Directed by: Michael Curtiz
Written by: Julius J. Epstein and Phillip G. Epstein
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, and Paul Henreid
Reviewed by: Joe Sikes (Guest Reviewer and friend of 3guys)
“Play it again Sam”.
“We’ll always have Paris”.
“Here’s lookin’ at you kid”.
“Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world she walks into mine”.
These famous lines are just a few amongst the many memorable lines in the 1942 blockbuster Casablanca that was re-released Wednesday, March 21st to commemorate the monster classic’s 70th anniversary. I was not about to wait for Casablanca’s 100th Anniversary screening to see the hit movie on the big screen so I purchased a ticket to enter a silver screen time portal to view the film the way it was meant to be seen…….on the big screen.
Unfortunately, the prices of the ticket, the popcorn and the soda did not go back in time but if there is a movie that is worth every cent of admission and snacks it is Casablanca.
For the very few of you who are not familiar with the plot of Casablanca here is a very brief synopsis of the classic. It is WWII and Casablanca is a haven for refugees who are escaping the stronghold of the Nazi military in eastern Europe. Escapees are willing to do whatever it takes to Get from Eastern Europe to Casablanca, Morocco to Lisbon, Portugal and finally, to absolute freedom in America. Rick’s Americain Cafe is a hotbed of political corruption and refugee deal making in the tumultuous city of Casablanca. As interesting and complex the goings ons at Rick’s may be it really just serves as a sub-plot to one of the most famous love affairs in movie history between the beautiful Ilsa Lund played by Ingrid Bergman and the timeless, cool, calm and collected Rick Blaine who owns Rick’s Americain Cafe played by, of course, Humphrey Bogart.
I am not going to waste your time by going any further with the plot summary of this movie but I will say that with each time I see this phenomenon of a movie I am more and more amazed by the screenwriting of Philip and Julius Epstein with Howard Koch. Incredible as the performances that are given by Peter Lorre(Ugarte), Claude Rains (Capt. Renault), Paul Henried (Victor Laszlo), Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman the ingenious screenwriting of the Epsteins and Koch cannot be overlooked. To write a screenplay that embodies the beautiful complexities of love and
the heinous complexities of WW2 politics is truly a feat of artistic genius displayed by the Epstein’s and Koch. As the old saying goes, they don’t make movies like this anymore.
Unfortunately time portals are not yet a reality but a movie theater is a great place to escape to another time, especially if you are seeing a classic like Casablanca. For those of you who have not seen Casablanca on the big screen please do not miss the next chance you have to do so. Here’s to Casablanca being played again Sam.