Monday, December 3, 2012

Movie of the Week – Casablanca

This week’s movie: Casablanca (1942).

The film is about Rick Blaine, a cantina owner in North Africa in the early days of WWII (on the brink of Nazi occupation) who is reunited with the girl he loved but lost, Ilsa. Things are made complicated when Ilsa gets mixed up with Nazis and needs Rick’s help.

Director Michael Curtiz won an Oscar for the film (his only one), and it is probably his greatest film. However, fans might also want to check out Captain Blood, The Adventures of Robin Hood (his other famous film), Angels with Dirty Faces (a great gangster film), The Sea Hawk, Yankee Doodle Dandy, and Mildred Pierce.

Curtiz worked with composer Max Steiner, cinematographer Arthur Edeson and art director Carl Jules Weyl on the film. Between the three of them they have four Oscar wins and twenty-five additional nominations.

The cast is iconic giving possibly their most memorable performances, especially the leads: Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. Claude Rains, Paul Henreid, Peter Lorre, and Dooley Wilson make up a great supporting group.

Casablanca won three Oscars including Best Picture, but has since become even more critically acclaimed. It is the twenty-fifth highest rated film on IMDB and number two on AFI’s list of the 100 best American films of all-time.

Aside from its canonization into the elite films in cinema history or its iconic moments (which there are many), Casablanca is at its core a wonderful and slightly sad love story. It is a must-see for fans of classic films.

Trailer: Here
Available on: Blu-ray, DVD and Streaming

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