"Ehh or meh.."

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"If I hadn't been rich, I would have been a great man"
Charles Foster Kane, Citizen Kane

While I do not feel that the movie lived up to its reputation as "the greatest motion picture of all time", there is something to be said about the lessons it can teach us about money and power. During the final scene, I was still at a loss for what the significance of "Rosebud" was. And then I thought about it: Rosebud was a remanent of Kane's childhood, of his happy past. In fact, he had been playing with it when Mr Thatcher came to take him away. Mrs Kane just gave away her son to be groomed for sucess, with hardly any remorse I might add. If I were a child and some strange man told me he was taking me away to live with him right in front of my parents, I would have expected some protestation from them. But no, she let her son go, thinking that the money would make him a better person. Mrs Kane was wrong.

All kane ever wanted was to be loved. All he knew was money. Money, he believed, could bring happiness. Therfor, he showered his wife Susan with gifts, believing money=happiness. But money is not everything; Susan wanted to know him. She wanted Kane to open up and give himself to her, but, as she put it:

"you don't love me! you want me to love you"

Kane could never love anyone because he had never been loved himself. The people who were supposed to love him, his parents, just let him go off with this strange man. Little 10 year old Charles seemed pretty content on that farm. His mind was probably warped when this happened, twisted into thinking that his parents never loved him. Maybe, he felt, that he was not worthy of being loved or that he had done something to make his parents stop loving him. I would have a pretty low opinion of myself too. Being loved means that you arer worth something to someone. Perhaps if Kane had not been thrown into the world of the rich, we would have turned out to be a generous and caring man. But money can have a strange affect on a person, turning them into a greedy selfish monster.

So, Rosebud was a symbol of love: the last time Kane had ever felt loved.

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2 Comments

That's a good insight. I never thought of that while I was watching the movie. It does make sense. I remember one of the characters--Leeland, I think--told the reporter that Kane wanted everyone to love him...that that's why he ran for office.

Rosebud is the only element that had connected Kane to the rest of the population. I think that by him remembering Rosebud, holding on to a life he was entitled to before his megalomania.

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