Passage to Marseille (1944)


“[to Paula as she is playing the piano] Funny how much more you can say with a few bars of music then a basketful of words.” – Jean Matrac

Number of Times Seen – 1 (5 Nov 2019)

Brief Synopsis – During World War II, a group of men are rescued by a passing ship that is on its way to Marseilles to help with the fight against the Nazis.

My Take on it – This is a film that I had never heard about before beginning my endeavor to expand my knowledge of films starring Humphrey Bogart.

This is a great war film that is able to bring together a bunch of characters who one would normally expect to not be inclined to work together, but the patriotism of them all is what truly helps them get over their other differences.

This is a film that is rightfully quite critical of both the Nazi Regime and the Vichy Government of France and shows how the complex nature of the relationship between these two governments caused a lot of friction between the French people since they were very split with regard to their feelings about it.

Bogart is quite good in this film and makes us really empathize with his character despite the fact that it’s a bit difficult to actually believe the ethnicity of his character as set forth.

The film does a great job presenting things in a very unique way that complicated things a bit yet at the same time makes it that much more thrilling to watch unfold.

It also is able to help make this story both more powerful and more poignant in all that it does.

Bottom Line – Great war movie that brings together some great characters as it tries to show their patriotism. The film is quite critical of the Nazi regime and the Vichy Government and show the complex nature of that relationship which caused much conflict among the French people at the time. Bogart does a wonderful job in this film despite the fact that he doesn’t manage to pull off the characters ethnicity. Love the way that the story is told in such a unique and complex way yet that doesn’t change the fact that it’s a very powerful and poignant story. Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – One of the few films to employ a flashback within a flashback within a flashback. This film is often seen as an attempt to recapture the magic of Casablanca (1942), which many of this film’s key players were a part. Some “usual suspects” include director Michael Curtiz, stars Humphrey Bogart and Claude Rains, supporting and bit players Peter Lorre, Sydney Greenstreet, Helmut Dantine and Corinna Mura, writer Casey Robinson, composer Max Steiner, producer Hal B. Wallis and executive producer Jack L. Warner (both films were made by Warner Bros.). Also, Michèle Morgan was originally cast as Ilsa in “Casablanca”, but her salary demand was too high, so Ingrid Bergman was cast instead. (From IMDB)

Rating – Globe Worthy (8/10)

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One thought on “Passage to Marseille (1944)

  1. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1944 | MovieRob

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