7.8/10
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50 user 78 critic

F for Fake (1973)

A documentary about fraud and fakery.

Directors:

, (uncredited) | 2 more credits »

Writer:

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
François Reichenbach ...
Himself - Special Participant
...
...
...
Himself
Edith Irving ...
Herself
David Walsh ...
Himself
...
Himself - Special Participant
Richard Wilson ...
Himself - Special Participant
...
Himself - Special Participant
...
Himself (archive footage)
Richard Drewitt ...
Himself - Associate Producer (as Richard Drewett)
Alexander Welles ...
Special Participant (as Sasa Devcic)
Gary Graver ...
Special Participant
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Storyline

Orson Welles' free-form documentary about fakery focusses on the notorious art forger Elmyr de Hory and Elmyr's biographer, Clifford Irving, who also wrote the celebrated fraudulent Howard Hughes autobiography, then touches on the reclusive Hughes and Welles' own career (which started with a faked resume and a phony Martian invasion). On the way, Welles plays a few tricks of his own on the audience. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

fraud | biographer | ibiza | hoax | expert | See All (33) »

Genres:

Documentary

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| |

Language:

| |

Release Date:

12 March 1975 (France)  »

Also Known As:

F for Fake  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

An excerpt of Welles' legendary 1930s 'War of the Worlds' broadcast was recreated for this film; however none of the dialogue heard in the movie actually matches what was originally radio broadcast. See more »

Goofs

The word "practitioners" is misspelled "practioners" in the opening credits. See more »

Quotes

Orson Welles: With your permission, a bit of verse by Kipling: When first the flush of a new-born sun fell on the green and gold / Our father Adam sat under the tree and scratched with a stick in the mold / And the first rude sketch that the world had seen was joy to his mighty heart / Till the Devil whispered behind the leaves, 'It's pretty, but is it Art?'
See more »

Connections

Featured in TCM Guest Programmer: Penn & Teller (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

 
nothing is real
27 May 2011 | by See all my reviews

Orson Welles's final completed movie deals with fakery, and in particular with two of the most notorious forgers of the twentieth century. "F is for Fakes" (also called "F for Fake") is not really a movie or documentary as much as a look at how we interpret art, and what we WANT to interpret about anything that is essentially fake. Welles proudly calls himself a charlatan while performing magic tricks and coming up with all sorts of ways to play with the audience. I personally had never heard of Elmyr de Hory until watching this, but Welles turns him into a very interesting person.

All in all, the director known as a boy genius had a fine end to his career. Welles created a truly mind-bending look at the concept of art. The fact that the movie came out around the time that Clifford Irving's scandal broke (he wrote a forged biography of Howard Hughes) certainly adds to the documentary's quality. Can there truly be any more definite reality left in the world?


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