The American film Casablanca is a romantic drama released in 1942, directed by Michael Curtis. The action takes place in the city of Casablanca, Morocco at the end of 1941, during World War II. The main characters are played by brilliant actors: Rick Blaine played by Humphrey Bogart, Ilsa Lund played by Ingrid Bergman and Victor Laszlo played by Paul Henreid.
In 1943, the film won three Oscars in the categories: “Best Picture”, “Best Director” and “Best Screenplay”. If we add the charismatic actors and the magic music, we can understand why the film Casablanca became a masterpiece.
Rick Blaine, the cynical owner of Rick’s Café Americain
Rick Blaine runs Rick’s Café Americain. The cafe is a place frequented by a varied clientele. Part of this clientele are refugees. They come here in order to get transit letters that allow them to go to Portugal and then to America. At the beginning of the story, Rick is a cold and cynical person. Things change when Ilsa Lund appears in his cafe.
Rick: Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine.
Ilsa Lund is his former lover from Paris. They met and fell in love in Paris in 1940. Ilsa and Rick planned to leave Paris together , but she did not arrive at the station.
Now Ilsa is accompanied by her husband, the leader of the Czech resistance, Victor Laszlo. Laszlo escaped the Nazis three times, and the Gestapo took measures to capture him in Casablanca. They need two transit letters to escape to America. She asks Rick to help them.
Ilsa realizes that she still loves Rick. She deeply admires and respects her husband, but her heart belongs to Rick. Her heart is torn between the two men and she asks Rick to decide what is best for them. We realize that under Rick’s cynical mask hides a sensitive heart, he is able to sacrifice himself for an ideal.
Rick: Inside of us, we both know you belong with Victor. You’re part of his work, the thing that keeps him going. If that plane leaves the ground and you’re not with him, you’ll regret it. Maybe not today. Maybe not tomorrow, but soon and for the rest of your life.
Memorable lines from Casablanca
Many lines from Casablanca are memorable. One the greatest lines is “Here’s looking at you, kid.” This is Rick’s favorite phrase in which he expresses his affection for Ilsa, proving that their love continues to endure, despite all the barriers.
Another memorable phrase is the one in which Ilsa asks Sam, Rick’s pianist, to sing her and Rick’s song: “Play it, Sam. Play ‘As Time Goes By.’”
“We will always have Paris“. These are the words which Rick says to Ilsa. And this means that their love story will remain immortal.
The final line of the film is also famous: “this could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.”
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