F for Fake
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Four people stand at the center of this documentary: Elmyr de Hory, who some believe forged more than a thousand masterpieces, many of which hang in some of the world's most famous museums; Clifford Irving, who is not only out to prove what a fake Elmyr is but also wrote a fake biography of Howard Hughes; Oja Kodar, who claims that Pablo Picasso painted 22 canvases of her that no one has ever seen; and Welles himself, who harks back to his days creating the havoc-causing "The War of the Worlds" for radio. But the true star of the film is the editing; from absurd stock footage to… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 88%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Alternately superficial and profound."
‑ Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
"A charming, witty meditation upon fakery, forgery, swindling and art, a movie that may itself be its own Exhibit A."
‑ Vincent Canby, New York Times
"It tells us that what we like is just fine and that the value is art is measured in something other than currency, though in this case the price of a cinema ticket will do nicely."
‑ Ed Whitfield, The Ooh Tray
"Thirty-two years after he unfolded the cinematic pop-up book that was Citizen Kane, Orson Welles collapsed the entire medium in on itself with this irresistible 1973 film essay on art and fakery."
‑ Robbie Collin, Daily Telegraph
"Less heralded than some of Welles' other work, F For Fake is still a fascinating examination of authenticity and authorship."
‑ David Parkinson, Empire Magazine
"A triumphantly self-amused, self-aware reflection on the verities of art and creativity and the lies that sustain them."
‑ , Time Out
"Welcome to the philosophical fun house that is F for Fake, stuffed full of questions about the nature of art and authorship, illusion and reality, lies and truth."
‑ Glenn Abel, Hollywood Reporter
"A modest, throwaway trifle but still entertaining."
‑ Allan Hunter, Daily Express
"So rich, ripe and tricksy you'll need to give this one multiple sweeps."
‑ David Jenkins, Little White Lies
"Welles' assurance that you will be enthralled by his every word and oversized gesture is so arrogant, so refreshingly contemptuous, that you'd give him a round of applause, if you weren't sure he was doing that for himself every time he called, "cut.""
‑ Adam Lippe, Examiner.com
"A singular combination of documentary, essay, narrative, broad comedy, hoax, and cinematic vaudeville."
‑ Nathan Rabin, AV Club
"At times T for tedious and P for pretentious, the film remains essential viewing for admirers of the great cineaste and showman."
‑ Philip French, Observer [UK]
"F for Fake is a minor work in some ways, but there is fascination and poignancy in seeing Welles's elegant retreat into this hall of mirrors."
‑ Peter Bradshaw, Guardian
"Welles was to claim, 'I believe a work is good to the degree that it expresses the man who created it' and, by that standard, F for Fake must be a masterpiece."
‑ Paul Huckerby, Electric Sheep
"gives the viewer the feeling that he's in Welles's expansive company...while he considers and pontificates on a pet topic. That in itself is a privilege, and reason enough to check out F for Fake"
‑ Jay Antani, Cinema Writer
More reviews for F for Fake on Rotten Tomatoes

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