The Magnificent Ambersons
The Magnificent Ambersons (1942)

Orson Welles' followup to Citizen Kane (1941) was utterly different from Kane in style and texture, but just as brilliant in its own way. Writer/director Welles does not appear on camera, but his voiceover narration superbly sets the… More

Directed By:
Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: July 10, 1942
DVD Release Date: September 18, 2012
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Critic Score: 91% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Pauline Kael
New Yorker

Even in this truncated form it's amazing and memorable.

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Manny Farber
The New Republic

While telling this story, haltingly and clumsily, the movie runs from burdensome through heavy and dull to bad. It stutters and stumbles as Welles submerges Tarkington's story in a mess of radio and stage technique.

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Josh Larsen

The bold cinematic techniques Welles employed in Citizen Kane are put to even more sophisticated use here.

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TIME Magazine

Ambersons is not another Citizen Kane, but it is good enough to remove Director Welles for keeps from the novice or one-picture-prodigy class.

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Variety Staff

Orson Welles devotes 9,000 feet of film to a spoiled brat who grows up as a spoiled, spiteful young man. This film hasn't a single moment of contrast; it piles on and on a tale of woe, but without once striking at least a true chord of sentimentality.

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Nathanael Hood
The Young Folks

The performances, the cinematography, the melancholy tone of loss make [The Magnificent Ambersons] one of the most technically inspired films of Hollywood's past.

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Kevin Thomas
Los Angeles Times

Although reams have been written about the mutilation of Orson Welles' second feature, what remains of it is nevertheless a major accomplishment.

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Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader

The emotional sense of America in the late 19th and early 20th centuries is so palpable you can taste it.

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Michael E. Grost
Classic Film and Television

Visually creative classic.

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More reviews for The Magnificent Ambersons

Flixster Audience Score: 85% Flixster User Reviews
Spencer S.
Orson Welles was reportedly furious when this film was cut to smithereens by his studio, and his editor, Robert Wise, while he was elsewhere, filming in South… More
Tim Sigur
I enjoyed it a little bit more than Kane.
Devon Bott
That staircase. After watching The Magnificent Ambersons, I'm still struck by the staircase of the Amberson mansion. Director Orson Welles somehow gives… More
jay nixon
agnes moorehead is brilliant in this
Tim Salmons
I'd love to Welles' actual version of this, becuase this pretty boring.
Michael Gildea
Stunning visuals and camera angles. Possibly the most boring and least driven story ever.