Happy New Year

Happy New Year to all of my blog readers!

This New Year’s Eve we engaged in a movie-watching marathon of three classics.

The first film was the 1938 Algiers. It’s mainly a morality tale of love lost and betrayed; of crime and the lesson that crime doesn’t pay—or, better yet, that one pays for one’s crime in the end. The French police set a trap for the criminal, jewel thief Pepe Le Moko, who is holed up in the tangled maze of the Algiers Kasbah. However, Pepe’s refuge in the Kasbah becomes his prison. He leaves his lover Ines in the Kasbah to chase another woman, Gaby; and the French authorities arrest and then shoot him as he attempts to escape on a boat headed to France with Gaby on it.

John Huston directed the 1953 Beat the Devil, starring Humphrey Bogart as Billy Dannreuther, an agent accomplice with four other criminals on their way to East Africa in a get rich quick scheme of exploiting the uranium trade there. The trip however is full of surprises, as they get entangled with an enterprising couple from Britain, which leads to a rather unexpected conclusion. The genre is that of adventure, and an interesting study of the repercussions of lies, half-truths, dreams, imagination, and infatuation. The most provocative quote in the movie comes from one of the criminals, Julius O’Hara, played by Peter Lorre: “Time. What is time? Swiss manufacture it. French hoard it. Italians squander it. Americans say it is money. Hindus say it does not exist. Do you know what I say? I say time is a crook.” The latter sentence ironically, becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

In the 1933 romance drama, I Cover The Waterfront, Pacific coast rookie newspaper reporter, Joe Miller, in an effort to get promoted and a move to Vermont, seeks out the perfect, front-page story. He suspects that a sea captain, fisherman Eli Kirk is engaged in trafficking illegal Chinese immigrants. Finally he convinces his boss, after one unsuccessful attempt of the Coast Guard to arrest Kirk, to try again. This time illegal immigrants are found, but the plot takes a rather predictable turn when Miller realises how much he loves the sea captain’s daughter, Julie. The movie poses the ethical dilemma that Julie is in: Does she remain loyal to her dad’s agenda or does she share pertinent information to further Miller’s inquiry?      

 

 

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About dimlamp
I am, among other things, a sojourner, a sinner-saint, a baptized, life-long learner and follower of Jesus, and Lutheran pastor. Dim Lamp: dimlamp.wordpress.com gwh photos: gwhphotos.wordpress.com

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