30 Day Movie Challenge – Day 23

Day 23 – Your favorite war movie

Gosh, I’m not sure. I’ve never seen Apocalypse Now or properly watched The Bridge on the River Kwai but of course I have seen my share of war movies. The ones that I thought were quite excellent are Schindler’s List, The Deer Hunter, The Imitation GameThe Railway ManAtonement or Good Morning Vietnam and probably more that I can’t think of right now. However, when I saw this question, two war movies did immediately spring to mind and again I can’t decide between two classic movies.

First up is The Guns of Navarone with Gregory Peck (yep, him again), Anthony Quinn and David Niven about a group of men that need to disable strategic German guns on the Greek island of Navarone. Stirring stuff which leaves you on the edge of your seat throughout the movie.

And The African Queen with Katharine Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart about a gin-swilling riverboat captain who is perusaded by a prim missionary lady to use his boat to attack an enemy warship at the beginning of World War I in East Africa. Even though I’m not a huge Humphrey Bogart fan I love the interaction between him and Katharine Hepburn in this movie.

It’s been a while since I’ve seen either movie but I would again in a heartbeat.

(30 Day Movie Challenge – the full list of questions)

30 Day Movie Challenge – Day 20

Day 20 – Your favourite romantic movie

I could just be lazy and refer to my favourite movie Roman Holiday again. Or I could refer to other romantic movies I have already mentioned during this challenge, but I won’t; I’ll pick a new one and I have two Ingrid Bergman movies I am trying to choose between.

First there’s Casablanca with Humphrey Bogart from 1942. It’s a wonderfully constructed movie about politics and love with a lot of drama, suspense, and yes, even humour. Even the minor characters are excellent in this movie. Apparently many actors were themselves refugees from Europe.

So very many classic scenes in Casablanca! From Dooley Wilson singing As Time Goes By, to depressed Bogart sitting in a darkened bar with a whiskey drowning his heartache, to the “We’ll always have Paris” scenes, the people in the bar singing the Marseillaise and drowning out the German officers singing, the ending with the famous line: “Louis, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.” It has brought so many more classic lines, like “Round up the usual suspects” and “Here’s looking at you kid” and “It doesn’t take much to see that the problems of three little people don’t amount to a hill of beans in this crazy world” and “Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine” and “You played it for her, you can play it for me… If she can stand it, I can. Play it!” Let me just share this scene from Casablanca where the romantic tension is just palpable:

A fun little scene I would also like to share is this one of an elderly Austrian refugee couple who are looking forward to traveling on from Casablanca to America…

I could share so many more! In fact, it’s probably just best to watch the whole thing. 🙂 Apparently right up till the end of filming it was still unclear which man Ingrid Bergman would end up with, so she had to be totally in love with both men at the same time. I’m still not sure whether she made the right choice or not…

The other Ingrid Bergman movie I was thinking of is Notorious from 1946. It’s an Alfred Hitchcock movie with Cary Grant in which Ingrid Bergman plays a woman who has to spy on a group of ex-Nazis in South America, Cary Grant is her handler and they fall in love but life, love and trust aren’t so easy…

The chemistry between Ingrid Bergman and Cary Grant is absolutely crackling! There’s danger and attraction and yearning for each other and jealousy. You so very much root for these two to get together in the end! The scene where they go to Ingrid’s apartment and hold each other and talk and kiss and never once break contact while moving around to make a phone call is considered to be the longest kissing scene in a movie! I don’t know if that still is the case, but that is the reputation it has had. Here’s a video of Alfred Hitchcock talking about that scene and the funny story that inspired it:

My first inclination was to answer Casablanca to this question, but now, as love stories go, I think I may have to go with Notorious instead! A lot more kissing in there as well than in Casablanca. 😉 Anyway, both are excellent movies!

(30 Day Movie Challenge – the full list of questions)