“Behind every great man lies a story untold.”
Watch the original version of Citizen Kane
In the wake of Charles Foster Kane’s death, the world eagerly awaited the reading of his will. A victor of newspaper battles, political wars, and social conquests, Kane was a man whose wealth and power knew no bounds. His legacy still resonates through the years, and in many ways remains a mystery – with the lingering question: What or who was “Rosebud”?
Chapter 1: The Arrival
When Charles Foster Kane was just eight years old, his mother took him on a picnic near their Colorado cabin. Left alone to play on a sled, he slips and drops it, much to his mother’s amusement. She beckons him for breakfast, but as they eat, a lawyer arrives unexpectedly with astonishing news: Kane’s father had discovered a fortune in gold in their property and arranged for young Charley’s care by a trusted friend. Wanting her son with her, Charlotte lights the bundle of legal documents, cutting off their future fortune.
Fast forward a few years, it’s a cold winter’s day in New York City, and Kane is at the beautiful, but solitary, pleasure palace he calls his boyhood home. He is surrounded by his eclectic collection of treasures, including a complete statue gallery at the property of antiquities he acquired on his travels around continental Europe.
Kane’s palatial mansion is vast and tastefully decorated. The hallways are lined with jaw-dropping artwork and sculptures. He’s an accomplished sculptor himself, with some of his own works displayed prominently. The common areas are luxurious, with sumptuous fabrics and textures.
Charley Kane is in need of meeting his new legal guardian. However, his curiosity attracted him by curiosity to witness a public event. Going back to the manor, Mr. Thatcher finds him playing with a model airplane. Introducing Chairman Walter Parks and appointing Kane’s financial interests into his closest control, they tour the world in need of Charley’s celebrity upbringing.
The arrival announcement from Kaplan reveals the presence of a trusted individual, a motherly presence to approach Kane secretively from before Thatcher took control and reports a terrible discovery which someday she wants to share with him. However, at over 60 years, Esther Carlson died not long after her confession to Kane – with “Rosebud” forever a conundrum that will haunt him long after the day fairytale snow globes bring a tragic close to the story of Charles Foster Kane.
Tagline: “Every secret has a price, and for Charles Foster Kane, it was a single word”
As the shock of the leaked letters began to subside, Kane found his life in a state of chaos. The once-powerful media tycoon had become the object of public scorn, with rumors circulating about his personal life, his mistresses, and a possible scandal at his newspaper.
Desperate to salvage some shred of his reputation, Kane went into damage control mode. He reached out to his advisors and lawyers, trying to stem the PR crisis in any way he could. But the work was slow going, and Kane found himself feeling more and more isolated with each passing day.
Despite the chaos surrounding him, Kane clung desperately to the hope that he could turn things around. He refused to back down from any of his opinions or beliefs, convinced that his true motives would eventually be recognized.
As the weeks went on, however, Kane began to feel the weight of his troubles more heavily. He became quieter, more withdrawn, and more prone to outbursts of anger or frustration.
It was in the midst of one such outburst that his closest advisor, Jedediah Leland, finally broke his long silence.
“Charles,” Leland said, as he watched Kane pacing back and forth, “I can understand how you’re feeling. We’ve all been there, in one way or another. But there comes a point where you need to accept that there are some things you can’t control.”
Kane whirled around, his eyes glowing with fury. “What do you mean, I can’t control them?” he shouted. “I control everything in this world.”
Leland sighed. “Not everything, Charles. Sometimes life just gets the better of us. But we can still find the strength to carry on. We can still make a difference.”
For a moment, Kane was silent. Then he nodded slowly.
“You’re right, Jed,” he said. “I’ve been too blind to see it. But you’re right.”
With those words, Kane seemed to regain a measure of his old spirit. He began to throw himself into his work with renewed purpose, even as the scandal surrounding him continued to rage on.
Weeks turned into months, and yet the public outcry against Kane showed no sign of letting up. The tycoon began to grow increasingly furious and disillusioned, using his newspaper as a weapon against his critics and enemies.
It was then that Kane had an epiphany. He would take his life’s work, his newspaper, and use it to elevate the people he had always championed: the poor, the downtrodden, the forgotten.
It was a bold and risky move, but Kane was determined to see it through. He rededicated himself to journalism, pouring his heart and soul into each new story and opinion piece that he churned out at breakneck speed.
The strategy worked, remarkably; slowly but surely, public sentiment began to shift, with people taking kindly to the different tack the once disliked media taycoon had taken. But even so, Kane could not shake the feeling of emptiness and dissatisfaction that had overtaken him. There was always something missing and he couldn’t quite put a finger on what it was.
He spent hours pacing up and down his enormous Xanadu palace, muttering to himself and flipping through the pages of ancient books in the mansion’s cavernous library, searching for answers to questions that he could not even articulate.
Nothing seemed to satisfy him.
As the months turned into years, Kane found himself retreating deeper and deeper into the world of his newspaper columns, abandoning any notion of personal happiness or contentment.
It was a lonely existence, but one that he had willingly chosen. For a time, it seemed, Kane was content with his achievements, dedicating himself wholly to an endeavour in which he could make the most good.
But even then he could not shake the feeling that there was some larger truth, some larger purpose, that he had yet to uncover. Something that he could not quite grasp.
All that much remained was one enigmatic word muttered quietly, perhaps in remorse or desperation; or perhaps as self-deprecation for the giant of Americans publishing he had become.
Chapter 3 – The Introduction to Susan
Susan was singing on stage, her voice lifting up to the rafters in the ornate opera house. Charles Foster Kane sat alone in a private box, watching her with rapt attention.
He had never heard anything like her voice before; it was clear and powerful, with a vibrato that made his heart leap. He couldn’t take his eyes off her as she finished the aria, her cheeks flushed with emotion.
As the crowd rose to their feet in applause, Kane knew he had to meet her. He exited the box and made his way backstage, following her voice until he found her in her dressing room. She turned to look at him, her eyes widening in surprise.
“Mr. Kane, what brings you here?” she asked, attempting to maintain a professional demeanor.
“Your voice, Miss Alexander,” he replied, gesturing towards the stage. “It’s simply outstanding.”
Susan smiled at his compliment. “Thank you, Mr. Kane. It’s kind of you to say.”
Kane couldn’t help but stare at her, studying the curvature of her lips and the way her curly brunette hair fell against her delicate neck. Susan noticed his gaze and shifted uneasily, feeling a spark of discomfort.
“If you’ll excuse me, Mr. Kane, I must attend to my companion,” she said softly, indicating a stout, middle-aged woman who had accompanied her backstage.
“Of course,” Kane muttered, feeling a twitch of annoyance that maligned his otherwise aristocratic personality as he left the room.
Despite his initial reluctance to accept her rejection, Kane couldn’t stop thinking about Susan for days after their brief meeting. He began to attend every one of her shows, sitting in the same private box he’d had during their first chance encounter. But never once did he approach her again.
Susan, however, began to feel troubled and paranoid. She was receiving strange and obsessive gifts from Kane, a fleet of admirers hindering her emotional health with seemingly undeserved gifts that did not harbor her best interests as a budding artist. She couldn’t help but wonder who he was, and more crucially, why he kept coming to her shows. She eventually confided in her manager, asking for his advice.
Her manager: Gus Edwards, patriarch of the New York vaudeville industry, tried to assuage Susan’s apprehensions by encouraging her to embrace her newfound notoriety. He suggested she warm up to Kane’s gestures because he had wealthy and notable ties that could help jump-start her rookie career permanently. However after some time gone passed, Susan begins to have doubts about Mr. Kane’s actual role in her career and where his support actually derives from. Despite initial pride toward her achievements, instead of fully basking in possibilities, she suffered from a great emptiness within.
Gus noticed this shift in Susan and saw how vulnerable she was, thus he gave Kane a heads up that it was best if he ceased interferring, a gesture Charles could not reliably understand for the petro-monarchy-borne tantrums forbade reservations and procedures being altered or severed upon his behest. Despite, the forthcoming unfavorable circumstances caused by the peculiar consequences brewing, awaiting to emanate from Kane’s company, the prospect of the limelight intoxicating Susan to places beyond this stage caused Kane to not give up hope, unabashedly persisting and committing to his sexual conquest of the fragile songstress.
Chapter 4: “The First Rejection”
The headlines were everywhere, “Kane’s Affair Exposed!” It seemed like everyone in the city of New York was talking about it. The star reporter at The New York Inquirer, Jerry Thompson, was hurrying about the busy newsroom. He needed to get a scoop on the latest article about Charles Foster Kane. He had been tasked with trying to figure out the source of the next big story for the Inquirer.
As Jerry Thompson entered Kane’s luxurious office, he saw the paper strewn about in disarray. He had seen Kane like this before; desperate and destructive. It was like he was trying to destroy everything that defined him. The window in Kane’s office overlooked New York; underneath, a newsboy passed by, hawking the city’s biggest story – the “Kane affair.”
Charles Foster Kane was never known for his kind heart or reputation, but the revelation of his affair with Susan Alexander shook a number of people who questioned who this man was behind the ambitious facade he had created. As Thompson looked around, he saw Kane sitting alone at his desk, hunched over a bottle of brandy.
“Find out who started this! It’s untrue!” Kane shouted as Thompson looked at him. “It’s all a lie to bring me down!” he continued.
“Well, I need a statement from you, Mr. Kane,” Thompson replied calmly, trying to keep his thoughts clear.
“There is no statement!” Kane bellowed. “As far as I’m concerned, it is nobody’s business, especially yours, Thompson!”
Kane emptied his glass again and poured himself another serving. Thompson looked on in pure disgust. This once smart, talented man had allowed a woman to cause his downfall. The president of the union bank, Mr. Thatcher, once said, “He is a malefactor,” and this was only proving him right.
Jerry Thompson began walking out of the office when he saw several of Kane’s political advisers waiting outside; they stopped him catching his attention. One of them put his hand on his shoulder and said, “Jerry, we need to talk!”
As a reporter for the Inquirer, Jerry Thompson found himself in the middle of terrible games of politics more than once. He knew that these men well, what would they want with him now? He followed them, down the pristine floors soaked in gold, and into Kane’s private counsel chamber.
“We need your help, Jerry,” a nervous-looking Jackson O’Shaughnessy told Thompson. “We want to make sure the scandal—well, just goes away!”
Thompson considered what they were proposing, AKA payment for silence. Charles Foster Kane was the sort who thought he could fix everything as he pleased, but he was struggling this time, and so they were desperate.
“Kane already decided there’s not going to be any statement,” Thompson replied at last. “Now, if you don’t mind. I’ve got work to do.”
So with that, Jerry left the room feeling guilt wrack at him to refuse them so quickly. Being a reporter didn’t just end with the ultimate scoop, it was about knowing when the deal was good for the innocent percentage of the population who would be caught in between the many policies and fear of the broader masses. Attaching the Inquirer’s name to Jacobs or Bernstein type of behavior is NOT why they are in it.
Jerry sensed something off about the details of the whole affair; someone somewhere had pierced the veil and caused the powerful Kane to raise the white flag in fear. How hysterical he seemed to almost reveal something. Did he love Susan?
Thompson had some exploring to do.
And so it started. Until he found out enough material after whispers of old work employees coming to light: the opera a man scowling at her, the uncomfortable pills she heard he collected in her monthly pastries… Poor Susan was being played, manipulated psychologically and when the mainstream celebrities failed to acknowledge it at their generous parties, Kane himself decided to slim his ship just by tossing her out as easily as he’d put her in. Thompson was growing increasingly concerned when he heard Kane waited for Susan’s plane ticket on his giant daily before burning all of Sydney’s equipment.
This man put Susan Alexander through enough loss for reasons still veiled deep beneath his hurt psyche.
There was something about Kane. Something he couldn’t figure out yet. But Thompson would fully dedicate himself to finding out what this was – his obsession led him with burning passion – a bad idea considering the blood he was splicing his mediocrity with consciously. The mess that would be awaited them all could consume whole worlds in sufficient quantity.
As Thompson delved further down the rabbit hole of Kane’s private life, he found more unanswered questions than he did solid leads. And just when he was about to assume that Sphinx-like lore would continue to dwell in New York’s noisy bars, it happened. The dinner debut, with half the state to impress him and the others a guess about the suspect at the centre of all sightings in Kane kitchens. So- was the governor right where he wanted him when Kane won handsomely near midnight by a technicality hence procured after false words before an Athenian-inspired monologue by the senior editor, Jed Leland?
Thompson received orders from his inferior by messenger that they slant the party ticket in Kane’s favour immediately. There was good-natured silence for the next oh, twenty seconds, looks of pity occasionally tossed at him behind his scrupulously managed back. Thompson felt a wave of nausea pass gratefully by.“ I quit,“ he repeated several times like the battle cry of zealous missionaries. Watching Charles Foster Kane destroy anyone and everything around him revealed a far more serious situation than anything anyone could clarify without throwing him out from his spot in authoritative force.
It took time, but Kane gradually began to understand what he had done, but it was too late. The damage had already been caused, and no move or statement could change what had already been embroiled half of New York society. Every well-meaning, tyrannical or self-destructive move Kane made would always be in some way linked to that childhood trauma, to the loss of innocence he had been forced to suffer at such a young age.
The stars above Manhattan filled the night sky as Jerry Thompson walked down the street, going over everything he discovered about Charles Foster Kane. Despite his whirlwind journey, he couldn’t make sense of so many things. Were the pieces of Kane’s deteriorating mind like dominoes waiting for that final nudge?
Chapter 5: “The Investigation”
Journalist Jerry Thompson sits in a dimly lit room, surrounded by stacks of newspaper archives of the late Charles Foster Kane’s life, as he searches for the key to unlocking the mystery of “Rosebud.” Thompson, determined to solve the riddle surrounding Kane’s last word, delves deeper into Kane’s past, hoping to discover the true meaning behind the word that continued to evade him.
Kane’s empire was built on the foundation of his seemingly unlimited wealth, which Thompson set out to investigate. Thompson relentlessly scoured through every document available to him, including old business contracts and financial statements, and sought out individuals who knew Kane and worked with him back then.
After a long and tedious investigation, Thompson finally found his breakthrough when he uncovered Kane’s guardianship papers of the wealthy industrialist, which provided insight into the trauma that Kane experienced as a child. With this intimate knowledge of Kane’s past, Thompson’s understanding of Kane began to shift, realizing that his vast wealth was a coping mechanism for the devastating abandonment he suffered as a child.
Thompson also dug up a critical document in which an estate manager had written about what Rosebud meant to Kane; Rosebud was his childhood sled, which represented a simpler time in his life before he lost everything that was dear to him.
As the investigation unfolded, it became evident that Kane had barricaded himself from the truth about himself, creating a public image that contrasted his deep-seated pain and isolation. Thompson also realized that the internal conflicts Kane faced within him had spurred his rash and impulsive actions over different times in his life.
Thompson’s findings would ultimately lead him to seek out individuals who had crossed paths with Kane, all in a desperate attempt to uncover the final pieces of the puzzle regarding the last cryptic word on Kane’s dying lips.
As Thompson pushed forward with his investigation and closed the remaining gaps in his search for answers, the shocking truth of Kane’s legacy was gradually revealed; a man haunted by a life-changing event from childhood, which led him to hide amongst his possessions and to push those most dear to him away. With newfound understanding and empathy for Kane, Thompson drew a bittersweet conclusion to the story of the enigma that was Charles Foster Kane, and ultimately, the meaning of “Rosebud.”
Chapter 6: “The Start of War”
Charles Foster Kane had always been a controversial media personality, known for his brash headlines and bold political stances. News of his latest article had just hit the stands, and it was sure to cause a stir.
“The United States Must Go To War!” blared the headline across the front page of the New York Inquirer. Kane had been a vocal advocate for U.S. involvement in the growing international conflicts, and had spared no expense at his newspaper in rallying support.
But while many cheered Kane’s aggressive tactics, others were outraged. Across the country, protesters gathered in mass demonstrations, calling for an end to the warmongering rhetoric.
As the unrest grew, it soon became clear that Kane’s strong stance wasn’t the only factor at play. Rumors circulated about his close ties to wealthy arms manufacturers, with whispers of backroom deals and bribery.
Kane stubbornly refused to back down in the face of the mounting tension. In passionate speeches to his staff and radio broadcasts to the public, he doubled down on his commitment to a grand American military effort.
But as the international crisis deepened, Kane found himself grappling with deeper internal conflicts. Memories of his traumatic childhood resurfaced again and again, haunting him at night and making him question his own motivations for pushing so hard for war.
As he sat alone in his lavish office overlooking the city, Kane felt an ache in his chest that went beyond heartburn. He couldn’t shake the feeling that he was setting the world on a dangerous path, and that no amount of power or influence could protect him from the fallout.
But despite his doubts, Kane pressed on. The next article would be even more aggressive, he thought to himself. The only way to end a global crisis was to confront it head-on, with boldness and courage. He couldn’t back down now.
Chapter 7: “The Breakdown”
The snowfall had become a raging blizzard outside Kane’s luxurious Xanadu estate. Inside, the grand hall was silent, the only sounds coming from the crackling fireplace and the tapping of keys as Bernstein, Kane’s loyal butler, typed up some notes on the latest business affairs.
As Bernstein worked, his keen senses picked up on the faint sounds issuing from Kane’s bedroom on the other side of the mansion. With newfound worry etched above his brow, Bernstein went to investigate.
Peeking into the bedroom’s entranceway, Bernstein laid eyes on the bizarre sight before him. Kane had scattered pages of paper allover the room, various sections of typed reports and trading sheets three to four pages deep, with black and red ink scribbled across them in frenzied handwriting. The room was chaos, with Kane at the center of it all, frantically searching through the papers and shrieking nonsense phrases like, “Where?! Where?!”
Bernstein approached the sudden cascade of frantic questions with concern, elevating his voice above the roar of the storm outside. “Are you all right, Mr. Kane?” Bernstein looked at Kane’s gray, haggard face and widened his eyes in worry. “What’s going on?” he asked again.
Kane continued to pile up papers afoot. “Where’s the statement? “he yelled anxiously, searching aimlessly through the pages. “Where’s the…where’s the …profits stay?”
“Profits stay,” repeated Bernstein, not entirely sure of what the scenario was, as if picking through jumbled puzzle pieces to extract the story he feared it best fit. “Oh, you’re interested in that?”
“Yes, yes, of course!'” Kane cried with frenetic excitement. `Profits stay.’ That sentence sounded like money growing in the safe.”
Bernstein paused, making a condescending remark under his implied breath, but Kane didn’t appear to have heard it.
“I don’t know where you saw that phrase, Mr. Kane, but here,’ Bernstein gestured broadly to much of the room ‘there’s not much of it, these days.”
Kane laughed wildly before disappearing deep into the recesses of his findings again, roughly rustling thousands of sheets about the room as the candle flickered in drafty accordance.
Bernstein left Kane twisting in the golden shafts emanating from the single candle sallowly left burning, realizing he had not the slightest notion of how to help. Furthermore, he wondered whether this failure-this inability to be…therapeutic-at some deeper, moral level was what was truly so maddening. Such empathy can’t always dull the metropolis- belittling bites of journalistic grandeur.
The night shall hang heavily over departing boulevards.In the morning everything would look as before-the mere prospect and array of the blizzard storm never occured to fix deeper complications beyond their harsh reality.
Chapter 8: “The Affairs”
The headlines screamed for days – Charles Foster Kane, the celebrated newspaper magnate known for his unyielding editorial policy and bold candidature, had not only been unfaithful to his wife, Emily, but had left a damning trail of corruption and deceit in his lascivious wake. As these sordid revelations surfaced, the city was caught up in its worst scandal in living memory.
For the first time, Emily stepped forward to face the press. Her eyes were swollen with tears, and she held a crumpled handkerchief in her hands as if searching for comfort. In her conservative outfit, her hair neatly tied behind her head, she was the antithesis of every other woman in the room, who had arrived in their finest jewels and silk gowns. Her voice was barely stifled as she announced that she was willing to forgive this betrayal in hopes of regaining her husband’s much-defined affection.
On the night before this press conference, Emily and Kane had a fierce argument. Despite the night’s unpleasant events, Kane returned to his mistress’s bed as though sleeping together would somehow reconcile them.
Notably absent from this occasion of public shaming wasn’t Susan Alexander. The flame of Kane’s illicit passion grew dull gradually, crushing Susan’s dream of finally occupying a brighter spot in Kane’s life.
Yet for Kane, even the object of his affection wasn’t enough to ease his desperate bids to escape the torment that had become his recent life. As Emily’s fortitude began to falter with every passing day and Kane’s detached behaviors towards her fell deeper into wicked disrespect, it was apparent that the revelations of the affairs had profoundly impacted them both.
Meanwhile, timid whispers increased among the personnel in Kane’s broad business empire. Kane never forgive that their forthcoming loyalty remained uncertain. Beyond that, his marital heresy showed disdain for Emily, the elegant socialite commonly known as wealthy industrialist, James Norton’s beautiful niece.
“He’s used to cheating on his wife and lying to the public. You cannot trust such a scoundrel. We’re better off without him.”
The whispers kept flowing as reporters noted the growing desperation of audacious board members’ plans to strip Kane of his position, accumulate controlling shares and finally, ruin him.
Yet fate lingered in wait for the soon-resolved rollercoaster of blistering dramas and indescribable secrets that constitute pressure’s effect on humanity.
Chapter 9: The Blackmail
Kane had faced many scandals and controversies over the years, from the publication of personal letters to accusations of moral impropriety. But nothing had prepared him for the threat of blackmail that would soon shake his world to its core.
It began with a call to his office from a mysterious voice who identified themselves only as “Mr. X.” They claimed to have damaging information about Kane’s personal life, something that could ruin his reputation and his business if it were to become public knowledge.
Kane was immediately on guard, but also intrigued about what this stranger might have on him. He agreed to meet with Mr. X under the condition of anonymity, setting up a secret meeting in a deserted parking garage.
As Kane nervously waited by the designated spot, his mind raced with anxious thoughts. What if this was some kind of trap? What if Mr. X was just looking to extort him for money? He had dealt with such threats before, but something about this particular situation felt more dangerous.
Finally, a shadowy figure emerged from the darkness, enveloped in a heavy coat and a fedora pulled low over their face. They approached Kane with a briefcase in hand, and wordlessly passed it to him.
Kane’s hands shook as he opened the case, revealing a stack of incriminating photos and details about his extramarital affairs, illegal dealings, and even a secret love child he had kept hidden from the world.
The reality of the situation hit Kane like a ton of bricks. He knew that if this information were to come out, not only would it ruin his career and legacy but also hurt the people he cared about the most, including his wife and children.
Mr. X didn’t make any immediate demands, but Kane understood that he was dealing with a ruthless person who would exploit his power over him for maximum gain. He had to protect himself and his family before it was too late.
With renewed urgency, Kane hired his best operatives to investigate the source of the blackmail, but they couldn’t track down the elusive Mr. X. Kane’s anxiety grew palpable as he found himself constantly looking over his shoulder and becoming paranoid about who could be watching him.
In the end, the solution came from an unexpected source. A shrewd young reporter with a nose for slimy dealings heard about the blackmail and made it his mission to find a way to help Kane.
Together, he and Kane devised a plan to lure Mr. X out into the open and disarm him. It wasn’t without risks, but to Kane, it was worth the chance to finally end the nightmare of living under the threat of extortion.
In the end, the plan worked flawlessly, and they captured Mr. X, who was revealed to be a low-level journalist with a bitter grudge against Kane for snubbing her long ago by giving an exclusive to her competitor. She had concocted the blackmail scheme as a way to get revenge on the man who had once overlooked her.
As Kane watched Mr. X being taken away in handcuffs, he couldn’t help but feel relief that the ordeal was finally over. He came to realize that even the most powerful men in the world were capable of being vulnerable, and that it was wise to never underestimate the degree of someone’s greed and spitefulness.
Chapter 10: The Redemption
As Charles Foster Kane sat in his study, he reflected on his past mistakes and the devastation he had caused to those around him. Susan’s haunted expression and the numerous affairs he had behind Emily’s back played constantly in his mind. His heart was filled with regret, and he knew that he had to make amends.
Kane had always been a force to be reckoned with, but now, his determination had been renewed. He would do everything in his power to make things right with Susan, Emily, and his son, Charles Jr.
He picked up his pen and began writing two separate letters – one to Susan and one to Emily. In both, he expressed his profound remorse and the yearning to start anew.
In Susan’s letter, he wrote, “My dearest Susan, I am so sorry for causing you so much pain. I know that you paid a heavy price for loving me. But from now on, I vow to help you rebuild your life and pursue your dreams. You deserve nothing less.”
In his letter to Emily, he apologized for his infidelity and for neglecting their marriage. He wrote, “My dear Emily, I know that I haven’t always been the husband that you deserved. I regret the hurt that I’ve caused you in our many years together, and I pray that I still have time to set things right. I know that I can never change the past, but I promise to be faithful to you until the end of my days.”
He checked both letters several times before folding them and putting them into two different envelopes. He held both in his hand, hesitating.
Kane went for a long, solitary walk to contemplate his thoughts. He suddenly felt overwhelmed as he realized how much of an impact he had on everyone’s life or what a small impact everyone else had on his. He wondered if things could have been different, if he had let Susan become the opera singer she had always dreamed of, instead of forcing her to sing in the nightclub. Or if he had loved Emily the way she deserved to be loved – if it would have driven her to leave him.
He thought about his business ventures and his political aspirations, where he had always played his cards close to his chest and did not allow himself to become close to anyone. Every relationship with businessmen, politicians, and acquaintances had been purely professional.
As he approached his study again, he took one long, deep breath and decided to confront Charles Jr. about writing the article that exposed his past misdoings just as he was starting to repent.
“Charles?.. My son – I know you meant the best for me but to reveal my personal life to the world the way you did,” he paused. “Can’t you see that I’m trying to make amends here? Don’t categorize your father into being like every ambition driven man out there.”
Charles Jr. looked at him with a mixture of surprise and guilt.
“You still have so much life ahead of you – there’s no need for you to hurt me with a vindictive attitude. But it’s not too late to make amends here.” he took one deep breath.
He slowly handed Charles Jr. a letter that had words that will make Charles Jr Sob.
“My boy, please remember anything that’s worth doing takes time to achieve. What’s worth the prize when you cannot claim it to be your own effort? Read this will you?..”
Charles Jr wide-opened the envelope and gasped his tears out on the realization of the shocking truth from his father’s earlier verdict- an authentic portrayal of his fatherhood.
Slowly Kane turned as tears gathered in his eyes and with a pronounced sigh walked out of Charles Jr’s sight.
Only one thing kept him awake after retiring to bed that day. The answer from Susan. If only… he felt asleep with those consuming thoughts in his head.
The following day, Kane visited Susan with a present of a piano they sat, murmuring small phlegmatic thoughts here and there. He could feel the disillusioned weight she carried most apparently.
“Susan, I know I can’t undo all I have put you through but my paying for vocal classes and you renewing your own career somewhere else and starting anew – if that’s what would make that regrettable incident, just a memory for you.” he read Susan’s hesitant face and added. “It won’t just give life to your unbridled star that’s poised to light up the heavens instead, it will bring closure and ease the burden on your heart, all I want is for you to believe the best you should be.”
Susan’s face lit up more noticeably than previous moments…in her heart she harbored resentment..for years..thinking of redeeming a loselight by herself; the burning slights that steered her to closedout aspirations just with a swave of Charles’ words. The ideas, birthright, hands-free attitude that he taught her to succumb made all the difference.
Meanwhile, in his residence Kane’s feelings were whipped into confusion by the staggering memory and regret he felt at that moment and tucking it all…he went through possible action tours unconsciously making two closed endings.
Will he follow up on this redemptive trail, or pen his self retribution?
Chapter 11: The Death of Charles Foster Kane
Throughout his life, Charles Foster Kane lived in the shadow of his tragic childhood, never able to escape the trauma of his separation from his mother. As he lay dying in his lavish estate, surrounded by material possessions but truly alone, he uttered his final words: “Rosebud.”
Those who knew Kane’s obsession with his past speculated that the mysterious word was his longing for a simpler time, a symbol of his lost innocence. Others believed it was tied to an object or person that held a special meaning for him. The search for the true meaning of “Rosebud” began, shrouded in rumor and speculation.
Over the years, numerous theories were proposed; some believed it referred to a childhood sled that Kane owned, while others thought it was linked to the young love of his life, Emily Norton. One man, an aspiring reporter named Thompson, delved deep into Kane’s past to uncover the truth about “Rosebud.”
After interviewing multiple people who were close to Kane in his life, Thompson couldn’t shake the feeling that something was missing. He went back to start over, reviewing all the information everything again. Suddenly, in looking over the personal records of Kane’s guardian, he found a significant missing piece. Kane’s childhood sled, “Rosebud,” was stored in the attic of his mansion, long forgotten after he passed through the rosebud phase of his childhood.
Thompson ventured up to the attic and stumbled upon the sled, triggering memories from his earlier interviews. Watching Kane’s sled going up in flames, it was then that Thompson finally made the leap to understand Kane’s final words. This elusive word was a metaphor for Kane reflecting back over all the important, primitive things he had lost as he became engrossed with wealth and power. Lyrically, something innocent yet completely disillusioned.
Ultimately, the search for the true meaning of “Rosebud” served as a reflection of society’s lack of understanding. Even when every aspect of a person’s life is scrutinized and examined for traces of meaning, some secrets will always remain unsolved. The haunting mystery of Charles Foster Kane would forever remain unanswered, perpetually reminding us that even those who live a life of fame and fortune can be plagued with the same deep-rooted traumas and regrets as anyone else.
Chapter 12: The Legacy
Charles Foster Kane had been laid to rest in a grand cemetery, surrounded by his closest friends and allies. The crowds had dispersed, leaving only Kane’s associates and a few journalists still loitering at the gates. The event was over, but the unanswered questions and unresolved debates surrounding Kane’s life still lingered in the air, seeking a final resting place.
The decision to name Banks, Kane’s closest assistant, as the new proprietor of the Inquirer had been received positively by most of Kane’s colleagues. However, Raymond, Kane’s estranged business partner, remained bitter over being excluded from Kane’s will. He bought a failing newspaper and vowed to outdo Kane’s legacy, saying that “Kane could beat the world, but not Raymond.” The mention of Kane’s name invoked fierce emotions from both his adversaries and supporters alike. One of Kane’s supporters stated, “Mr. Kane was a man who got everything he wanted, and then lost it. Maybe Rosebud was something he couldn’t get, or something he lost. Anyway, it wouldn’t have explained anything… I don’t think any word can explain a man’s life. No, I guess Rosebud is just a… piece in a jigsaw puzzle… a missing piece.”
A meeting was set between Banks and Jerry Thompson to discuss the meaning of “Rosebud” which sparked Thompson’s search for the truth about Kane’s life. Now years later, Thompson closes the file and sets it on his desk alongside several newspapers from Kane’s heyday. He begins to nostalgic about Kane’s life, his triumphs, and failures were enthralling in their own ways. He recognized for perhaps the first time that the path Kane had chosen ended in loneliness and isolation. He was a man who could never have enough, who could never find a way to be content. But there was one valuable lesson that he had taken from the life of Charles Foster Kane that he would never forget: treasure moments and loved ones.
Thompson remembers the people he had encountered throughout his investigation, particularly Susan Alexander. She was the one who made sense of Charles Foster Kane’s life more than anyone could. She had lessons herself to learn from while living her own life albeit under Kane’s shadow. Now a successful and acclaimed opera singer living in her truth, restituioning from her past with Kane.
Kane’s former employees, including his butler, Raymond, and Susan, also had varied experiences working for him. They all seemed to acknowledge his charisma and magnetism, which drew them to him, but seemed to brush aside his problematic behavior towards them at times. They respected their late boss and had moved on from the incidents of the past, but the overall impact of Kane’s life on them was significant.
At the junkyard, the boy who picked up Kane’s sled bundled up and cold, lights a fire beside an arsenal, followed by happily starting his jigsaw puzzle raised back and said, “Rosebud,” while gazing petulantly at the lost piece he has discovered in a freshly bought crate of assorted ornaments, the mantle from Charles Foster Kane’s beloved childhood sled.
Despite Thompson’s pursuit of finding the meaning of “Rosebud,” his research ultimately reinforces the idea that one’s legacy is far more than most think of it. A lifetime of experiences, remembered or not, shape every individual, and as a result, parts of that become something that will affect future generations even without one’s intention at times. Thompson realizes that having concluded most of his investigations of Kane to their completion, even after all these years, it is still entirely left incomplete.
Some scenes from the AI movie Citizen Kane
Title: Neighborly Affairs
EXT. NEIGHBORHOOD – DAY
A quiet suburban neighborhood. Meticulous lawns perfectly trimmed trees adorn the street. The birds are chirping, and gentle sounds familiar too and from inside the homes.
One of the houses has a garage door that begins to open slowly, creaking as it rises. We hear HELEN WEST’s voice (60) coming from inside the house:
Jerry, make sure you wear something nice! We got to get there early and help Sara set up.
Jerry WEST (65) steps into the frame. Short-time tinkering with something in his hand.
(CLOSE TO HELEN)
Don’t you worry, dear. I’ll be ready
Helen beams and Jerry makes his way out toward the driveway to start the family car.
EXT.BLACK CAR-PARKING AREA-NIGHT
A different perspective indeed it is night now. Several cars are parked in neat rows, decorated with balloons and streamers for a special occasion. The view panning beyond to the silhouette of the human figure coming towards it footsteps echoes mildly in the silence.
Suddenly we hear a muffled laughter and female voice;
Don’t be such a chicken Rick i can’t believe you wouldn’t be up for it!
RICK (33) walks into view. He looks nervous, but accepting a gift bag from a smiling Sara placed on the white- clothed table as the closer they get to the party which is filled with people of also similar backgrounds.
The chatter before comes louder revealing a seemingly tranquil night despite the absence of stars.
Thanks to co-operation of setting the party venue supported by selected foods ranging from meats to salads, flickering white lights hung notably low off strands circling the area.
INT-NIGHT-private Venue space
As everyone made their way in exclusive space An embroidered sign casually announces “Welcome to Westmister Exchange”. Middle-aged faces talk and laugh as they part-take in food and drinks helping themselves instead of bothering the workers, typical to the family that has everything; everyone was relaxed except Rick, glancing around in suspicion.
As the room goes silent when Jerry presents a toast. A brief hesitation observed until Jerry points to the high profile audience encouraged and tending to respect security in privacy an instills encouraging comments’ responses roaring laughter ensuring that the niceties till now assumed might not last long.
And a special welcome thanks to our newest member, Rick.
Rick, cheeks turning red and sweaty as he raises his glass hesitantly.
Thank you, it’s great to be here.
We zoom in on his face, now distinctly uncomfortable. As sudden as it comes, an announcement interrupts.
MC explaining the activities to everyone so a good time guaranteed that avoids most deep dialogue; Once again, the room engulfs in a semblance of the once energetic atmosphere
(The camera angle changing from lapel bouncer’s drama last minute eye brawl)
EXT. Venues outdoor- NIGHT
Rick as such quickly avoiding that social blow to fill drinks to ensure that hell stayed away captures a whiff of smoke. Five people are lost in conversation, standing in a corner, away from about pleasant stiff drink named Tea&Dixie.
1. JANET(30) female figured and smart brunette the former lawyer.
3. Sara(30) wife of Jerry by far has exquisite beauty
They huddle around laughing, everyone relaxed but as Rick slips into their shadow, suddenly returns somber energy among them each regarding with isolated stares hidden behind smiles.
(Inaudible whisper SOMETHING loud enough for Janet to lean towards him.)
As Rick glances at him, priorly confirming his conjecture, the diss fake pleasantries exchange comes to be seen on all staff; funny in the face but sad inside ‘social norms’.
INT. KANE’S OFFICE – XANADU MANSION – DAY
Kane sits behind his massive desk with an empty gaze. His second wife, Susan Alexander, is pacing back and forth behind him, yelling into the phone.
Teddy, calm down. We’ll figure
Kane is absentmindedly shuffling through papers. Susan hangs up the phone with a heavy sigh.
It’s your friend, Teddy. He
says you owe him money.
Oh, just send him some money.
What difference does it make?
Charles, we don’t have that kind
of money laying around.
Send him a check then, before
he comes down here causing more
Kane yells for his butler, Raymond, who appears a moment later.
Who’s Teddy’s check made out to?
Perhaps we should review our
finances first, sir.
I said, to whom is his check
made out to!
He’s frightened of you.
Kane slowly turns his head to Susan’s stern facial features.
(Whispers slow and icy)
Perhaps he should be.
Susan shakes off the feeling and returns the gaze.
If this is what I could expect
from you for our entire future,
Charles, forget it.
Kane sighs irritably and closes the ledger.
Just send him a blank check
and let’s move on from this.
Kane continues shuffling papers as Susan tosses the phones unceremoniously.
That’s cold, very cold Charles.
Dispirited, Susan exits slowly.
Kane looks back to his papers, and unhappily takes up his pen.
Fallaway music introduces the “News on the March” newspaper headline montage.
INT. AN INTERROGATION ROOM – DAY
We see a table with two chairs on either side in the centre of the room. A man in his late thirties, JOHN is sat on one of the chairs. He’s nervously glancing around, sweating under the scrutiny of the INTERROGATOR, who is sat across him.
INTERROGATOR: (in a gruff voice) Start from the beginning.
John is reluctant, he takes a deep breath and starts to speak.
JOHN: (slowly) I was working in Wall Street – a successful stock trader in my firm. I had a supportive wife, a cute dog, my health and my habits all under control.
Interrogator raises an eyebrow in question.
JOHN (Contd’): One day, I got a package. It was from Sara, someone from my past.
He hesitates as he gets emotional.
JOHN (Contd’): (voice cracking) My daughter, who I never knew existed. I was shocked and disoriented, but who wouldn’t be?
INT. JOHN’S LUXURY APARTMENT BUILDING (LAKE VIEW TERRACE) – DAY
John rips upon the envelope of the package and finds an old polaroid of a girl with a beach at the background. A note welcomes John to his new life as a father, with an address that belonged his ex-fiancé Sara.
John goes through a series of emotions: betrayal, rage, and blankness overtakes him all at once as he stares long and hard at the picture of his newborn, back then.
john (to himself): (whispers) Kira.
A determined John grabs his coat and begins his journey to the unknown.
SEPARATELY SHOT ON A NEW-YORK CITY-FILLED STREET FROM A HIGHER PERSPECTIVE
A sky-view shot of John walks through the streets filled with the sound of the cityful of people.
BACK TO SCENE:
John scours the parking place in front of the welcome sign of Syosset.
INT. COFFEE SHOP – DAY
Donna and Tom are sitting at a table with their coffees.
Tom, I know you’re suspicious, but there’s nothing to worry about.
Really, then why the lies?
It’s not what you think.
Well, what is it then?
It’s hard to explain, but I work for a secret government agency.
Tom leans in, his interest piqued.
What kind of secret agency?
I can’t really say, but let’s just say my job is to keep the country safe.
Tom looks impressed.
Wow, that’s intense. No wonder you can’t tell me everything.
Exactly. And it’s risky for us to be together like this, you never know who’s watching.
Tom nods his head in agreement.
I understand, but I can’t let you go. I’ll do whatever it takes to be with you.
I’m glad you feel that way.
They clasp hands and look into each other’s eyes.
INT. JOSEPH’S OFFICE – DAY.
Joseph is scrolling through his phone when a notification pops up. His eyes light up at the sight of the message from Ruth. He begins to type a reply, then hesitates midway, his finger hovering over the send button. He tightens his grip on the phone and leans back in his chair.
Joseph (to himself, sighs heavily): This is so messed up.
Just then, the door to his office creaks open and a young lawyer, Aaron, walks in.
Aaron (smiling): Hey, you busy?
Joseph (clears throat, pauses momentarily): No, no. I’m just going through these files.
Aaron takes a seat in front of Joseph’s desk, as Joseph tacitly searches he pockets to his suit hanging on the back of the door, looks at the message again and finally decides to hit send.
Joseph (smiling in regards to the message): So, what brings you here?
Aaron (face turns serious): I noticed that you cancelled yesterday’s meeting with Adams Corp. Is everything alright?
Joseph remains indifferent.
Joseph: Yeah, I’ve been tied up with other things lately.
Aaron (concerned): Sorry, Joe, but that’s not how it works around here. We’ve got to be at the top of our game, especially since we’re facing fierce competition. We need…
Joseph was lost as his concentration shifted towards Ruth’s last message, Aaron’s voice blanked echoing in the background.
Joseph (to himself, whispers in disbelief): It can’t be…
EXT. ABANDONED FACTORY – DAY
Tom rushes towards a deserted factory, where he spots Jimmy’s car parked as a loud humming noise echoes from inside.
As he approaches, he sees the silhouette of Jimmy’s body slumped over a machine. Tom races to his partner, then realizes it’s too late, Jimmy is dead.
Oh God, Jimmy, who would do this?
He spots a heavy hammer lying next to Jimmy’s body covered in bloodstains. Tom picks up the hammer and dials 911 with his other hand.
The sound of Tom’s voice is shaken by anguish as he tries to speak into his phone.
(Trembling, through the phone)
Police! I need the Police! There’s a man down his.. dead murdered! Send help!
Tom slowly sets the phone down and looks heartbroken as sirens wail in the background.