“You must remember this,
A kiss is just a kiss, a sigh is just a sigh,
The fundamental things apply,
As time goes by…….”http://www.youmaker.com/
(Jazz piano of As Time Goes By
performanced by Peter Nero & Friends)
This is the lyrics from the song “As Time Goes By” performing by Dooley Wilson in the American classics Casablanca (1942). Originally, it was first released in the Broadway musical Everybody’s Welcome in 1931 and became well-known as it was re-introduced in Casablanca. This song is voted as #2 amongst 100 songs in American Film Institute’s 100 Years series, with “Over the Rainbow” from The Wizard of Oz (1939) preceding it.
The beauty of this song is its wonderful capture of the past romance between Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart) and Ilsa Lund (Ingrid Bergman) in Casablanca. Setting in World War II, the movie is about a man being torn between love and virtue. Rick and Ilsa are having a good time when they are in France. With the sudden disappearance of Ilsa, Rick left France with a shattered heart. With the playing of their song “As Time Goes By” in the scene, the love couple meets again in Rick’s cafe in Casablanca. This time, Ilsa appears with her husband whom she previously thinks is dead, Victor Laszlo (Paul Henreid), a resistance leader against the Nazis. The appearance of Ilsa brings back the sweet memories of their old times and also the pain to Rick of losing her. Knowing that Rick has a transit letter which could save her husband, Ilsa asks Rick for help. Rick has to make his bitter decision of whether to reignite his love with Ilsa or to save countless lives by rescuing Laszlo. Variations of the melody of “As Time Goes By” repeatedly played in the movie and together with the movie, they become timeless masterpieces in American film history.
I have a special inclination towards Hollywood black and white movies. Back in the prime time of Hollywood movie industry, Hollywood stars are really stars. They shined in the movies and their unique star quality attracted audience which is a quality hard to find from the current movie actors and actresses. Casablanca made Bogart an American cultural icon. His portrayal of Rick as a cynical and bitter American expatriate is a legacy. The scene towards the ending is one of my favorite scene in the movie. After successfully helping Ilsa and Laszlo to get on the plane to America, Rick walks towards the mist with his friend Captain Renault and says his famous line "Louis, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship."
For more details about the story, you are recommended to check this out from Reel Classics: