CASABLANCA (1942) – Happy Valentine’s Day! A few readers of Balladeer’s Blog have asked me for my opinion on this classic movie so I figured Valentine’s Day was the perfect opportunity.
People are often surprised when I like movies that so many other people rate highly. I like plenty of the old, old classics, it’s just that I prefer to blog about much more offbeat and obscure items. My favorite film of all time is Citizen Kane. Really. But I’ve never reviewed it here because I wasn’t in the mood to write the 100 millionth glowing review of that particular movie.
Getting back to Casablanca, it’s possibly the greatest “bittersweet ending” romantic flick ever made. I find that it appeals to almost everyone. If you’re young and naïve it can make you ache at the thought of persevering despite your broken heart. If you’re older and cynical it makes you nostalgic for a time when you actually thought a broken heart was the worst thing that could happen to you. Continue reading
FINALLY, ON THE 87TH TAKE, EVERYTHING SEEMED PERFECT … UNTIL HENRI SUFFERED AN UNFORTUNATE ERUPTION OF FLATULENCE.
The latest in this series of captions for iconic moments from the Continue reading
THE RETURN OF DR X (1939) – Category: Enjoyably campy bad movie elevated by kitsch-value in the casting.
Yes, it’s the famous “Humphrey Bogart as a zombie mad scientist” movie. The tale goes that Jack Warner inflicted this role on gangster-flick star Bogart as punishment for resisting being cast in too many formulaic crime films. This was, of course, before The Maltese Falcon made Bogie a big-time star and long before actors had the kind of contracts that they have these days.
Bogart plays the titular Dr X, but not the same Dr X that Lionel Atwill played in a movie of that name earlier in the decade. This Dr X is Dr Maurice Xavier, a mad scientist executed in the electric chair for, among other things, bizarre experiments on infants (a pretty ballsy story element in those pre- Auschwitz awareness days).
The “return” mentioned in the title refers to the fact that Bogart’s Dr X has been brought back from the dead by the film’s secondary menace, Dr Flegg (and let’s face it , The Return Of Dr Flegg just doesn’t have the same sinister appeal).
Flegg can bring people back from the dead but needs Dr X’s help to Continue reading
The fourth in this latest series of Continue reading
Enjoy the third in this Continue reading