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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent period film.
This is a little gem of a film - based on Robert Kaplow`s fictionalised account of the landmark 1937 Mercury Theatre production of Julius Caesar directed by Orson Welles.
Christian McKay gives an entirely credible performance as Welles and the re-creation of the production itself is marvellously evocative; at the time the play caused quite a stir with its...
Published on 9 Jun 2011 by J. Mcdonald

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Pretentious and phony
I admire anyone who can sit through more than eight minutes of this stupid, pretentious movie. Everything about it screams "Look at me!", and when a movie's own pretensions can overshadow as flamboyant a character as Orson Welles, something is terribly wrong.

It's just one "Look at me!" moment after another. "Look at me! I'm the real 1930s New York City!"...
Published 10 days ago by J. Martin


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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Pretentious and phony, 18 Aug 2014
By 
J. Martin (New York) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Me and Orson Welles [DVD] (DVD)
I admire anyone who can sit through more than eight minutes of this stupid, pretentious movie. Everything about it screams "Look at me!", and when a movie's own pretensions can overshadow as flamboyant a character as Orson Welles, something is terribly wrong.

It's just one "Look at me!" moment after another. "Look at me! I'm the real 1930s New York City!" (that's the cheesy, heavily sepia-ed Hollywood backlot set talking) Then: "Look at me! I'm Zac Efron, making a REAL MOVIE! and I can play a mean drum roll! and sing a Wheaties jingle! and flirt with an ugly girl!" Then: "Look at me! I may be an unknown British stage actor, but I *AM* Orson Welles!"

That's when I gagged and ejected the DVD. I'll spare myself yet another appearance of the persistently obnoxious Claire Danes.

Viewers who think this movie is an authentic look at Welles, or an authentic look at Depression-era New York theatre, or an authentic ANYTHING, have had their minds crippled by watching way too much phony Hollywood garbage - which is exactly what this movie is.
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5.0 out of 5 stars quick delivery, 15 Aug 2014
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This review is from: Me and Orson Welles [DVD] (DVD)
Great DVD arrived quickly
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars In some ways a very, very good film, 10 Aug 2010
By 
L. E. Cantrell (Vancouver, British Columbia Canada) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Me and Orson Welles [DVD] (DVD)
This is a film that on the whole I enjoyed. Nevertheless, it must be described as an unhappy mix of the brilliant and the dreary.

The flm's problem is obvous in its very title, "Me and Orson Welles." Frankly, I didn't give a d--n about the "Me," while I was fascinated by the portrayal of the young, volcanic Orson Welles. For some reason, 2009 was the year for screen viewing of larger-than-life icons through the experiences of nobodies; consider this film and the earlier "Julie and Julia," or whatever it was called.

Newcomer--at least on these shores--Christian McKay is simply brilliant in capturing the dazzling personality and unmitigated duplicity of Welles in his radio and Mercury Theatre days.

Zac Efron is ... well, Zac Efron.

Efron not very convincingly portrays a 17 year-old high school senior who stumbles on Welles and the Mercury Theatre in Manhattan in the final week of their preparations to present a modern-dress, fascist-styled version of Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar," renamed by Welles' edict as just plain "Caesar." Efron fast talks himself into the job of an unpaid apprentice/bit player in the production. Through his eyes we see the titanic, machiavellian, charming, treacherous Welles carry off a theatrical triumph against all odds and most standards of acceptable behavior.

Alas, for far too much of its running time, the camera stays on Efron, his lame attempts to seduce one of the members of the company, and his crushing--not to mention inevitable--defeat in a contest of wills with Welles.

This is a picture that will appeal to a relatively narrow audience: those people who love the theater and are interested in theatrical history. The Welles and Mercury Theatre sequences will wow them, beyond a doubt.

A presumably larger audience segment, those who might be interested in Zac Efron's boyish charms, such as they are, will probably be disappointed at their idol's inexplicalbe failure to triumph.

As far as I'm concerned, this is a five-star film to the Welles and Mercury Theatre sequences and a three-star film for the Efron and girlfriend(s) sequences, for a composite rating of four stars.

A NOTE ON FORMAL STRUCTURE:
It should be noted that the film offers a meticulous parallelism between Welles and Efon's character. Both Welles and the high schooler get along in showbiz by pure effrontary, both pull off an artistic triumph ("Caesar" and the publication of a friend's short story in The New Yorker) by chicanery, both drop into extensive quotations from literary sources at unexpected moments and wow their listeners with them, both carry out successful campaigns of seductions, both clearly wonder at the end how they are ever going to top themselves--and so on.

A PERSONAL NOTE:
At the age of 17 while still in high school, I, too, discovered a theatrical company full of older, charismatic people. And just like Efron's character, I joined it. Unlike Efron's character, however, I was not so bloody stupid as to get on the wrong side of the director in my first week, nor did I attempt to seduce any member of the company ... well, not in my first week, anyway.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Good Job, 3 Mar 2013
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This review is from: Me and Orson Welles [DVD] (DVD)
I thought that Zac played is role well, It was reasonably entertaining, I like period dramas and was pleasantly please with the overall proformance. I watch for relaxation and do not like any thing to heavy. This was pleasing to me.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Me And Orson Welles, 21 Feb 2012
By 
Mr. Brian Nuttall (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Me and Orson Welles [DVD] (DVD)
Worth buying just to watch the spell binding performance by Christian McKay. His portrayal of Wells will never be surpassed....ever!!!
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars same old advert-made-it-look-so-much-better film, 7 Nov 2010
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This review is from: Me and Orson Welles [DVD] (DVD)
It's always tricky playing the part of a person who people have seen films of... Christopher McKay was going to be compared to Orson Welles in all respects.

Critics have generally gave him extremely positive reviews. I felt like he did an excellent job, but there was still a lack of the fire that made Orson. Zac Efron and Claire Danes were both asthetically pleasing. The movie was generally good natured and gentle, it had a few excellent moments, the soundtrack was good... but as with almost every film, the trailer made it look SO much better than it was.

Having said that, I'm glad I watched it. The backdrop looked amazing, and the initial premise of the film was also very interesting. There is only one part I can recall that was not family-friendly, where a few of the lads were discussing Claire Danes' character in a vulgar way.

Worth seeing if your expectations are not too high. Certainly not a bad film by any means.
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Boring, 15 Sep 2010
By 
Kona (Emerald City) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Me and Orson Welles [DVD] (DVD)
It is 1937, and high school senior Richard (Zac Efron) dreams of being an actor. A chance meeting with 22-year old Orson Welles (Christian McKay) results in a bit part in Welles' groundbreaking, modern-dress version of "Julius Caesar" soon to open on Broadway. During a week of rehearsals at the Mercury Theatre, Richard is befriended by the cast and crew including Welles' assistant, Sonja (Claire Danes) while he tries to understand his flamboyant and temperamental boss.

I think this movie was meant to bring Zac Efron out of teenage musicals and into more serious roles, but it doesn't succeed. His character is bland and forgettable and he lacks charisma. His hipp mannerisms and speech are so contemporary that he looks out of place in the thirties. His love interest, played by Claire Danes, is also colorless and boring. Nothing that happened to or between Richard and Sonja was interesting or memorable. On the other hand, Christian McKay looks and sounds so much like the larger-than-life Welles that one forgets he's not the real thing. Welles' arrogance and theatricality and his brilliant wit make him a dazzling, shining star and he is the entire show.

The plot is tedious and, with the exception of Welles, the characters are dreary, so I recommend this movie only to fans of Welles.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars McKay and Chaplin Shine!, 30 April 2011
This review is from: Me and Orson Welles [DVD] (DVD)
This period drama set in 1937 is o.k but hardly great except for the excellent performance of McKay as Orson Welles and Ben Chaplin as the actor playing Marc Anthony in Orson Welles production of Julius Caesar. Zac Efron lacks the ability to carry this film and this is why the film ultimately fails to impress, fans of High School will be disappointed as this is nothing like that film. It also says this was directed by the director of School of Rock, for fans of school of rock FYI this is also nothing like that film. An enjoyable film if at the same time being nothing out of the ordinary.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars indulgence, 2 Aug 2010
By 
O. P. Cullen - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Me and Orson Welles [DVD] (DVD)
i have to admit that i bought this movie pureley cos i had just seen 17 again with Zac Efron, and im wanted to see just how versatile he can be and i wasn't dissapointed, th movie is a good story not a great one but the character selection brings it to a pleasurable experience. i don't know if i'll watch it a second time or pass it on to friends
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1 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, 21 April 2010
By 
Nobody (London, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Me and Orson Welles [DVD] (DVD)
To be quite honest I was enormously disappointed by this film. I have in the past enjoyed several of Richard Linklater's film like "Slacker" (1991), "Dazed and Confused" (1993) and "Waking Life" (2001) so have always had a measure of expectation when viewing anything new he does. So add to that a film about Orson Welles and I become excited really. The film is based around Orson Welles preparation for his theatre production of "Julius Caesar" in 1937 which was done in modern dress, however this film ironically is done as period piece which sits at odds with what Orson Welles would have done given the same opportunity. The casting of Zac Efron (whoever he is, a teen heart-throb I'm informed) in the lead is a mistake and seems incredibly cynical because he is out performed in almost every scene he is in. Christian McKay does an excellent job in his portrayal of Charles Foster Kane (whoops) I mean Orson Welles via Charles Foster Kane. You see this is a problem because the character had all the mannerism, facial expressions and bravado of CFK. I'm sure a great director and actor like Orson Welles would have severely critical of the formalistic approach in this film. But then again I don't think it was marketed to anyone who actually knows who Orson Welles was.
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