"It was on this day in 1942 that the film Casablanca had its first showing. The event took place at the Hollywood Theater in New York City. It starred Ingrid Bergman and Humphrey Bogart. Casablanca is the story of a cynical freedom fighter-turned-nightclub owner, Rick Blaine, an American expatriate living in Casablanca and staying out of politics, staying on the good side of the local police chief. Then Victor Laszlo, a leader of the European resistance movement, turns up in town and needs Rick's help. He brings his wife, Ilsa, who turns out to be Rick's former lover, a woman who ran away from Rick and broke his heart. Rick has two visas to get out of occupied Casablanca, and he considers escaping with Ilsa, but gives his visas to Victor and Ilsa.
The film did pretty well and got decent reviews. The New Yorker magazine called it 'pretty tolerable.' But it won the Academy Award for Best Picture, and now it's one of the best-loved films of all time, and one of the most quoted."