World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

The Hearts of Age

Article Id: WHEBN0003347721
Reproduction Date:

Title: The Hearts of Age  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Orson Welles, Woodstock, Illinois, Citizen Kane, Films directed by Orson Welles, The Cradle Will Rock
Collection:
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

The Hearts of Age

The Hearts of Age
Directed by Orson Welles
William Vance
Written by Orson Welles
Starring Orson Welles
Virginia Nicolson
William Vance
Edgerton Paul
Blackie O'Neal
Release dates
  • 1934 (1934)
Running time
8 minutes
Country United States
Language Silent film

The Hearts of Age is an early film made by Orson Welles. The film is an eight-minute short that he co-directed with friend William Vance in 1934. The film stars Welles's first wife, Virginia Nicolson, and Welles himself. He made the film while still attending the Todd School for Boys in Woodstock, Illinois, at the age of 19.

Contents

  • Plot 1
  • Cast 2
  • Background 3
  • Home media 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Plot

An elderly woman sits on a bell as it rocks back and forth, while a servant in blackface pulls at a rope. A dandified gentleman appears at the top of a stairway and doffs his hat to the lady; he smiles and courts her attention. She does not respond, but the servant hangs himself. The scene changes to an darkened interior: the gentleman sits at a grand piano and plays, but something is wrong. He opens the piano's lid and finds the woman lying inside, dead. He leafs through a number of tombstone-shaped cards with different inscriptions - "Sleeping", "At Rest", "With The Lord" - and finally chooses one that says "The End".

The film's action, such as it is, is intercut with random shots of bells, headstones, a church cross and other images, sometimes printed in negative. Many years later Welles acknowledged that the film was an imitation of the early surrealist films of Luis Bunuel and Jean Cocteau. He did not consider it a serious piece of work, and was amused at the idea of being added to his creative canon.[1]

Cast

  • Orson Welles as Death
  • Virginia Nicolson as the Old Woman/Keystone Kop
  • William Vance as the Indian in blanket
  • Edgerton Paul as the Bell-ringer in blackface
  • Blackie O'Neal

Background

Many point to The Hearts of Age as an important precursor to Welles's first Hollywood film, Citizen Kane. Welles and Vance were college friends. The latter's only other film on record is another student short – an adaptation of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde in 1932.

Cast member Charles "Blackie" O'Neal became a screenwriter (The Seventh Victim) and the father of actor Ryan O'Neal.[2]:61[3][4]

Home media

The Hearts of Age is a home movie and no copyright was ever filed. The film is in the public domain. The once-rare film is easily seen today thanks to DVD extras and sites such as YouTube.

The film was released by Kino on the first DVD in its Avant Garde series, Avant-Garde: Experimental Cinema of the 1920s and '30s (August 2, 2005, UPC 738329040222). The DVD was produced from the film holdings of the Raymond Rohauer Collection by Bret Wood.[5]

References

  1. ^ The Orson Welles Story", Arena, BBC TV 1982.
  2. ^ Brady, Frank, Citizen Welles: A Biography of Orson Welles. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1989 ISBN 0-385-26759-2
  3. ^ "The Hearts of Age". Frye, Brian L.,  
  4. ^ "Charles O'Neal".  
  5. ^ "Avant Garde - Experimental Cinema of the 1920s & 1930s".  

External links


This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 



Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from School eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.