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Casablanca Film Analysis

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        Casablanca tells the captivating story of two past lovers stuck between love and war. The Film takes place in French Morocco city of Casablanca, during World War II. Thousands of European refugees fleeing from the Germans had to go to Africa and obtain exit visas in order to go to America. Everyone from all over Europe were doing whatever they could to leave as soon as possible. Rick Blaine owns Rick’s Café which happens to be the top place to be in Casablanca. The films story essentially starts off when Ugarte gives rick two letters of transit he stole from two Germans he murdered for safe keeping. He is later arrested at ricks café leaving Rick with two visas. A couple shows up at ricks, Victor Laszlo and his wife Ilsa. Laszlo is a leader of the Czech resistance against the Nazis and a framed rebellious man with Germans tracking him down, so his number one priority is getting out of Europe as quickly as possible. Ilsa also happens to be Ricks past lover who broke his heart, so when Rick and Ilsa saw each other for the first time it brought a lot of emotion. Major Strasser of the Gestapo told Rick he was not allowed to let Laszlo leave Casablanca but Ilsa knows Rick can help her and Laszlo leave the country. The film shows a flashback scene of Rick and Ilsa being in Paris and in love. This scene is very important because it shows how madly in love Rick was with Ilsa and how she left him and didn’t get on the train with him. Leaving everyone with questions. The flashback scene is an example of restricted narrative because the audience knows just as much as the main character. During this scene Rick has no idea why Ilsa didn’t leave with him and the audience doesn’t either. When Laszlo and Ilsa find out that Rick has the two letters of transit, Rick rejects giving it to them by saying "he doesn't stick his neck out for anyone.” Rick is clearly still hurt from what Ilsa did to him in the past and can’t seem to let it go. Laszlo begs Rick to sell him the letters of transit and offers Rick whatever price he wants; he still says no. Ilsa also tries to ask him for them but after asking doesn’t work she pulls a gun on Rick saying she’ll shoot him if he doesn’t give them to her. This is when Ilsa finally confesses her love for Rick and tells him she will stay in Casablanca if he gives Laszlo one transit ticket. She finally tells rick the real reason why she didn’t go with him in Paris, and that is because she was married to Laszlo when she met Rick. This is another example of restricted narrative because Ilsa is telling Rick the answer to the question everyone was wondering. Rick comes up with a plan to let Laszlo and Ilsa leave using the visas and in the process of doing this, Rick shoots Strasser because he is trying to prevent them from leaving. In this scene, Rick tells Laszlo that him and Ilsa really did love each other in Paris and that she pretended to still love him just to get the letters, Laszlo and Ilsa get in the plane and leave. Renault calls the police but tells them to “round up the usual suspects” instead of turning Rick in. They both leave free with Rick saying “this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.”



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