The Other Side of the Wind | Chicago Reader

The Other Side of the Wind

Orson Welles shot this self-referential (and often satirical) drama between 1970 and 1976, but due to extenuating circumstances, was never able to complete it; only in 2017 did a team of filmmakers embark on assembling a feature from Welles’s footage, proceeding according to the many notes he left behind. It’s impossible to say whether the resulting product is what Welles would have created, but what exists certainly provides much food for thought. The story takes place over a 24-hour period during which a lauded, Hemingwayesque filmmaker (John Huston) celebrates his career, presents rushes of his new film, and fends off journalists, proteges, and various hangers-on. The rapid, dizzying montage—similar to that of Welles’s F for Fake (1975)—is so overwhelming that you may have trouble keeping track of the numerous characters and highly personal themes, which range from artistic integrity to sexual anxiety to the differences between our public and private selves. Yet Welles’s bitterness about Hollywood is unmistakable, as is his enthusiasm about the possibilities of filmmaking in the poststudio era. With Peter Bogdanovich and Oja Kodar (who cowrote the script).

Credits

Director:

  • Orson Welles

Cast:

  • John Huston
  • Susan Strasberg
  • Lilli Palmer
  • Dennis Hopper
  • Peter Bogdanovich
  • Oja Kodar
  • Robert Random
  • Edmond O'Brien

Producers:

  • Frank Marshall
  • Filip Rymsza
  • Andrés Vicente Gómez
  • Jon Anderson
  • Dominique Antoine
  • Peter Bogdanovich
  • Olga Kagan

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