Citizen Kane seems to me to be the Oresteia of American Cinema. Presented ritualistically since its release, it is the tragic tale of a king who had everything but what he wanted because he never wanted what he had. It is the most American of stories. It is the story of wealth and fame and celebrity and America. It is the cautionary tale of ceaseless want and the cost paid by the individual and the world when you are never satisfied, no matter how big or opulent the portion you are served. What could be more American than that? There is comfort to us mortals in being told that the obscenely wealthy and powerful aren’t really happy. It may not be a true story, but it’s one we like to be told. And to date there is no better telling of that story than Citizen Kane. I can’t even remember the first time I saw this movie, but like the festival of Dionysus, it is a rite I will observe again and again.