Very loosely adapted from the eponymous Hemingway novel and a kissing cousin to Casablanca, To Have and Have Not introduced Lauren Bacall — at the time a 19-year-old model who had been discovered by director Howard Hawks’ wife on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar — as “Slim,” an American itinerant on the French-controlled island of Martinique who falls hard for Harry “Steve” Morgan, the taciturn owner of a fishing boat (Bogart, natch). When a charter client leaves him in the lurch and the Vichy authorities seize his passport, hard-luck Harry reluctantly agrees to smuggle members of the French Resistance off the island — but trouble arises when his sodden sidekick (Walter Brennan) succumbs to the sauce and spills details of the scheme. Despite being reportedly paralyzed by fear in front of the camera, Bacall delivered quite the show in her first screen appearance, huskily crooning “How Little We Know” and lasciviously delivering such instantly famous lines as “You know how to whistle, don’t you, Steve? You just put your lips together and — blow.” “In many ways the ultimate Hawks film: clear, direct, and thoroughly brilliant” (Dave Kehr).
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