked in all performances. Do I think its the greatest film of all-time? No. I do not want to make that assessment about any film, and if I do, with hesitance. When it comes to Citizen Kane, I have major hesitance of listing is as one. Personally, I find The Godfather, Raging Bull, and even Schindler's List a better film.

So I have to close up with some more substance, I imagine. By saying it is over-rated should not diminish the fact its a tremendously important film, is it the most important American film? Perhaps, but Importance is so subjective. Psycho was very important in stylizing a genre. Animal House was the same way too. Orson Welles does a fantastic job of getting this done, along with solid acting and Tolland's wonderful work behind the camera. However, I will say this and say it again: I think it is rated too highly in context of American films, and in the scheme of things, film in general. I'd take Rashomon over it any day. Thank you for your time.
left_wing_mormon

Con

Thank you very much for the debate. You are obviuosly very fimliar with real film. You mentioned some great examples of great movies. Schindler's List, Raging Bull, the Godfather. I can name amazing movies too. Taxi, The Muse, The Lion King, I mean without a doubt there are great movies out there and they are....just great!

But the standards that you and I have for a good movie can be applied to Citizen Kane and it fits perfect. The film has captured the emotion of every actor in it, and it told a story through the faces and music. The props even! lol

Well I really said all I can say defending it. You need to take the film in context. Yes for the time it was innovative for cinema, but isn't the film to this day just as captivating?

Well I don't know, I hope you reconsider. And by the way, Truman Show was an awsome movie. A Jim Carrey film I can sit through...I would love to debate you again on an issue. Thank You
Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by Off_the_Wall.Paul 9 years ago
Off_the_Wall.Paul
This argument has potential, but this semantics presented here are distortive.
Posted by friar_zero 9 years ago
friar_zero
Your argument is based on semantics of best and most important. A semantic argument is not entertaining of intellectually satisfying for me, so I will decline. However, i will say one thing. I think that Citizen Kane is the definitive american film. It sums up everything americans strive for, pretend to, and regret at the time it was made. Just my opinion. Personally, my favorite movie is the original Lion in Winter.
Posted by Kleptin 9 years ago
Kleptin
I have also seen Citizen Kane and I think I agree. We should also think about this though: Citizen Kane is studied in film classes because it made some revolutionary breakthroughs that are probably used so commonly today, we wouldn't be able to appreciate it.

I'm going to follow this debate. I hope someone includes information on what these breakthroughs are.
10 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by sakskidz 3 years ago
sakskidz
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Reasons for voting decision: Con wins
Vote Placed by pcmbrown 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by Phoebe 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by Olhando 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by polishgirlinar 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by bigbass3000 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by Derek.Gunn 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by priest1387 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by yanksfan1987 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by left_wing_mormon 9 years ago
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