Stories I Love: Casablanca

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There are some movies that are sacred, some movies that should never be remade. One of those films is the 1942 classic, Casablanca. Starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, Casablanca tells the story of refugees in Morocco looking for safe passage to American during World War II. Of course, like in any war, there is money to be made and getting the letters of transit necessary to escape Morocco comes at a steep cost.

Rick Blane, an American expatriate, runs a popular nightclub. It is here where much of the wheeling and dealing in Casablanca goes down. But Rick takes no interest in the plight of his patrons, famously stating, “I stick my neck out for nobody.” Rick is carrying a secret and one day, that secret enters his bar in the form of Ilsa Lund (Bergman). Rick’s whole demeanor changes when he encounters Ilsa. The story unfolds as does one of the most famous love stories in cinema history.

Casablanca won best picture and rightfully so. Though it was produced in 1942, Casablanca doesn’t age. The cinematography, direction, and performances shine. But it is the script that really takes center stage. The entire film is a master class in screenwriting and has some of the most iconic movie lines of all time. In fact, I would argue that the last ten minutes of the film are some of the best in cinema history.

The real strength of the film is the chemistry between Bogart and Bergman. Both amazing actors in their own right, the scenes Bogart and Bergman share are some of the best in the film. When the movie reaches its famous climax, it is Bogart and Bergman who help Casablanca stick the landing.

If you have not yet watched Casablanca, rent it immediately. You will not be disappointed.

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