Wednesday, May 23, 2012


Although my classic movie rewatch was interrupted last week by the pleasant diversion that was "Downton Abbey", I have actually watched a few movies in the previous weeks.
Having reached the year 1943, I was very happy to watch a favourite of mine and undoubtedly, of many people.
"Casablanca" stars Humphrey Bogart as the charismatic owner of the nightclub "Rick's Cafe Americain" who inevitably must choose between giving in to his love for Ilsa (Ingrid Bergman)  or assisting Ilsa and her Czech resistance leader husband Victor Laszlo (Paul Henreid) to escape from Morocco so that Laszlo can continue to fight the Nazis.

Although I'm sure most people remember the love story in this film more than any other aspect, my personal favourite thing about it is the love/hate relationship between Rick and the crooked police captain Louis Renault (Claude Rains).
I'll always remember how much my Dad loved the very last line of the film:
"Louis, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship". Great movie.

The only other movie I own from 1943 is "The Song of Bernadette".
Jennifer Jones won the Best Actress Oscar that year for her portrayal of the peasant girl, Bernadette, who has visions of the Virgin Mary at Lourdes in 1858.
Quite beautifully done and very moving.

On to 1944 and a complete change of pace:
"Meet Me In St Louis", a musical and in COLOUR.
 I'm surprised at how few and far between the colour movies are on this list so far.
Such a sweet movie with a delightful cast and extremely lavish sets and costumes. 

Last, but never least, one of my absolute all-time favourites
"Arsenic and Old Lace"
This is quite simply hilarious from beginning to end.
Cary Grant is perfect as Mortimer Brewster who, on his wedding day, discovers a surprising secret about his kindly old aunts.

Perfect casting, non-stop entertainment, all-round wonderful film. I will never tire of this one.

"Insanity runs in my family. It practically gallops"


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