All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1167. An easy way of seeing how…
F for Fake
A documentary about fraud and fakery.
In 1977 when I was living in Orson Welles' garage, he let me watch his personal print of F for Fake. Here is an excerpt from the review I published at the time: img18.imageshack.us/img18/2886/rd1h.jpg
Well. Uh... This was a documentary.
My brain is fucked
Ladies and gentleman, by way of introduction, this is a film about trickery, fraud, about lies.
- Orson Welles
Oh Mr Welles you are a genius. It could very easily have slipped into self-indulgence and it's a work of genius that it doesn't. It's a film that points out the fallibility of so called art appraisers, so many examples are given of professionals incorrectly recognising originals and fakes. We have to question to what degree we should value an original over an exact copy, after all, they both look the same so what's the difference?
For lack of a better description, F for Fake is essentially a film about fraud and fakery. Welles speaks to Elmyr de Hory and recounts…
I started at the top and have been working my way down ever since.
I couldn't understand why people would call this a "film essay" as apposed to a documentary. Now that I've seen it, I clearly understand the distinction, but I'll be damned if I could explain it to anyone. It's less a documentary and more like overhearing a conversation at a party. You have Orson Welles telling you a story, almost as it comes to him, in the most entertaining way he knows how.
The film really does feel like a half hazard conversation that Welles is telling you as he remembers random facts, but it's too expertly put together to REALLY be so random. Sure…
Deception. Illusion. Fakery
FINISHED FILES ARE THE RE-
SULT OF YEARS OF SCIENTIF-
IC STUDY COMBINED WITH THE
EXPERIENCE OF YEARS.
How many F's are there?
Most people see 3, but there are actually 6.
If there is absolutely nothing else to take away from this film but the fact that it is a masterclass in editing, that would be more than enough to walk away with fulfilled. You could actually not pay any mind at all to the words being said, just letting the amalgam of sight and sound wash over you, and it would still be a thrill.
I honestly thought it was fictional for the first twenty minutes or so, until Welles brought up his radio beginnings and Citizen Kane. Then again, maybe it was. I seriously don't know anymore. Did Citizen Kane actually happen, or was it only made with the foresight that it would fit in with the many hoaxes…
In 1974 Welles would release his last completed film; "F For Fake."
Part documentary, part fiction feature, part film essay, Welles described it as “a new kind of film.” He would be correct. The editing is masterful. For better or worse it would influence untold works through the subsequent years.
The quick editing was new at the time. Of course it has been copied much since. Often to good effect; often not. Rarely as good as in "F For Fake."
F for Fake is a documentary of sorts about lies and tricks. It tells us is going to be honest with us, how much you believe it or how much do you care about that honesty is up to you.
Despite being not very long, 88 minutes, it feels slow, is incredibly self indulgent, and overly proud of itself, as Welles itself was as well as many of his works. But that pretentiousness and ego are not unfounded, the movie is entrancing, experimental for it's time, and despite the pace holds your attention in one way or another.
Is easy to understand why some people don't like it, and the poor reception it had when released, but is also very easy to see the beauty of the film, be it for the story, the way the people on it are portrayed or it's clever and crooked intentions and nature.
Orson Welles' essay film "F for Fake" is an honest tale of fakery, tricks, deception, and lies. One of the most thought-provoking films I've seen in a while. HIGHLY recommended.
In his youth, Orson Welles would travel around Ireland on a horse and cart, trying to sell paintings. After failing to make a career as a painter, Welles went to a theater in Dublin, claiming to be a famous actor from New York. Thus began his acting career.
That's pretty badass.
F For Fake is a kind-of documentary. If it is, it's one of the best documentaries I've ever seen. Mostly because it goes directly against the anti-cinematic conventions of documentaries. The typical "talking heads" of the genre, wherein we just watch the head-and-shoulders of a few people being interviewed, perhaps inter-cut with still pictures or something. F For Fake does not do this.
F For Fake is made up…
"Maybe a man's name doesn't matter all that much."
An exceptionally enjoyable piece of bullshit. The editing is really fun and the subject matter is intriguing enough, but I suspect that one's appreciation for this documentary (some have argued that it's really more of a filmed essay of sorts) rests almost entirely on how much fondness one has for Welles himself. I find him endlessly fascinating. Even when I was rolling my eyes at his pompous poetry readings and cape-wearing, I was grinning ear to ear. I would gladly spend another hour or two in his company, listening to that voice.
Thoughtful, mesmerizing, and playful. I could listen to Welles speak all day.
Some movies have to do a lot of legwork to make you like them. Some movies are F For Fake. Spending an hour and a half watching Orson Welles talk about anything kinda sells itself, and this movie has us watch him talk about anything and everything. The fact that the film is entertaining on just that base level, and takes montage editing to a new level, and explores the concepts of art and the artist, and navigates a twisty forest of interlocking stories and ideas in a stunning rollercoaster ride of a film? Astounding.
If I had to identify a flaw, it’s one that’s sort of nebulous even to me; for whatever reason I’ve never found the Picasso/Oja Kodar…
I'm pretty sure he's talking to hollywood, but it's written in such a way that his ideas transcend any fact.
- A Trip to the Moon
- The Great Train Robbery
- The Birth of a Nation
- Les Vampires
- My Neighbor Totoro
- Grave of the Fireflies
- Final Cut - Ladies & Gentlemen
- For All Mankind
Great 60-90 min films (for those days when you just don't have the energy to watch a 3 hour masterpiece)
Doesn't the title of the list explain it well enough? This is a list of 200+ quality "short" films. Easy…
- Citizen Kane
- 2001: A Space Odyssey
- Tokyo Story
- The Rules of the Game