Study Guide

Citizen Kane Scene 20

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Scene 20

Scene 20

  • Charles walks in on Susan while she's putting together a huge jigsaw puzzle in a huge empty room in Kane's Xanadu mansion.
  • Susan says she might go crazy without someone to talk to or have fun with. She wishes she were in the hustle and bustle of New York City. She wants to have fun and be with people.
  • Charles will hear nothing of it though. In his mind, Xanadu is their home and they should be satisfied with it.
  • Now we get a montage showing Susan putting her puzzle together. It's all so boring it makes you want to go crazy… and Susan feels the same way.
  • Later on, Charles comes back downstairs and asks Susan if they can go on a picnic the next day. As they drive to the Florida seaside, Susan tells him he never gives her anything she really cares about.
  • She continues the same speech in their picnic tent, saying that Charles wants everyone to love him and that's what his money is all about. She only stops when Charles slaps her in the face.
  • Susan tells Charles not to tell her he's sorry, but Charles says he isn't sorry at all for hitting her.
  • Next thing you know, Susan is packing her things. Charles storms into her room and tells her she's crazy for leaving him while they have all kinds of guests in the house. She doesn't care about what they think, though.
  • Charles makes one last effort to keep Susan around by promising her whatever she wants on her own terms. But he makes the mistake of ending with "You can't do this to me." Once again, he's shown that everything in his life is all about him. Susan can tell by his language that he hasn't changed, so she leaves.

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