USA Today - 11/07/2003
"A CASABLANCA-influenced love story set against a French Resistance backdrop in Martinique."
A 40-something Humphrey Bogart and a novice named Lauren Bacall might have seemed like an odd pairing on paper, but their chemistry in TO HAVE AND HAVE NOT ignites the screen. Howard Hawks directs this classic about a jaded American fisherman (Bogart) who risks his life to help a group of French freedom fighters and a sultry young woman (Bacall) with whom he falls in love. The fascinating setting (Vichy-controlled Martinique during the Second World War), the source material (Ernest Hemingway's 1937 novel), and a screenplay co-written by a literary master (William Faulkner) all take a backseat to the on- and off-screen romance between the two legends. TO HAVE AND HAVE NOT is perhaps most memorable for the 19-year-old Bacall seducing Bogart (and audiences) with her lesson on whistling.
Description by Warner Home Video:
To Have and Have Not
Help the Free French' Not world-weary gunrunner Harry Morgan (Humphrey Bogart). But he changes his mind when a sultry siren-in-distress named Marie asks, "Anybody got a match'"
That red-hot match is Bogart and 19-year-old first-time film actress Lauren Bacall. Full of intrigue and racy banter (including Bacall's legendary whistling instructions), this thriller excites further interest for what it has and has not. Cannily directed by Howard Hawks and smartly written by William Faulkner and Jules Furthman, it doesn't have much similarity to the Ernest Hemingway novel that inspired it. And it strongly resembles Casablanca: French resistance fighters, a piano-playing bluesman (Hoagy Carmichael) and a Martinique bar much like Rick's Cafe Americaine. But first and foremost, it showcases Bogart and Bacall, carrying on with a passion that smolders from the tips of their cigarettes clear through to their souls.
Bogie stars as an American sailor in Martinique during World War II. Although money speaks louder than politics in his book, the French Resistance ultimately wins him over -- as does the sexy, seductive Marie, played by Lauren Bacall in her Hollywood debut.
Essential Cinema |
World War II
Screen acting debut for former model Lauren Bacall.