Monday, June 16, 2014
Mike's Story Part 52 - Rosebud
Citizen Kane is the story of a newspaper magnate who, while publishing a rag that was the diametric antithesis of FTW, bore some superficial resemblance to Mike. The film's director, the legendary Orson Welles, said, "Kane was selfish and selfless, an idealist, a scoundrel, a very big man and a very little one. It depends on who's talking about him."
Kane dies uttering the mysterious word, "rosebud." In the belief that uncovering the meaning of the word will provide an "open sesame" to the man's life, the editor of a news digest sets out to interview former associates of the newspaper giant to see what light they can shed.
He never learns the significance of the word, but the audience does, by means of a zoom in to a close-up in the last minute of the film: It was the brand name of Kane's sled when he was a child and taken from his mother to be "adopted" by a bank and groomed for his career. "Rosebud," then, symbolizes the last time in Kane's life that he was simply happy.
There is a situation in Mike's life which may perform the same service as Rosebud but it is not a happy memory.