Get local news delivered straight to your phone

30

TUESDAY

Support City Paper!

$
$
$

Your contribution is appreciated.

Whether rewriting cinema’s rulebook with Citizen Kane, clarifying human history in The Third Man, or touting wine in his declining years, Orson Welles was always the man in the contemporary suit. The actor-director exerted himself mightily to make period films, but that wasn’t what American audiences (or moguls) wanted him to do. So he was forced to shoot 1966’s Chimes at Midnight in Spain with a tiny budget and then watch New York critics trash it. Yet this account of Falstaff—collated from the Shakespeare plays that include the character—is now considered as much a masterpiece as any of the director’s movies, as well as one of the finest examples of Shakespeare on celluloid. Welles plays the exuberant Falstaff, who’s left behind as his friend Prince Hal becomes the conniving Henry V. It’s a vision of a country’s loss of soul that just might apply to Hollywood as well. The film screens at 7 p.m. at the Library of Congress’ Mary Pickford Theater, 101 Independence Ave. SE. Free. (202) 707-5677. (Mark Jenkins)