"Casablanca" (1942) B&W. Runtime: 102 min. Ingrid Bergman & Humprey Bogart costar in this drama of early WW-II intrigue that was nominated for 8 Oscars (& won 3: best picture, screenplay, actor). We saw it in our 1ce/mos. series of "Great Films @ the Cathedral." Its supporting cast was magnificent and huge (Paul Henreid, Claud Raines, Conrad Veidt, Sydney Greenstreet, Peter Lorre, SZ Sakall, Dooley Wilson). "Casablanca" currently ranks #16 of IMDb's all time best 250 films: Casablanca (1942) - IMDb It is also on Roger Ebert's list of Great Films: Casablanca :: rogerebert.com :: Great Movies
It's a tale pitting those who are (or have been) active in the resistance to the Nazis along with those who are just trying to survive by hook or crook. Rick (Bogart) was active in the French resistance to the Nazis during which time he met and fell in love with Ilsa (Bergman). Fleeing the Nazi occupation of Paris and feeling deserted by Ilsa, he's moved into the survivalist camp and runs an "American style" cafe with bar and gaming in French Morocco. Ilsa and her husband (Henreid) with whom she's reunited after believing him to be dead, show up unintentionally in Rick's cafe, hoping to find passage to a safer place.
IMO, Ebert's review is very worthwhile & helpful. In it, among other things, we learn the story line was written while it was being filmed so Bergman (& others) didn't know the outcome until the actual filming. The Bio on Dooley Wilson ("Sam, the piano player," see Cast/bio in IMDb) shows us that his career took off after this movie.
My rating is 10/10. The music in the cafe was seamlessly integrated into the narrative and became essentially an additional supporting cast member. I don't recall Bergman ever being so lovely--but how in the world did women of that time pack and travel with those hats?
Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]
Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
LOL about the hats. Your timing is impeccable; as this just ran on TCM this past week and I mentioned catching it one night. Running again this wknd, I believe. Check your local listings, as they say.
It is a classic by every definition of the word. What could have been just a routine melodrama with a wartime setting became -- thanks to a number of happy accidents -- THE quintessential romance story. But not in an icky chick-flick way; Bogart's tough-as-nails exterior (and we find out that yes, it is only an exterior) staves off the treacle.
As does the notion that Ilsa Lund, for a major portion of the film, comes off as a very, very bad girl!
Everything works. Everything. Curtiz' direction. Every single performance (I love the international flavor of the cast, from Peter Lorre to Conreid Veidt to Cuddles Sakhall, even Norma Varden as a pickpocket victim) is a gem.
I was lucky enough to see "Casablanca" on a big screen with a large audience and something emerged that I hadn't considered on the small screen @ home: the wit. In an audience setting, Claude Raines brings a scalawag's humor to the role that brought big laughs along the way.
In fact, emotions run the gamut. For despite the number of viewings, I cannot help getting mushy at the battle of the anthems ("Wacht am Rhein," which is drowned out by "Les Marsielles") that unfolds in Rick's.
Kelrobin Cleveland Street Denizen, CGC, RN [Parker]
"Dear George: Remember, no man is a failure who has friends. Thanks for the wings. Love, Clarence" -- IAWL Screenplay (1946)