Monday, 14 February 2011

A-Z #35: Casablanca

You can pick up hundreds of DVD's for a round-pound each - it doesn't matter. Its never about quantity, its about quality. A-Z is my way of going through my collection, from A-Z, and understanding why I own the films ... or you can tell me why I should sell 'em

#35 - Casablanca 

Why did I buy it?

I did buy this without having seen it and only knowing the critical acclaim. Always seen as on of those untouchable 'Greatest Films of All Time', it was only a short film and I thought, sure, why not. A sweet double-disc, shiney-cardboard edition was released with insightful documentaries and, interestingly, a Looney Tunes homage called Carrotblanca.

Why do I still own it?
Because it truly is incredible. Since purchasing the film, way back in 2005, I have watched it mnay times and even - how perfect is this - watched it with Sarah for a Valentines Day evening of romance. The film is crammed full of classic lines - "Play it again, Sam" not one of them (historical factoid, he says "play it Sam" but at no point says the famous oft-quoted "Play it again, Sam") - such as "of all the bars in all the world..." etc, etc. Romanticand yet, I think, the film is incredibly masculine - the strong central Humphrey Bogart choosing to be without love, so she can have the life she wants.
To finish, I will quote a line that Peter Lorre delivers - my favourite character - to Bogie shortly before Bergman walks into Rick's bar:
Put on the accent, and sound as slimy as you can - and you have my favourite moment.
Maybe classics are not that important? Maybe this is vastly overrated? Is it really worth keeping?

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“You know, Rick, I have many a friend in Casablanca, but somehow, just because you despise me, you are the only one I trust.”


  1. I just saw this a few years ago - on a big screen fortunately - second to only The Godfather as the best American film.

  2. I have to watch this on a big-screen. I managed to watch Godfather Part II on a cinema screen... but CASABLANCA, that would be incredible. I reckon there could be a huge discussion about comparing BRIEF ENCOUNTER with CASABLANCA.


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