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Casablanca
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Reviews & Ratings for
Casablanca More at IMDbPro »

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

As time goes by Casablanca is timeless

10/10
Author: calvinnme from United States
23 September 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Most films about WWII made during WWII are so rah-rah over the top that at midpoint you want to stand up and say "OK, I get it already, the Nazis are eeeeeevil." This one is different. There are bad guys - Conrad Veidt's Major Strasser who practically slithers on his belly and hisses like a snake he is so vile, guys that are so good that their teeth sparkle in the sunlight - Heinreid's Victor Lazlo, and a whole bunch of gray characters just trying to get by - the kind of guys who vote for who they think the winner is going to be in a Presidential election. Maybe these gray characters are truly out for themselves and see it as a game or a matter of survival - Claude Rains's Captain Renault, or maybe they were fighters for the good fight at one time and when karma dealt them a bad blow they became cynical - Bogart's Rick Blaine.

You've got a great supporting cast - Greenstreet, Lorre, Sakall, and Dooley Wilson as Sam, a guy with a rare level head who looks out for Rick and seems to see Rick's cynicism as an illness he has to be nursed through while tickling those ivories - a rare humanizing role for an African American in 1942.

Plus this thing defies all laws of synergy - it works on a grand scale as an entire work of art, but you can break out individual scenes and enjoy them divorced from the rest of the film, and there are great individual lines suitable for framing "I stick my neck out for no man" and " I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here" says Captain Renault as he closes down Rick's and stuffs gambling winnings into his pocket - this last line has almost become a metaphor for American politics and politicians.

Bottom line - Rick Blaine is Han Solo. Both characters were vital to the success of the films in which they starred. People always love a romance/adventure involving a talented cynical loner who ultimately joins or rejoins the good fight for the right reasons, a guy who is a bit too good to be true, and a woman who is torn between actually loving the first kind of man and feeling like she should really love the second kind of man. That is Casablanca and that is Star Wars, but Star Wars does not have Captain Renault and Casablanca does! Wow, I've always been afraid of reviewing Casablanca because I didn't know where to start, and it looks like I just did.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Let's watch it again, Sam

10/10
Author: athomed from United States
28 July 2012

I consider myself an old film buff. There are plenty of pictures from the Golden Era which I appreciate; which satisfy me; which I can stand back and really marvel at. Casablanca is too close to my heart for that. This film is too special. Films like Casablanca or It's a Wonderful Life, the emotion is so red hot that they're still alive today. They make you believe. You could say watching Casablanca is like wrapping yourself in a comfortable blanket, but blankets wear out. It's really like actually spending 102 minutes at Rick's café with the people you care about, whom you grow fonder of with each visit. That's Casablanca to me.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Escape to another time

9/10
Author: ThreeGuysOneMovie from United States
3 June 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Play it again Sam". "We'll always have Paris". "Here's lookin' at you kid". "Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world she walks into mine".

These famous lines are just a few amongst the many memorable lines in the 1942 blockbuster Casablanca that was re-released Wednesday, March 21st to commemorate the monster classic's 70th anniversary. I was not about to wait for Casablanca's 100th Anniversary screening to see the hit movie on the big screen so I purchased a ticket to enter a silver screen time portal to view the film the way it was meant to be seen…….on the big screen. Unfortunately, the prices of the ticket, the popcorn and the soda did not go back in time but if there is a movie that is worth every cent of admission and snacks it is Casablanca.

For the very few of you who are not familiar with the plot of Casablanca here is a very brief synopsis of the classic. It is WWII and Casablanca is a haven for refugees who are escaping the stronghold of the Nazi military in eastern Europe. Escapees are willing to do whatever it takes to Get from Eastern Europe to Casablanca, Morocco to Lisbon, Portugal and finally, to absolute freedom in America. Rick's Americain Cafe is a hotbed of political corruption and refugee deal making in the tumultuous city of Casablanca. As interesting and complex the goings ons at Rick's may be it really just serves as a sub-plot to one of the most famous love affairs in movie history between the beautiful Ilsa Lund played by Ingrid Bergman and the timeless, cool, calm and collected Rick Blaine who owns Rick's Americain Cafe played by, of course, Humphrey Bogart.

I am not going to waste your time by going any further with the plot summary of this movie but I will say that with each time I see this phenomenon of a movie I am more and more amazed by the screen writing of Philip and Julius Epstein with Howard Koch. Incredible as the performances that are given by Peter Lorre(Ugarte), Claude Rains (Capt. Renault), Paul Henried (Victor Laszlo), Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman the ingenious screen writing of the Epsteins and Koch cannot be overlooked. To write a screenplay that embodies the beautiful complexities of love and the heinous complexities of WW2 politics is truly a feat of artistic genius displayed by the Epstein's and Koch. As the old saying goes, they don't make movies like this anymore.

Unfortunately time portals are not yet a reality but a movie theater is a great place to escape to another time, especially if you are seeing a classic like Casablanca. For those of you who have not seen Casablanca on the big screen please do not miss the next chance you have to do so. Here's to Casablanca being played again Sam.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

a top selection for altruistic reasons

9/10
Author: Marc Israel from United States
3 June 2012

Let's not rehash the old accolades of Bogie & Bergman which still ring true. I watch this over and over because it represents a type of commitment and honor that I believe we all wish we were capable of. The dialog is full of the utmost courtesy, while the humor can bob and weave into the script that still manages to pull the romance through the end. The side characters are very strong, if not stereotypically played out, but ultimately memorable, none the less. Of all the quotes that echo, it is Ricks' heartbreak and bitterness wrapped up in his replying if he remembered Ilsa, "The Germans wore gray, you wore blue." War, romance, humor and dignity and all in seven words, that's class!

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

The Ultimate Romance

10/10
Author: (ilvatz) from United States
13 May 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This movie was by far one of the best romances that I have ever seen. It is generally not my favorite genre of movie but the raw emotion present throughout this masterpiece greatly moved me. The cinematography of this film is just absolutely beautiful. Every scene seems like it was shot less as a method of capturing a story, but more as if trying to paint a beautiful picture. The sets sometimes seem to frame characters at important moments in the plot and the heavy use of contrast to create very shadowy scenes sets the mood for a mysterious romance so perfectly that you can only call it a masterpiece. I found the acting to be masterful. The characters that the actors and actresses portrayed were done so flawlessly that i couldn't find a single character who i didn't think was portrayed beautifully. They captured the raw emotion of the characters and i almost believed that I was watching real events unfold before my eyes.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Classic for a Reason

9/10
Author: kevin_m_sullivan from New York, United States
11 May 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Casablanca is truly a fantastic demonstration of cinematic storytelling. Physically speaking, the film is beautifully constructed. The cinematography is consistently fluid and makes great use of both high-key and low-key lighting. The set design is seemingly flawless, as is the acting, particularly the performances delivered by leads Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. Above all else, I think the writing made Casablanca the classic film that it is. There are countless quotable lines, and the film (and specific scenes) has been parodied into oblivion. The editing in Casablanca continues to contribute to the film's soundness. Various techniques employed severely impact the quality of the storytelling, particularly the film's famous flashback. A+ all around.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

One of the Best...

9/10
Author: Vaughn Thompson from United States
11 May 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

There has to be something wrong with this movie... ummm... I can't think of anything so I guess I'll actually have to write about the things I LIKE?

It has a phenomenal story that is even more greatly emphasized with the United States joining the war in Europe. Though it was a current even then, the war setting was the perfect back-drop. It provided tension and one of the greatest and most iconic endings in movie history.

It was edited and written very well. Small morsel just big enough to tease us at the right times provided us with necessary knowledge. It was light-hearted in just the right places.

And the acting! Bogart and Bergman were made for each other. Well, in the movies at least.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

best movies ever made

Author: s-varian from United States
8 May 2012

Casablanca is an iconic movie that allows us a cultural freeze into the time period. Humphrey Bogart, and Ingrid Bergman are phenomenal actors and they give an explosive and life changing performance. There is an air tight plot with an extremely well written screen play. The pacing is awesome. The themes in Casablanca were life altering as well. The price of freedom is worth any sacrifice. There's a memorably music score, there are tons and tons of great quotes.

The entire plot is action packed and it is satisfying story line that keeps the audience interested and on the edge of their seats. The ending is one of the most beautiful and satisfying endings of any movie, it's extremely beautiful and calming. Overall Casablanca is one of the best movies ever made.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

my thoughts

Author: wolfmagena from United States
2 May 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

this movie is rightly a classic. let me just say that I love this movie. it is one my top ten of all time favorites and number one on classic movies. I remember the first time i watched this movie was with my grandmother I also feel that is was brilliant to make the character Rick symbolize America"s actions during the beginning of ww2 And seeing the time this movie was made is why there is no real winner because the nation hoped they would be on the winning side of the war but they had no way of knowing. and i just love how they included the nations feelings of the war into the movie. This movie has every thing love, mystery, suspense, guns, good music.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

You probably already know half the script to this movie

9/10
Author: wandereramor from Canada
26 April 2012

"Here's looking at you, kid." "I'm shocked, shocked, to find that gambling is going on in this establishment." "Of all the gin joints in the world, you had to walk into mine." "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. " "I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship." "Play it again, Sam."

Casablanca has taken such an elevated place in pop culture, its images and quotes (like the ones above) seeped into so many TV shows and movies to follow it, that when you actually get around to watching it it can seem a little underwhelming. Bogart and Bergman are Bogart and Bergman of course, and can charm the pants off anyone living or dead, but there's a lot of melodrama and a distinctly saggy middle. By the halfway point you might even be ready to write this off as one of those films that's important but not necessarily a great watch for a modern audience.

And then comes in the third act, a powerful and blisteringly-paced series of climaxes, and all of your earlier skepticism was wiped away and you're rooting wholeheartedly for Rick and Ilsa and their doomed romance. Or at least I was. What sets Casablanca apart from so many of its contemporaries is its ambiguous morality -- not the universal cynicism of most noir movies but a mature perspective that can see good in evil as well as vice versa. Most importantly, it juxtaposes what we want as viewers and what's actually the right thing to do in a way few movies do.

In short, even if you've received most of the plot and scenes through cultural osmosis, Casablanca is still worth watching, if only for that heart-wrenching climax.

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