The Magnificent Ambersons

The Magnificent Ambersons

Poster for The Magnificent Ambersons

Orson Welles' majestic follow-up to Citizen Kane, based on Booth Tarkington's tragic novel on the declining fortunes of the Amberson family in 1870s America, set against a backdrop of progress as the 'horseless carriage' takes over the country. More

Famously, the picture was recut by its studio - RKO - while Welles was away in Brazil. The edits removed over an hour of footage (later destroyed) and added an upbeat ending. Welles would go on to say the end result looked as if it had been "edited by a lawnmower". The editor (who under orders from the studio) was Robert Wise, would go on to direct The Sound of Music. He maintained the final version was superior to the original. Despite the mangling, the film was nominated for four Oscars including Best Picture.

Less
1942Rating: PG88 minsUSA
DramaRomance

The Magnificent Ambersons | Reviews

89%45 reviews

Rotten Tomatoes® Score

All reviews on Rotten Tomatoes
The Times

The Times

Exquisitely beautiful film-making...

Full review
Chicago Reader

Chicago Reader

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

Full review
The New Yorker

The New Yorker

Agnes Moorehead is uncannily powerful, in a hyperrealistic way. (It’s a classic performance.)

Full review
BBC

BBC

Welles' technical brilliance shines through, securing the film its classic status.

Full review

The Magnificent Ambersons | Release Details

We aren’t aware of any way to watch The Magnificent Ambersons in New Zealand. If we’ve got that wrong, please contact us.