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Summer Classic Movies: Citizen Kane

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A former contributor to these very pages lived and died by one motto: Don't miss the legends. A film geek could take that saying one step further: Don't miss the legends on the big screen. Movies like Citizen Kane didn't get to where they are -- in this particular case, atop the American Film Institute's list of the best American movies of all time -- by being screened on VCR and DVD players. No, they were first viewed in their proper scope. And what of Citizen Kane, anyway? Is Orson Welles' 1941 deconstruction of the American Dream all it's been cracked up to be over these many years -- the reflexive "best-ever" pick everyone says it is? Or is it just a breakout film that showcased Welles as a triple threat: writer, director and star? It's hard to say without viewing it at full scale, where we can see some of the sharpest editing in the history of cinema and where the whispered word, "Rosebud," reveals its deeper meaning. Citizen Kane kicks off the Saenger's annual Summer Classic Movies series, which will be followed this weekend by Victor Fleming's 1939 classic, The Wizard of Oz (2 p.m. Saturday) and Frank Capra's 1944 work, Arsenic and Old Lace (7:30 p.m. Saturday). Two weeks later we'll be treated to A Streetcar Named Desire, My Fair Lady and Breakfast at Tiffany's. Tickets $5 adults, $4.50 seniors/kids ages 12-under

7:30 p.m. Friday, June 24
Saenger Theatre, 143 Rampart St., 524-2490; www.saengertheatre.com

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