Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Why I’m Behind Madonna’s Decision to Remake and Star in Casablanca

Like you, I was appalled by the idea that anyone would remake what is virtually a perfect movie, let alone that it was Madonna and that she wanted to play the part of Ilsa in the remake. I mean, my God! She’s 30 years older than Ingid Bergman was when she made the film. I thought maybe Madonna might be more appropriately cast as the signer in Rick’s Café. That would be a nice cameo. Then let someone like Kiera Knightly or Miranda Cosgrove play the part of Ilsa.

This really bugged me. I first heard about it last week or the week before. It struck me as something I needed to blog about, but, as you all know, I’ve been struggling with malaise vis a vis my blog. So I let it stew. As my thoughts about this proposed abomination boiled on the back burner, it started to seem less like a bad idea, a moral outrage, and more like an interesting experiment.

First of all, Madonna has a knack for adopting accents. I’m sure she could pull off Der Deutsche in a heartbeat. She’s also got the body of an East German Olympiad, sinewy and taught. So, on screen, she should look and sound German, no problem.

Also, Ilsa has been around the block a few times. She was married, she had a fling with Rick, she went back to her husband when she realized he was still alive, she reunited with Rick and thought about going back to him. I think Madonna has the life experience to portray someone with these types of tendencies.

Besides, who wouldn’t want to hear her reinterpret the sound track? I loved her music that had Indian influences (Ray of Light). I’d be really keen to hear Madonna ala Morocco. I’m sure it would be awesome.

And finally, for some reason, the movie “Sunset Boulevard” keeps coming to my mind when I think of Madonna remaking Casablanca. This is truly a Norma Desmond move. And, if the fates intervene and Madonna is not physically stopped by the film police, I will be sitting in the middle of the row, two-thirds of the way back in the theater, the optimal viewing location (I will, of course, have the theater to myself), with my popcorn and twizzlers, thinking, “Bring it on!”

If this is made, it will be the train wreck of the century! But then again, aren’t all of her movies (except of course for Desperately Seeking Susan, which is genius, and the only movie she’s been in where she probably had no creative control) train wreck’s of the century?


  1. Paging Madonna, paging Madonna...

    Your attention please.

    Your 15 minutes are way more than over.

  2. You have got to be making this sh*t up. There is no way anyone with the smallest love of great movies would sell her the rights to this masterpiece.

    Tell me this is a lie, please!


  3. She definitely has huge balls to even consider it. Gotta give the girl that.

  4. She was also good in A League of Their Own. Granted, that was not a Madonna movie, just a movie in which she did a nice job in a supporting role.

    I dig some of her music. I grew up with it. I own True Blue on LP. I'm not anti-Madonna by any stretch.

    The Casablanca thing is so far beyond travesty that I can't come up with a comment.

  5. hey, Doc-- since Flann's been sitting on this for awhile, lettuce hope it's all some sort of sick, cruel April Fool's joke.

    Nonetheless, I applaud Flannery for her strength and stamina in the face of o'erwhelming horribleism.

    Besides, she sat through "Fight Club" and "V for Vendetta", so how much bad-er could THIS be?? >:-]

  6. Where do you stand on her faux-british accent?

  7. I wonder if they'll go full color this time around?

  8. SD: She's an institution now...she gets at least an hour.

    Heals: Ah...truly terrible.

    Doc: I wish I could tell you this was a lie, but that would be lying.

    Beth: Balls a-plenty

    Red: My point! She's very good in movies where she has no creative control.

    Cap'n: I'd rather watch Madonna Casablanca than Fight Club, that's for sure!

    Grant: It bugs.

    BSUWG: I don't know about full color, but I'd almost guarantee full frontal! Hey-o!

  9. "Madonna has a knack for adopting accents." So nice that you were almost able to make this sound like a compliment. She is second only to Kathleen Turner in her ability to fake a pretentious sounding accent, and badly at that.

  10. I love Madonna as a singer. But I dunno. I would probably see the movie, but better be re-written very well. And where have I been that I never heard of this.

  11. CP: Word!

    AD: It's been a rotating featured headline on Yahoo News...where I find out about everything.

  12. Even though Ilsa had been around the block a bit, she still had a naivety quality to her that I don't think Madonna could capture. No way, no how. Leave my movie alone!!!

    But if George Clooney plays Rick Blaine, I'm all for it.

  13. If I hadn't seen her work in Evita I'd be downing this move too, but she did a fabulous job in that film, had a voice coach that improved her singing for good, I think she'll do fine. She's not the type to take on something like that and then screw it up.

  14. Gees, and I thought Evita was bad. This will be a full-bore horror show.

    I did like her as Breathless in Dick Tracy, though.