November 24, 2022

ALL GREAT LOVE STORIES...:

Watching 'Casablanca' on its 80th anniversary, we remain in awe of its simplicity - and profound depth (Ben McCann, Nov 24, 2022, MercatorNet)

Casablanca's clearest theme is that neutrality - whether in war or in love - is difficult to maintain.

At the outset, Rick is staunchly apolitical: he is jaded, unmoved by the refugee crisis unfolding around him.

But we also learn Rick has been involved in political causes, supporting losing sides against the Fascists in Spain and Ethiopia. The film traces that ambivalence through Bogart's masterful performance. His cynicism gradually softens once Ilsa turns up, and his animosity to the Nazi chief Strasser grows.

This political about-face comes to a head in one of the greatest scenes in Hollywood cinema: the singing of La Marseillaise at Rick's Café in full defiance of the Nazi officers belting out a German anthem.

It is a deeply patriotic and uplifting scene, and reminds us of cinema's power to engage us, move us and make us cheer.

It also turns the night-club into a microcosm for the war, with it multinational clientele and the competing strands of partisanship, neutrality, aggression and political commitment.

For an America wary of entering the European theatre, scenes like this reminded audiences of the need to fight injustice, intolerance and belligerence.


...detail the brotherhood between two men.

Posted by at November 24, 2022 3:23 PM

  

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