Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Anybody who is a Hollywood movie buff will not have missed this movie which is hailed as the greatest romantic film in the history of movie making – Casablanca.
Set in the times of World War II, it is a poignant two day, three nights story of two lovers, joined by fate and separated by the same – not once but twice. The story is set in the independent province of Casablanca which is like a dark hole. One desperately wishes to get out of the place using an exit visa to America, but has to cross many hurdles in doing so. A strong cast, a solid story and unshakable conviction portrayed by each of the characters make this movie a “Must-See”. After having placed the hold a long time ago in our library, I got lucky and happened to catch this classic yesterday.
Humphrey Bogart – Rick - the protagonist is neither handsome, nor macho. But one cannot but fall in love with him, for the sheer brilliance with which he portrays emotion with just a twitch of the eyebrow or a smirk and his dialogue delivery. Ingrid Bergman reminded me of the eternal India beauty – Madhubala. Soft features and a mesmerizing smile – she fits like a hand in the glove to the character Ilsa. Torn between the love for a man she can never have and loyalty to her husband – she carves a niche in your heart. Claude Rains plays the role of Capt. Renault, the police officer – a friend of Rick’s. A charming middle aged man, bound by duty, yet ready to sacrifice it for a friend in need.
What captures one most in this movie are the brilliant dialogues and outstanding one-liners. There is not a single line you would want to miss. There are many famous Quotes from this movie.
“Here’s looking at you kid”.
“Play it Sam”.
“Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine”.
“We will always have Paris”
“Loius, I think this is beginning of a beautiful friendship”.
There is one particular scene that made me wonder. A young couple is badly in need of exit visa. The Capt. Promises one at a “Cost”, and sends the young lady to Rick to see a vouch on the Capt.’s character. The young lady asks Rick “If One loves somebody so much, that one is willing to do a bad deed for her loved one’s happiness and hides the bad deed in her heart forever – is one wrong?”. I wondered …. if I had to do something of this sort for somebody I dearly loved, some deed so dark and wrong that it is totally unpardonable, but cannot be escaped just for the happiness of my love – would I be forgiven for doing it ?....