Day Two: France as Subject, Films from any country, may take place in France or have French characters or French actors, French source material, or France is significant.
When I first saw the announcement post over at Serendipitous Anachronisms I really did have to quickly jump in and claim Casablanca as my film to write about as part of the France on Film Blogathon. Why exactly? Well let’s start by saying my love for that film has grown incredibly over the past few years since that first ever viewing when I totally fell in love with it all, with each viewing it has become more and more important in showing my love for film. It is incredible from start to finish and yes it is set mainly in Casablanca but France has such a key role to play in this film.
That is going to be my starting point for France having a massive significance in this film, with a truly incredible and powerful scene featuring the National Anthem. As they drown out the German’s and really show unity. If this doesn’t make you feel very emotional I don’t think much else will in all honesty. It is unexpected in the way the film is going and really does boast such a turning moment in what may happen next.
Rick is a broken man and that is all down to the love affair he had in Paris with a woman he really thought he was going to be with. At this point in the film though we don’t understand the way he is with well let’s face it everyone. I have to include the little moment below due to the fact it shows he is just not interested!
Ilsa well we all know she just happens to walk into his gin joints, you know out of all the gin joints in all the world . . . Yeah you get the gist. But we really have no idea to begin with why Rick is so hurt to see her. Especially to his reaction of Sam playing As Time Goes By for her, but again he wants it played eventually. The build up really is fascinating as we wonder what happened between the pair in the past, it seems to take a long time to get to the moments in Paris. When Rick eventually gets his answers to why she did not meet him on the day they were supposed to leave, I really don’t think you’ll see better chemistry in a film than between Bogart and Bergman it really is breathtaking.
The story really does play with your emotions as you think the lovers are going to be reunited but is that to be the case? Rick has already made his mind up and I believe his ending speech to Ilsa is one of the best yet heartbreaking moments in film history. The manner in his delivery is just incredible as he is ready to let her go for a better life.
What an absolutely heartbreaking way to say goodbye to the woman he truly does love, telling her they will always have Paris. I also must admit that I have a t-shirt with those very words on, whether many people will understand the significant reference to this film is one thing. But for me it certainly does mean so much! Just showing that Paris has an incredible hold over lovers if they have spent any time there together.
Every time you re-watch this film that is also true you’ll always have Paris ❤