Welles MUST Have Had A Reason for Choosing Robert Arden For The Lead Man
Although Robert Arden was a decidedly weird choice for the lead man in this film, I'm convinced that Welles, at least in his mind, didn't think that it was a mistake at all. All the earlier Welles films that I've viewed show that Welles was very careful and very good at casting just the right actors for his films, and I think that we must look at Welles' choice of Arden as the lead in this film in that light. Surely, Welles' filmography indicates that he was not at all stupid or careless about casting his films, so why would he choose Arden for the lead in this film??? The only sense that I can make of it is that, unlike Welles' earlier films, this whole film seems to be filled with oddball mismatched characters. Looking at it in that light, Arden's character was an oddball among oddballs. I think that Welles was going for some type of cinematic effect in choosing Arden and, in Welles' mind, he achieved it. However, there are many in the audience who obviously don't agree with Welles here.