Citizen Kane

Citizen Kane quotes

65 total quotes (ID: 692)

Charles Foster Kane
Jedediah Leland
Mr. Bernstein
Multiple Characters


[I entered this campaign]...with one purpose only, to point out and make public the dishonesty, the downright villainy of Boss Jim W. Gettys' political machine, now in complete control of the government of this state. I made no campaign promises, because until a few weeks ago, I had no hope of being elected. Now however, I am something more than a hope. Jim Gettys, Jim Gettys has something less than a chance. Every straw vote, every independent poll shows that I'll be elected. Now I can afford to make some promises. The working man, the working man and the slum child know they can expect my best efforts in their interests. The nation's ordinary citizens know that I'll do everything in my power to protect the underprivileged, the underpaid, and the underfed.


Newsreel Narrator: [at beginning of news reel on Charles Foster Kane's death] Legendary was Xanadu where Kubla Khan decreed his stately pleasure dome. Today, almost as legendary is Florida's Xanadu, world's largest private pleasure ground. Here, on the deserts of the Gulf Coast, a private mountain was commissioned and successfully built. One hundred thousand trees, twenty thousand tons of marble are the ingredients of Xanadu's mountain. Contents of Xanadu's palace: paintings, pictures, statues, the very stones of many another palace - a collection of everything so big it can never be catalogued or appraised, enough for ten museums - the loot of the world. Xanadu's livestock: the fowl of the air, the fish of the sea, the beast of the field and jungle. Two of each, the biggest private zoo since Noah. Like the pharaohs, Xanadu's landlord leaves many stones to mark his grave. Since the pyramids, Xanadu is the costliest monument a man has built to himself. Here in Xanadu last week, Xanadu's landlord was laid to rest, a potent figure of our century, America's Kubla Khan - Charles Foster Kane.

Walter Parks Thatcher: [Quoting from Kane's letter] "Sorry but I'm not interested in gold mines, oil wells, shipping or real estate...One item on your list intrigues me, the New York Inquirer, a little newspaper I understand we acquired in a foreclosure proceeding. Please don't sell it. I'm coming back to America to take charge. I think it would be fun to run a newspaper." I think it would be fun to run a newspaper. Grrr.

Charles: I set back the sacred cause of reform, is that it? All right, that's the way they want it, the people have made their choice. It's obvious the people prefer Jim Gettys to me.
Leland: You talk about the people as though you owned them, as though they belong to you. Goodness. As long as I can remember, you've talked about giving the people their rights, as if you can make them a present of Liberty, as a reward for services rendered...Remember the working man?
Charles: I'll get drunk too, Jedediah, if it'll do any good.
Leland: Aw, it won't do any good. Besides, you never get drunk. You used to write an awful lot about the workingman...He's turning into something called organized labor. You're not going to like that one little bit when you find out it means that your workingman expects something is his right, not as your gift! Charlie, when your precious underprivileged really get together, oh boy! That's going to add up to something bigger than your privileges! Then I don't know what you'll do! Sail away to a desert island probably and lord it over the monkeys!
Charles: I wouldn't worry about it too much, Jed. There'll probably be a few of them there to let me know when I do something wrong.
Leland: Mmm, you may not always be so lucky...You don't care about anything except you. You just want to persuade people that you love 'em so much that they ought to love you back. Only you want love on your own terms. Something to be played your way, according to your rules.

Newsreel Narrator: ...Alone in his never-finished, already decaying pleasure palace, aloof, seldom visited, never photographed, an emperor of new strength continued to direct his failing empire, varyingly attempted to sway as he once did the destinies of a nation that had ceased to listen to him, ceased to trust him. Then last week, as it must to all men, death came to Charles Foster Kane.

Susan: [referring to Xanadu] Oh, a person could go crazy in this dump with nobody to talk to, nobody to have any fun with...49,000 acres of nothin' but scenery and statues. I'm lonesome.

Rawlston: Maybe he told us all about himself on his deathbed...Yeah, maybe he didn't...All we saw on that screen was a big American...One of the biggest...But how is he any different from Ford? Or Hearst for that matter? Or John Doe...I'll tell ya, it comes from a man's dying words...What were they?...You don't read the papers...When Charles Foster Kane died, he said just one word -...Rosebud, just that one word, but who is she...What was it?...Here's a man that could have been president, who was as loved and hated and as talked about as any man in our time. But when he comes to die, he's got something on his mind called 'Rosebud.' Now what does that mean?...A racehorse he bet on once...Yeah, that didn't come in...All right, but what was the race?

Susan: Love! You don't love anybody! Me or anybody else! You want to be loved - that's all you want! I'm Charles Foster Kane. Whatever you want - just name it and it's yours! Only love me! Don't expect me to love you.

Rosebud... Opening line; his last word as he dies.

Charles: Now look, Mr. Carter, here's a front-page story in the Chronicle about a Mrs. Harry Silverstone in Brooklyn who's missing. Now, she's probably murdered. Here's a picture of her in the Chronicle. Why isn't there something about it in the Inquirer?
Carter: 'Cause we're running a newspaper...
...
Carter: There's no proof that that woman is murdered, or even that she's dead...It's not our function to report the gossip of housewives. If we were interested in that kind of thing, Mr. Kane, we could fill the paper twice over daily.
Charles: Mr. Carter, that's the kind of thing we are going to be interested in, from now on.

Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Cornell, Switzerland... he was thrown out of a lot of colleges.

Raymond: [last lines] Throw that junk in.

Rawlston: It isn't enough to tell us what a man did. You've got to tell us who he was.

Charles Foster Kane III: Mother, is Pop governor yet?
Emily: Not yet, Junior.

Charles: You know, Mr. Bernstein, if I hadn't been very rich, I might have been a really great man.
Walter Parks Thatcher: Don't you think you are?
Charles: I think I did pretty well under the circumstances.
Walter Parks Thatcher: What would you like to have been?
Charles: Everything you hate.