Bogie and his son, Stephen
Humphrey Bogart & Lauren Bacall photographed at home c. 1949
Humphrey Bogart on Bette Davis: “Even when I was carrying a gun, she scared the be-jesus out of me.”
So I was super, super excited. I’ve seen this movie before, so I already knew it was wonderful, but it’s been a long time, so I forgot just how wonderful. In short, it was pretty damn wonderful. What was not so wonderful was the group of idiot girls who were whispering a bit toward the beginning of the movie. Luckily, the professor shut them up pretty quickly. Worse yet was what they were saying after the movie ended when everyone was leaving.
You see, last semester I took a film class called, Gender and Race in Melodrama. Basically, I was one of two or three freshmen in the entire class, and the rest of it was filled with a good mix of film majors, women’s studies majors, African American studies majors, and other people who were just really interested in the course content. We had intelligent discussions, respected and appreciated the films we watched, and were all genuinely interested in the class. Obviously not everyone agreed and enjoyed everything we watched, but I felt like the environment was very mature and everyone understood what the class entailed. I have a bad feeling that this film class is going to be very different than last semester.
I am pretty sure that my class is filled with mostly underclassmen, freshmen specifically, who are just taking it to fulfill their art credit. If you aren’t at all interested in the arts, I imagine a film studies class does seem like the safest and most fun choice to sit through. However, I am sure that almost none of them actually know anything about film other than what comes out nowadays. Basically, none of them have any actual interest in good films that don’t star Angelina Jolie.
Well, back to my story. After the film ended, the girls in back of me gathered their things and left the room at roughly the same speed as me, so they were walking behind me and talking to each other all the way out of the building, and unfortunately I heard every word. They were saying that it was “literally” the most boring movie they had ever sat through. One girl was saying that she thought all of the guys in the movie were really hot. She got into an argument about it with a friend of hers:
Friend: “Are you kidding? Are you actually kidding?”
Girl: “No, especially the guy who played, what’s his name, Rick.”
Friend: “Seriously, are you kidding me right now? Did you see how long his face was? I thought it was never gonna end!”
Girl: “No, I mean for the age and decade and everything I thought he looked really good.”
Additional friend: “I thought the other guy was cute.”
Additional additional friend: “Yeah, me too. Hahaha!”
Friend: “I thought everyone in that movie was repulsive!”
Me: [Dreams of punching every single one of them in the face, saying, “His name is Humphrey Bogart, morons,” and walking away. Doesn’t.]
The worst part is that I remember waiting outside the classroom on Wednesday (the first class of the semester), hearing these girls talk to each other, and thinking they were morons. I tried to remind myself not to judge without knowing. I remembered how I go to a good school, so they must have been smart to get in. I remembered that not everyone knows as much about film as I do, and that’s okay, too. I remembered not to think like a pretentious asshole and give these girls a chance. Well, I have a feeling that I was wrong, they are idiots, and this class is going to be hell. I want to believe that they will learn from the class and become interested in the subject and prove me wrong, but I really don’t think so. I think that the week of Citizen Kane may be the week that I actually commit murder.
Humphrey Bogart & Lauren Bacall riding a gondola in Venice, Italy.