Monthly Feature

The Films of Orson Welles


Every Thursday in May at 7:00pm | Regular Admission Prices

Where to begin with Orson Welles, a man with a talent and imagination so prodigious that he spanned radio, film, television, literature and theater, excelling in them all? From his first film masterpiece Citizen Kane – frequently hailed as one of the greatest films ever made – to his checkered career fighting for funding and creative control to realize his directorial vision, Welles stands alone, holding a special place in the pantheon of cinematic greats.

“A film is never really good unless the camera is an eye in the head of a poet.” – Orson Welles

Welles himself made the self-deprecating remark, “I began at the top and have been working my way down ever since,” – referring to the popular misconception that his post-Kane career somehow never delivered on his initial promise. In reality, Welles delivered again and again on that promise, in such dazzling and unexpected ways that audiences, critics and other filmmakers are still trying to catch up. How else can one describe a career that encompasses such films as The Magnificent Ambersons, The Lady from Shanghai, Othello, Chimes at Midnight, Touch of Evil, The Trial, an astonishingly rich legacy of television (including “The Fountain Of Youth”), as well as legendary “unfinished” films such as The Other Side of the Wind and Don Quixote? Although he had to jump through bigger and bigger hoops to secure financing for his movies, dealing with an industry used to mediocrity, he somehow managed to create and place his art in the public eye for over four decades. A brilliantly dramatic actor (with a larger-than-life personality that easily guided him into the realm of “celebrity”), always delivering a droll performance with seemingly little effort, he was a genius director, capable of creating works that were simultaneously tragic, elegiac, lyrical, satirical, playfully surreal and pulpy, miraculously managing to integrate all these traits into a style that is immediately recognizable as “Welles-ian.” On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of his birth (born May 6, 1915), The Loft Cinema is proud to present a month-long tribute to the one-and-only Orson Welles.

May’s Reel Reads Selection! Purchase a copy of My Lunches with Orson by Peter Biskind during the month of May and receive a special “Loft Reel Reads” discount off the cover price – 20% for Loft members and 10% for the general public. Copies of the book are available at The Loft Cinema and Antigone Books.