Well, it’s not the Casablanca of our dreams, a dram of brandy consumed while gambling our last thirty francs on roulette, as Sam tickles the ivories. Though truth be told, Rick never got within five thousand miles of Casablanca, since the movie was all shot on a backlot or a sound stage. Even the replica Rick’s Cafe Americain in Casablanca is now defunct. The French are long gone though their influence still lingers.
The overriding impressions I come away from modern Casablanca with are 1) don’t eat the fresh fish because it’s neither particularly fresh nor, apparently, is it put on ice while awaiting sale. 2) All men, especially those in sales, have aspirations to be the Moroccan version of Henny Youngman. Really, I never saw a place where everyone is such a comedian. Or at least trying to be. I almost bought a rug just cause the sales guy was cracking me up, and not because he’s all that funny but its a Borscht Belt kind of humor that most people in the States are too self conscious to mimic.
Overall, I’m glad we crossed this off the bucket list – Casablanca that is, not the visits with the amateur comics. Don’t think I’ll ever go back but it was worth a quick stop.