mteal wrote:during the scene where Hal kills Hotspur, you can see an automobile in the background!
That may not be a flaw so much as it could be a sly reference to Don Quixote
Interesting that the consensus seems to side with the "both 1.85 and 1.37" conclusion. Welles obviously created some of the most extraordinary Academy compositions of all time. The urge to side with "Academy is correct" is very strong, especially if one doesn't see boom mics and C-stands in the frame while watching it un-letterboxed.
A letterboxed film may not cut off heads and hats and feet, but it will emphasize the horizontals and create a different dynamic with diagonal lines, vertical lines, and curves (like Janet Leigh's curves). This may be "interesting" and even exciting, composition-wise, but we should ask ourselves if this is truly "Wellesian." The unfortunate corollary to that question is that we can't ask the man himself - in fact, I start hearing Elmyr de Hory snickering in the back of my mind. You know that Welles/Elmyr would chide an expert on matters of how to properly identify a master's work.
Still - while composing for both widescreen (theater) and Academy (TV broadcasts) is extremely difficult to do well, it can be done. Kubrick did it, and if Kubrick could do it, there's no doubt that Welles could, too.
By the way, I'm also "Jaime," and while I don't post very often, it might avoid confusion to differentiate between two Jaime's on the same thread.